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WATCH: Exclusive interview with NASCAR Driver Matt Kenseth and fans at Pink's

WATCH: Daytona 500 Winner Matt Kenseth addresses fans at Pink's Hot Dogs

 
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NASCAR Auto Racing News

Saturday, 3 March, 2012 8:57 PM

Matt Kenseth stops at Pink's Hot Dogs to celebrate his Daytona 500 victory

The Roush Fenway Racing driver also previewed the upcoming Auto Club 400 race in Fontana, Calif.

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

The Pink family welcomed Daytona 500 Winner Matt Kenseth to Pink's Famous Hot Dogs in Los Angeles.

 

by Jason Rzucidlo
americajr@americajr.com

 

|

LOS ANGELES -- NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Matt Kenseth won the Daytona 500 race for the second time on Monday night. The race was postponed for the first time ever from its usual Sunday timeslot due to rain showers. However, officials finally got the race in and the checkered flag waved at around 1 a.m. on Tuesday. Kenseth's victory was the 300th for his team, Roush Fenway Racing, which is also celebrating its 25th year in motorsports. One day and a few hours later, the driver was celebrating at Pink's Famous Hot Dogs in the Hollywood neighborhood of Los Angeles.

"We're honored to have you here, Congratulations," said Richard Pink, owner of Pink's Famous Hot Dogs. "You're the greatest. We're going to serve up some wonderful winners or wieners."

The two-time Daytona 500 winner arrived at the restaurant shortly after 11 a.m. on Wednesday. About 100 of his biggest fans and several news outlets were there to greet him including AmericaJR.com.

"Well, it feels great, it's the biggest stock car race in the world," Kenseth said about winning the race in an exclusive interview. "It's our biggest race of the year and it kicks off our season so there's a lot of great things about it. I can't think of anything bad about it so it feels great."

This year's race was filled with lots of crashes including a huge fire that broke out when Juan Pablo Montoya hit the track drying truck. Did you know what was going on at the time?

"Not exactly at the time, I didn't know," he answered. "Some people told me so that was a scary moment. I was really glad he was alright and the driver of that truck was alright as well."

Kenseth is a four-time winner at the Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif. He revealed the secret to winning there with me.

"It's a tricky track, it's been changing through the years," the Roush Fenway Racing driver explained. "It's a really, really competitive track. The key is to be able to run all of the different lines on the race track. You really got to have your car fast last here up on the high side. That's been a challenge for me. As the track ages and wears, you have to change your approach a little bit each year. You only come once a year so you really got to feel it out and see what you got."

What's your favorite part of racing here in southern California?

"Well, the favorite part of any kind of racing is when you can win," the NASCAR driver added. "I've always really liked the track. It's got a lot of speed. The facility is one of the nicest facilities that we go to. I like everything about racing at Auto Club."

We're here at Pink's Hot Dogs. Is this your first time here?

"It is, today I got an education about Pinks, I really didn't know much about it," Kenseth said. "It's exciting, a really nice family. A really, really neat place and good hot dogs, too. It's pretty neat to see all of the fans show up for this. I've been having a good time this week."

He's already won two races so far in the 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season. The Daytona 500 win was the 300th race for his team, Roush Fenway Racing.

"It feels great to start off the season that good," he answered. "We had a really strong Speedweeks from qualifying to be able to win the 150-mile qualifier and win the Daytona 500. It's been an unbelievable week."

I also cover the races at the Michigan International Speedway. How would you compare their that to the Auto Club Speedway?

"Michigan and Fontana are close to the same as any two tracks in the circuit," the Roush Fenway Racing driver explained. "There's just a little more banking in Michigan. They're repaving Michigan this year so that's going to change it up a little bit. The tracks are similar, but they still have unique characteristics to them."

Kenseth went into the kitchen at Pink's to make his very own hot dog. It is known as the Daytona 500 Dog and it comes with chopped onions, guacamole, jalapeños, mustard and ketchup.

"It was exhilarating, it was very nice," said Tony Leal, a race fan from Los Angeles. "It was very cool, I had my fill with hot dogs. It was great. It's possible that I might be going to the race in March. Right now, I still don't have a ticket. I probably will be going it just depends on my work schedule. I've met lots of NASCAR drivers. I've probably got about 200 little NASCAR cars. They're all autographed everyone of them. The majority of them are Tony Stewart. I've got Denny Hamlin, Dale Jarrett, some of the old guys, even Richard Childress. I've even got some of them from Matt Kenseth."

The Pink family presented the Daytona 500 winner with his very own Pink's Hot Dogs t-shirt. Kenseth's autographed photo with the Harley Earl Daytona 500 trophy was permanently installed inside the restaurant.

"Yes, I'm looking forward to going to the race," said Lee Conkleton of Los Angeles, who was just introduced to auto racing. "This is my first time meeting a NASCAR driver in person. He signed my hat for me, I got his signature. It is my first autograph signature of a driver. It was a very good experience and many more to come."

For more information or to purchase tickets to the Auto Club 400, call 1-800-944-RACE (7223) or visit www.autoclubspeedway.com.

Related Story: IndyCar drivers excited to return to Detroit and Fontana, Calif.

 

 

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

Auto Club Speedway passed out free posters to all fans at the event.

 

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

Another look at the table with AmericaJR.com's video camera in position on the far left.

 

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

Kenseth made his own hot dog behind the kitchen at Pink's.

 

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

The Daytona 500 Hot Dog comes with chopped onions, guacamole, jalapeños, mustard and ketchup, as selected by Kenseth.

 

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

Kenseth holds his autographed picture with the Harley Earl Daytona 500 trophy.

 

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