Overstock.com Racing: Josh Berry Talladega Advance

Stewart-Haas Racing

●  For the first time in his NASCAR Cup Series career, Josh Berry and the No. 4 Overstock.com Ford Mustang Dark Horse will take on the high-banked, 2.66-mile Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway during Sunday’s Geico 500. The 33-year-old native of Hendersonville, Tennessee, has raced twice during the Cup Series’ NextGen era at Talladega’s sister track, the 2.5-mile Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway oval. His first outing at “The World Center of Racing” came with Legacy Motor Club and resulted in a 22nd-place finish last August. He then kicked off his official Cup Series rookie season in the No. 4 Ford Mustang Dark Horse for Stewart-Haas Racing in February’s 66th running of the Daytona 500. Berry held his position in the lead pack until he was spun on pit road, which relegated him to the tail of the field and out of the draft. He finished 25th.

●  Berry has experience at Talladega in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, earning one top-five finish, two top-10s and an average starting position of 10.1 in five starts there with JR Motorsports. Best of his Xfinity Series outings at Talladega was his fifth-place finish from the seventh starting position in the October 2022 race. After finishing 10th in Stage 2, he deftly maneuvered the draft lanes to score a solid top-five.

●  Crew chief Rodney Childers will call the shots for the No. 4 team Sunday, which will mark his 35th career Talladega start atop the pit box in NASCAR’s premier series. In his previous 34 races, Childers’ drivers garnered four top-five finishes, 12 top-10s, an average starting position of 18.3 and an average finish of 17.1. His drivers failed to finish just five of those 34 Talladega races and completed 6,160 (95.1 percent) of a possible 6,478 laps.

●  After last Sunday’s race at Texas Motor Speedway, Berry and the No. 4 team stand second in the Sunoco Rookie of the Year standings, 22 markers behind Carson Hocevar. Berry is 26th overall in the driver standings.

●  ​Overstock.com is back on board the No. 4 Ford Mustang Dark Horse this weekend at Talladega, donning the metallic red and white scheme seen earlier this season at Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas. The partnership coincides with the recent relaunch of Overstock.com, home of crazy good deals that offer quality and style for less. Overstock.com is for the savvy shopper who loves the thrill of the hunt, and it includes product categories customers know and love, like patio furniture, home furniture and area rugs, while reintroducing jewelry, watches and health-and-beauty products.

Josh Berry, Driver of the No. 4 Overstock.com Ford Mustang Dark Horse

How does the chemistry you have built with your teammates off the track help you at a place like Talladega Superspeedway?

“Having good chemistry with your teammates is a really important part of speedway racing, especially on green-flag pit stops. Being able to trust each other and lean on each other to get back up to speed is really important to staying competitive. On track, it can be challenging to stay together, but being able to help each other off pit road is crucial.”

You worked well with your spotter, Eddie D’Hondt, at Daytona earlier this year and managed to maneuver through the field in your first superspeedway race with him. Since then, you’ve had more time to work together and learn each other’s language. How does that change your confidence heading into the weekend?

“Continuing to work with Eddie and just keep having clear communication is a huge help, not just on speedway races, but across all events we will run together. But I feel like I have also become more comfortable in the car with how it feels, using the mirrors, rearview camera and the visuals in the car, which helps me make the moves I need when I need them. Eddie is my eye in the sky and can see things developing in front where I don’t have the vision, so with all of those pieces coming together, I feel comfortable heading to Talladega. We aren’t going to make any changes to our processes because it’s a different track – we all feel really encouraged by the direction we are heading in, and the results will start to come as the season goes on.”

Talk about the precision superspeedway racing takes, and how difficult it is to navigate the field when you’re in the pack.

“Speedway racing is such a unique style of racing and it’s hard. But the same guys manage to be in the front of the field at these tracks and they don’t get there by mistake. Those guys have the experience and the knowledge of how to maneuver the car where they need it to be up front, and that is an important part of it. For me, continuing to build on my experience and mental notebook is a focus of mine. You have to have a strong car, but one that handles well – one that can push and be pushed and execute the strategy to have a shot at the end.”

How do you rebound from a frustrating weekend in Texas, where you had a good car and a chance to be in contention? 

“The biggest thing I focus on is just the consistency and preparation each week to get back on track. You are going to face some tough weekends and you just have to trust the process. I know that if I do the right things long enough, the results will come. We have had fact racecars and we missed out on a lot of opportunities to get some really solid finishes, so I think we are just really focused on trying to eliminate those mistakes and make it to the end of the race, and we know the results we deserve will start to fall in place.”


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