Parker Kligerman Continuing to Gain Respect in the NASCAR Nationwide Series: Part Three
Here’s the third and final part of our three part exclusive interview with NASCAR Nationwide Series driver, Parker Kligerman.
With a lack of sponsorship this season, the second in a row for yourself on a personal level, do you feel a need to perform well to impress potential sponsors?
PK: “Absolutely, I think everyone does. I don’t care if you have a fortune 500 company right now or you don’t, you have to perform and do it like they’re watching. If you don’t perform, they won’t want to sponsor you. I don’t approach the sponsorship issue scenario with any sort of different approach because in my opinion, the best way to get sponsorship is to go out there, be confident, be fast, be upfront, be consistent and also be articulate on camera. I think all of those things combined together (in my mind), the sponsorship will come. For ourselves, we’re gonna go out there and be consistent and challenge for victories and a championship. Hopefully there will be a company that sees a value in our program and we’ll be glad to have them on board.”
You guys had Bandit Chippers on at Daytona and Bristol. Do you guys have any other potential sponsors lined up for this year?
PK: “You’ll see Bandit on more often than not this season. We also have a sponsor that we’re really close to signing one for about three races that will be a big deal. It’s a new sponsor to the sport and we’re really excited about having them on board. I really think it’s going to grow into something larger. Then we have a couple of other things that we’ve talked about. I think there’s a lot out there. The biggest thing for a program like this is we need to get going to prove ourselves and prove our speed and prove our ability to run upfront and then from there we can have can a lot more to present to ourselves and sponsors. I think you will see a lot more things on that race car this season and there’s no doubt in my mind that we’ll be just fine.”
Do you believe that you have any strong tracks that you can win at more than others?
PK: “I absolutely believe that I have stronger tracks than others where I’ve just been more successful and quick right off of the bat. One of them is the next one coming up, Texas. I’ve become more understanding about the race cars and how I approach each track and have a lot of resources. There’s no race track that I can look at and say that we can’t do well. California (Auto Club Speedway) was a bit of a question mark for me because I’ve only run there once and drove for a really underfunded team and was really a bad situation. So when I came there, I approached it like I’ve never been there before. To go out there and finish in the top-five and had the great run that we had, I think that just proves to me once again that there’s no race track out there that can hold me back.”
What are you going to be doing with your off time as the NASCAR Nationwide Series is off until Texas?
PK: “I’m going up to Connecticut in my new Toyota. In commemoration of that, I decided to go on a road trip and go home up to Connecticut and visit some friends, drive around and have a good time and take my mind off of racing even though that’ll be tough to do. Basically, just relax. I had such a rush of being able to race week-to-week at the beginning of the season and having such a great time building this race team and being a part of this race team and going to race tracks every week that I kind of forgot that we had a few off weeks. I’m trying to stay low key, keeping my focus on going out there and fighting for a championship at Homestead.”
Who do you have winning the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament?
PK: “I’m probably the worst College Basketball predictor there is. I just don’t pay attention to it that much. I only went to college for a year and it wasn’t a college where they really had a basketball or football team. The one I liked was the underdog story, Florida Gulf Coast University.”
What college did you go to?
PK: “UNC in Charlotte.”
Joseph Wolkin can be followed on Twitter at @JosephNASCAR and reached via e-mail at Joseph.Wolkin@gmail.com.