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April 11, 11:00 AM ET
Chat with Ricky Stenhouse Jr.

Buzzmaster
  (11:01 AM)

We've got Ricky!

Kris (Denver)

What's the key to racing at Texas?

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  (11:02 AM)

One of the keys is you have to be able, for us, we're lucky enough to practice at the same time we race. That's key to get the car right when you practice for the race. The track does change a lot.

Jeff (FL)

What was the biggest lesson you learned last year that helped you win the title?

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  (11:02 AM)

Just being patient. Making sure we put ourselves in a position to get the most points we could at the end of the race.

Taylor (Ann Arbor, MI)

What changes for you racing as a one car team this weekend, with Trevor not racing this weekend?

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  (11:03 AM)

We won't make any changes. Trevor's guys did their own thing and we did our own thing. Then we'd talk about it. But our guys have a pretty good hold on what we need to do. We won't change too much.

Bob (New York)

How are you preparing for Friday Night?

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  (11:03 AM)

We're preparing to win. We've had two weeks off, so we've been making our race cars as fast as we can. We're in a position where we think we can go in to win.

Jeff (KS)

what did you do with your week off?

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  (11:04 AM)

This last weekend, I went to church. Went to visit the family for Easter. Played a little golf. But we were in the shop mostly.

Dave (ATL)

How much trust and faith do you have to have as a driver that your guys in the shop will get things just right for the car?

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  (11:05 AM)

You have to have a lot of confidence. That's a big key that people don't see. I'm only as good as the guys in the shop. They put very good and fast race cars together for me.

Dagwood (Far Nor Cal) [via mobile]

Nice show in the daytona 500. Any plans to be in upcoming sprint cup races?

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  (11:05 AM)

We don't have any plans, but I think there is some talk about us doing it. But there are no set plans right now.

Peter (RI)

You went from rookie of the year one year to the champ the next...were you surprised at how quickly you were able to have such success?

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  (11:06 AM)

I wasn't surprised. I felt that at the end of 2010 that we were running strong and that we could compete in 2011. The equipment was where we needed it to be. We had the confidence and the equipment.

KEvin (CT)

What would you say most prepared you to have such quick success on the Nationwide track?

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  (11:07 AM)

A good team around me. We had the same team for three years. That's important. The race cars kept getting better every year. I felt I kept getting better every year. That experience helps a lot.

Dale Jr. (Dallas)

Who's your pick to win the Cup race at Texas ... and good luck to you in the NNS race.

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  (11:08 AM)

Matt won it last year and our Roush Fenway Fords are always fast there. Greg Biffle is one to watch. Anyone in our organization can win the race. But there are also other guys out there that can win.

Kyle New Phila,OH [via mobile]

Ricky im a huge fan! Can I expect a full Cup season next year with you and Roush Fenway?

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  (11:08 AM)

We haven't sat down and talked about it, but moving up is a plan that I would like to go down, but it's ultimately up to Jack. Nothing official.

Alex (Fort Worth) [via mobile]

Who was/is ur idol in this sport?

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  (11:09 AM)

Growing up, I was always a big fan of Jeff Gordon. When I got a little bit older, Tony Stewart is someone that's done a lot in his career and I was able to drive for him in 2007. Both of those guys.

Ryan Cruz (Bushkill, PA)

What other sports would you like to watch, and to play with friends and family.

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  (11:10 AM)

Oh man...growing up, I played everything. I played football, basketball, baseball. We watch everything, play everything. We're a pretty outdoor family.

Justin M (Boone, NC)

With RFR's strength on the intermediates and Trevor's win at Texas last fall, do you expect a 1-2 finish?

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  (11:10 AM)

We're definitely expecting a strong finish. On the Nationwide side and the Cup side. We won the last 1.5 mile race in Vegas. We're looking to do the same in Texas.

Paulie (Boston)

what's your favorite part of racing in Texas?

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  (11:11 AM)

Probably if you win, you get some cowboy hats. That's the plan. I really like the track. It's really fast. Being under the lights makes any race track that much better.

Adam C (Vermont)

Ricky, do you expect to stay with Jack Roush for your entire career?

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  (11:12 AM)

I think that would be cool. Obviously Jack gave me my first ride. Ford racing has been supportive throughout the whole process. I think I owe it to them to stick with them for a long time.

Bill Shep (Lynn MA)

Hey Ricky,Very impressive how you have turned things around in such a short time. Has any of your Roush Fenway teammates helped you along more than others?

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  (11:13 AM)

They've helped out a little bit. They don't come and offer advice, but if I go ask them, they definitely help out a lot.

Adam C (Vermont)

(How about a joke to close?) Have you ever thought about changing your last name to Bobby?

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  (11:13 AM)

No, but I do get that a lot.

Alex (Fort Worth) [via mobile]

Do you have any pre-race rituals u do before each race? Lucky underwear etc...

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  (11:13 AM)

I do not. There are people that do, but I'm pretty free flowing. Just kind of do whatever.

Karl (Denver)

does it ever get boring at the track in your trailer?

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  (11:14 AM)

You definitely do. You wish that there was something that you could go out and practice all of the time and do with the race car. But those are some of the really good times hanging out with the crew. But sometimes we do get bored.

Derrick (Chicago)

have you tried racing video games?

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  (11:15 AM)

iRacing is pretty realistic. They scan the racing tracks. That's the one to use.

Charlie (Conecticut)

How are you preparing for Fridays race?

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  (11:16 AM)

We have got appearances and media things throughout the day when we're there. But really we'll practice Thursday night and make sure we get the car exactly where it needs to be.

Dave (NJ)

how hands on are you?

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  (11:17 AM)

I definitely help out. I'll go in there and do things that I know I can't mess up. I do help out. I go in there every day and enjoy hanging out with them.

Ethan Butler (Pella, Iowa)

How hard is it to continue to be consistent in this sport week after week?

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  (11:17 AM)

It's very difficult. The cars are always changing. The competition's cars are always getting better. Sometimes when you try to make them better, you make them worse. It's very difficult.

bob (Connecticut)

On race day, What foods do you eat?

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  (11:18 AM)

There is really none that I prefer. I eat whatever. A lot of times, I'll have one of our black angus steaks which are one of our sponsors.

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  (11:22 AM)

This weekend we're going to have Pure Michigan on the car. We're holding a contest where the winner can win a Pure Michigan Mustang. The finalists will be brought to the Pure Michigan 400 in August when the winner will be announced. Go to Michigan.org/MIS starting tomorrow for details. Thanks for joining the chat!