Pollard will enter the race in a team out of the R & S Race Cars stable, looking for a big payday – and a whole lot of fun.
Bubba Pollard will enter the Old North State Nationals at Orange County Speedway in a car fielded by R & S Race Cars. Justin Johnson won the CARS Tour season opener at Dillon Motor Speedway in an R & S Race Car.
“We’re just going into this weekend just to have fun,” Pollard told Speed51. “They’ve worked really hard to put this together for us, Marcus [Richmond], Justin Johnson, everyone who has worked together to put this deal together for us.”
It is admittedly a race Pollard has always wanted to run, but didn’t have circled on his calendar for the 2021 season as he has been focused on both his family business and Senoia Raceway, now owned by the Pollard family.
It happened pretty quickly, really. I had no intentions of running the race. We’ve always been friends with Marcus Richmond for years and talked about doing it for the longest time, but never had the opportunity. We got a call a few weeks ago and put the deal together pretty quick.
“I’m looking forward to race with such a caliber team on such short notice. We’ve been super busy here with business and the race track. We haven’t had our focus on racing right now, so I think it will be a good opportunity to go back, get into the swing of things and have fun.”
While not having to prepare his own car and go through the typical preparations of race week have lessened Pollard’s pre-race workload, he still feels plenty of pressure to perform this weekend. In fact, he believes driving someone else’s equipment only adds to that pressure.
“I feel like it’s more pressure driving for other people. They’ve taken a lot of pressure off of me in aspects of getting the car ready. Just showing up to drive has been a huge part of why we did this and has helped me stay focus on business and the race track.
Driving for someone else, you have to show up 100 percent and be on your A-game as a driver. With me being out of the seat the last couple of months, I’m a little rusty. I’ve got to stay in shape and everything else to get back to where we need to be.
Still, Pollard is looking forward to returning to a track he loves, Orange County Speedway. Pollard has always run well at the North Carolina facility in Super Late Model competition, including a win in the 2018 Mid Atlantic Classic at the track.
“I love Orange County. I think it’s a great place to race. Multiple lanes, multiple grooves, it’s slick, it’s got character, it’s got some bounce and bumps to it. The place is so unique. Also, you’re going into the CARS Tour, which is so competitive. This weekend is going to be tough, but the biggest thing is to have fun.”
Perhaps most importantly, Pollard wants the weekend to be a fun one.
“We’ve taken some time off here because we weren’t having fun. If you can’t go and compete and win and you’re not having fun, there’s no reason to do it. We’re going to give it another shot with a group of guys we know and have some fun with it. Orange County is a place I enjoy going, so it should be a lot of fun.”
-Story by: Zach Evans, Speed51 Content Supervisor – Twitter: @ztevans
-Photo credit: Bubba Pollard on Twitter