David Ragan became a known name in the NASCAR world as a youngster, racing in the Camping World Trucks series at age 18 and breaking into Sprint Cup fulltime at 21.
He had the best season of his career in 2011, winning the Coke Zero 400 at Daytona for his first Cup victory.
Sponsorship issues led to him leaving Roush Fenway Racing and ultimately landing at Front Row Motorsports this season. Currently 28th in points, he'll be driving the No. 34 Scorpion Truck Bed Liners Ford in Saturday night's Sprint Cup race at Texas Motor Speedway.
After having one of your better seasons last year, was it frustrating the way things ended with Roush?
“It was frustrating and a little disappointing that we weren't able to keep that group of guys together. We had a good rapport among us all. UPS was a great sponsor to work with. We were fast enough to be a Chase contender. We had some engine issues and a couple of unfortunate wrecks that kept us out of the race. I wish we could've kept that group together. But things happen for a reason and everything changes with time. It was time to move on after UPS decided they were going to cut back.”
What has the transition been like, moving from a big-money team at Roush to a smaller team at Front Row?
“It was a big change going from a four-car team with four great drivers to a two-car team that has half the employees, half the drivers, half the research and development that goes into building the group. It's been different and it's more of a challenge, because you don't have the extra 100 or 200 employees back at the shop preparing and doing research for future races.”
Sounds like it's been a big adjustment.
“It has taken some adjustment, but I've enjoyed it. I find myself having a more personal relationship with each of the guys in the shop who work on and build our race cars. And I've found myself getting more involved with the team. Anytime you're part of a big organization, whether it's a racing team or a business, you tend to do your job and you don't really venture off. With a smaller group, I find myself getting involved in more areas of the team than in years past. So I have a lot of fun with that.
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Texas Motor Speedway Schedule
9:30 a.m.: Gate 4 opens
10 a.m.: Nationwide practice
1:30 p.m.: All gates open
4 p.m.: Nationwide qualifying
5:40 p.m.: Sprint Cup qualifying
7:30 p.m.: Nationwide O'Reilly Auto Parts 300
10 a.m.: Legends races at Lil' Texas
1:30 p.m.: Gate 6 opens; No Limits Garage Party
2:30 p.m.: All gates open
6:30 p.m.: Sprint Cup Samsung Mobile 500