Chris Dodd coming off his best career finish at Atlanta

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Chris Dodd coming off his best career finish at Atlanta Empty Chris Dodd coming off his best career finish at Atlanta

Post by FUEL on April 7th 2018, 11:56 am

Everyone loves a good underdog story and with Chris Dodd getting paired up with Martin Motorsports for this year driving the #15 Ford the same car that Jeff James drove last year... A lot of expectations fell on Dodd to have a career year. It's been somewhat of a slow start however, Dodd found himself in the Top 3 at one point at Atlanta and held onto a Top 5 run at Atlanta racing against some of the series best. Chris Dodd finished the race in 5th place, his previously best career finish being 12th at Indy in 2017.

Chris Dodd: "I have to thank God for giving me this chance first off, and man I can't be happier with not only this #15 Oreo's Ford team, but with Martin Motorsports as a whole.  The amount of work and dedication these guys that work on these race cars week in and week out, it's truly an honor to be driving for such a great team. To get my first Top 5, and Top 10 for that matter, at a track like Atlanta where tire wear is so important and the driver and team really have to work together to get that car to drive well as the run goes along, is a fantastic feeling.

Ya know, I felt that I came into this season with a lot of pressure, going from my own team that was probably a 20th-25th place team at best on most weekends, to a team that was one of if not the best and a car that won several races and almost the Championship last year. I think I put a lot of pressure on myself to do good from the start, forgetting that, let's be real, I've never actually ran in equipment that could really do anything(laughs). It's like going from a Moped straight into a Harley, it's not something you can just adjust to drive in a day, it takes some time. But obviously, I didn't think like that, I just thought to myself, "Man, I gotta do good from Day 1, this is my chance to shine!"
So when we didn't start the year all that well, from wrecking very early in the Duels, to having a tire problem that to be honest probably took us out of a chance to finish really well at the 500, it was tough. But that's Daytona, stuff like that happens. But when we got to Rockingham and were as utterly mediocre as we were, and then California came and it went the same, and then we came to Atlanta and and we just couldn't find any speed in practice or qualifying, and we started out the race just running so mediocre, I mean there is no question that the thought starts popping in your mind like, "Was this guy really prepared and ready to get into this ride?" 

We got really fortunate that 1st caution came out, and the pit stops worked like they did to keep us on the lead lap, cause that really changed the whole gameplan of how we ran. We started really making some major adjustments, and as the race went along I really felt like we clicked on something, and I could feel the difference in how our car ran. Once we started moving our way forward, I felt like my confidence grew almost every lap, especially late in the race there when I battling Nick Mace. Man, even though he got me on that final corner, it gave me so much confidence knowing I could battle him and that we could race with him. 

I have come out of Atlanta feeling completely different about not only this season, but about how I feel as a driver. I now feel like we can race with these guys, and that as each week goes along and we get more comfortable as a team and I get more confident as a driver, that these finishes will start turning out more consistently, and that maybe sometime here soon, I can be battling my teammates up there for that checkered flag. Gotta say, that would be pretty cool."

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