Austin Dillon seeking top 15 finish Sunday at Michigan filling in for the injured Tony Stewart

  • Article by: STEVE REED , AP Sports Writer
  • Updated: August 13, 2013 - 12:38 PM
Austin Dillon
hide

Austin Dillon

Photo: Charlie Neibergall, Associated Press

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Austin Dillon is keeping his expectations at a reasonable level heading into the weekend.

Dillon said Tuesday his goal is to finish in the top 15 when he fills in for the injured Tony Stewart at Sunday's NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Michigan International Speedway.

"I think that would be where we need to start and anything past that would be a good day," Dillon said. "I'm just looking forward to getting in the car and seeing what I can do."

The 23-year-old Dillon says there's some added pressure stepping in for Stewart, someone he considers one of his racing idols.

But he said Stewart has shown great confidence in him driving the No. 14 Chevrolet.

"Tony texted to say, 'I'm glad I have a good wheel man in my racecar this weekend.' That's pretty special to me," Dillon said.

Stewart is recovering from a broken right leg suffered in a sprint car crash Aug. 5 at Southern Iowa Speedway in Oskaloosa, Iowa. It's unclear when Stewart will return to racing, but in the meantime Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) continues to field his No. 14 Chevrolet SS in the Sprint Cup Series.

There's a chance Dillon could run more races for Stewart while he continues to heal but nothing has been decided.

SHS has not named a driver for the Aug. 24 race at Bristol.

Dillon said he's open to the idea of running more races for SHS, although he wants to keep a balance with the Nationwide Series schedule.

He's currently leading the Nationwide point standings.

Dillon said he feels like running on the Sprint Cup series will only help his chances of landing a full-time ride on the Sprint Cup series in the future.

"There are still some things as far as experience that I'm learning," Dillon said. "I think it's a great opportunity. I want to accept the challenge and go after it."

Dillon called it a "humbling experience" to be asked to drive Stewart's car.

Dillon has run nine career Sprint Cup races. His best finish is 11th earlier this year at Michigan.

Stewart finished in the top five in the race earlier this year at Michigan, so Dillon said he plans to pick Stewart's brain about how he drove the car, but will leave the setup to the SHS crew.

"I told them to set up the car how you think is fastest," Dillon said. "I don't want anything to do with it. I just want to drive it. Tight or loose is all I'm going to give them... They're expectations are low at this point, so you want to go out there and run all of the laps and have a good finish."

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Chicago WSox - LP: J. Guerra 2 FINAL
Cleveland - WP: B. Shaw 3
Pittsburgh - LP: F. Liriano 3 FINAL
Cincinnati - WP: J. Cueto 6
Miami - LP: B. Hand 1 FINAL
NY Mets - WP: J. deGrom 9
Washington - WP: T. Roark 10 FINAL
Philadelphia - LP: K. Kendrick 3
Toronto - LP: R. Dickey 0 FINAL
Tampa Bay - WP: D. Price 3
St. Louis - LP: C. Martinez 2 FINAL
Milwaukee - WP: W. Peralta 11
Boston - WP: C. Buchholz 11 FINAL
Houston - LP: B. Peacock 0
Detroit - LP: J. Verlander 2 FINAL
Kansas City - WP: Y. Ventura 5
Atlanta - WP: J. Teheran 10 FINAL
Chicago Cubs - LP: T. Wood 7
LA Angels - WP: T. Skaggs 10 FINAL
Texas - LP: S. Baker 7
Arizona - LP: V. Nuno 4 FINAL
San Francisco - WP: M. Bumgarner 8
San Diego - LP: T. Ross 0 FINAL
Los Angeles - WP: H. Ryu 1
Minnesota - WP: P. Hughes 13 FINAL
Colorado - LP: B. Anderson 5
Oakland - WP: S. Gray 4 FINAL
Seattle - LP: C. Young 1
NY Yankees 1 Delayed
Baltimore 3
Portland 9:00 PM
Seattle
Winnipeg 34 FINAL
Montreal 33
Ottawa 11 FINAL
Edmonton 27
Calgary 34 FINAL
Toronto 15
Brt Columbia 26 FINAL
Saskatchewan 13
Los Angeles 90 FINAL
Connecticut 64
Seattle 60 FINAL
Minnesota 77
San Antonio 61 FINAL
Phoenix 90
Chicago 79 FINAL
Atlanta 81
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close
Austin Dillon