Richard Childress is enlisting some additional help early in the season to try and get off to a fast start.
With the departure of Clint Bowyer to Michael Waltrip Racing, Richard Childress will scale back to three full time Cup teams. But he'll use the points from Bowyer's 33 car to run the first five events of the season. Elliott Sadler gets the call at Daytona and Brendan Gaughan will be behind the wheel for the four events after that.
They've got a great program, and when Richard asked me about it, I was just blown away,” Sadler said. “To go to Daytona with a car that has a legitimate chance to win the race and run up front, I'm very happy about that.”
Gaughan has 37 career Cup starts.
“I know you don't get second chances often, if at all. Eight years it's been but a second chance of this caliber does not come along. Elliott Sadler knows it as well as I do. You don't get second chances so you have to take full advantage of it and appreciate it, and I do.”
Both Sadler and Gaughan have seen a little bit of everything at nearly every level of racing. They are both also former college basketball players, Gaughan at Georgetown University where he learned a lot about what the racing world would throw at him.
“The thing about Elliott is he has an athletic background,” Gaughan said. “He is used to coaches that pick on ya in certain ways. A lot of drivers can't do that. I know that my mental toughness comes from a 7-foot … man named John Thompson. He beat it into me that you've got to be tough, to survive in this sport and in life. I appreciate everything he ever taught me. Perseverance has gotten me to this second opportunity.”
Brendan will have a close eye on college basketball's March Madness and hopes to create his own thrilling drama for Childress.