Fine details crucial to Keiper’s success as No. 24 mechanics
CONCORD, NC – In stock car racing, it’s the fine details that are rewarded with success. To win in the NASCAR Cup Series, this statement carries extra weight as the best drivers and teams compete against each other every weekend.
For Tyler Keiper, a road mechanic with the No. 24 Axalta Racing team, it’s these fine details that keep his team running at the front of the field.
While Keiper is in his first season at Hendrick Motorsports, his experience in the sport is extensive. Since 2015, the Pocono Summit, Pennsylvania, natively had worked for Kyle Busch Motorsports in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. In 2016, he worked as a tire specialist with an up-and-coming driver by the name of William Byron, winning seven races with the team that Rudy Fugle served as a crew chief on.
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Since coming into the Cup Series, Keiper’s role has adjusted slightly. Unlike the Truck Series, his work deals mostly with race cars that are nearly complete. This extra preparation has been an adjustment, but one that now allows him extra time to carefully analyze the details of what needs to be changed to ensure success on the racetrack.
“On the Cup side, we race so much that there’s less involvement in the assembly process and a lot more focus on the details, which are so important at this level” Keiper said. “Since we’re gone almost every single weekend, you get a car that’s already in a really good state and it lets us to do the last couple things that we need.”
During the race weekend, you will find Keiper around the pit box making sure that everything is in working order. From getting the car rolled out to the grid, to ensure that his driver’s vehicle is ready to race, he stays busy at the track. Despite the long hours, it’s a process that he quite enjoys.
“With the limited amount of people on the track now, everybody has an important job,” Keiper said. “When it’s time to go, everything is super intense because it’s so short.”
As the playoffs are set to begin next weekend at Darlington Raceway, the No. 24 Axalta Racing team is determined to put their best foot forward. This process involves far more than the driver and begins with the mechanics such as Keiper, who is responsible for helping the car find race-winning speed.
“Rudy and the team have done a really good job bringing fast cars to the racetrack,” Keiper said. “We’ve had one thing or another happen to take us out of contention. It hasn’t always been the greatest Saturday, but when the race starts, we’re going forward.”
Entering Daytona International Speedway with two wins on the season, Keiper and the No. 24 teams will look for one more victory before the start of the playoffs. Catch the action from the “World Center of Racing” on Sunday morning at 10 am ET on CNBC, MRN Radio, and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio (Channel 90).
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