Racingone On One: Matt Kenseth

Matt Kenseth was recently in south Florida to help promote Ford Championship Weekend at Homestead-Miami Speedway. RacingOne had the chance to talk with Kenseth about a number of topics along with competing against him in a high-speed karting race.

RacingOne: You have to be excited about coming back to Homestead-Miami Speedway. Not only are you the defending Ford 400 winner, but your team has enjoyed a bunch of success at the track.

Kenseth: I always look forward to going to Homestead for a lot of reasons. It's the end of the year and the champions are crowned there. You always hope to be in the championship chase when it comes down to Homestead. It's also the site of our last win too, so it's been a while since we won a race. It seems to be a pretty good track for us (Roush-Fenway Racing).

RacingOne: With Ford sponsoring championship weekend, you own a couple of Ford muscle cars. You recently picked up a new Shelby GT500KR for your father. Has he been enjoying it?

Kenseth: He's been driving it a little bit everywhere. Every time I see him, he's wide open and spinning the tires. He's been having a good time.

RacingOne: Do you still have the Ford GT you received for winning the 2003 Cup Series championship?

Kenseth: I still have the Ford GT. I don't drive it much. I drive it a couple times a year. It's my favorite car that I own.

RacingOne: You recently took a street car to NASCAR night at the zMax Dragway in Concord, North Carolina. What car did you take and what did it turn?

Kenseth: I have a Ford Mustang GT 500 that's pretty much stock and I brought that out there. It ran really good for a stock car, but some of the guys out there were getting carried away with some of the stuff they brought. It did OK, it runs like a 12.8, which I didn't think was bad for a street car with street tires.

RacingOne: Your teammate Greg Biffle was also there, correct?

Kenseth: Yes. Biffle was totally out of control. He had his Mustang GT 500 and I have no idea how much money he had in that thing. He had slicks on it and a big blower and all kinds of stuff and he ran pretty fast.

RacingOne: Your son Ross had a successful season in the Big 8 Late Model Series. How special was it for him to the win the Oktoberfest event at LaCrosse Fairgrounds Speedway where you won 15 years ago?

Kenseth: It's pretty cool. He has been doing really well up there. He's been running Late Models in the Big 8 Series. He's been doing a really good job and having a lot of fun with it. My Dad and everyone have been having a lot of fun with it too.

RacingOne: What kind of path would you like to see Ross take if he decides racing is what he wants to do?

Kenseth: I don't know. As long as he's having fun with what he's doing. I don't really push him into anything or shy him away from anything. Right now he's got good grades and he's a good kid and he's behaving. He's having a lot of fun with that racing so as long as all that continues in that direction I'll pretty much put him in what he wants to run to a point.

RacingOne: Does Jack (Roush) have his eyes on Ross for the future?

Kenseth: I have no idea.

RacingOne: With Ross' car being sponsored by Farm and Fleet you had the opportunity to film a commercial with him. Can you talk about that?

Kenseth: It was fun not just because it was with Ross, but because it was with my Dad too. My Dad has never done a commercial and Ross has never done a commercial. We never, all three of us, have done one together so that was a lot of fun. When I started that Late Model team for Ross we called it Generation 3 Motorsports. My Dad, Ross and I all started in that type of car at the same track up in Wisconsin. We call it (the team) that and Farm and Fleet dug that and did some Father's Day promotions and some other stuff. It has been a great sponsor for him and for me.

RacingOne: Does your Dad still promote races in Wisconsin?

Kenseth: Yes. He's been doing a couple every year. He's been doing the one at Madison and the one at Milwaukee. Both of those races went pretty well this year. He's been promoting those races and then he goes racing with Ross pretty much every week when he races.

RacingOne: I've heard from a lot of people that Slinger Speedway in Wisconsin is your favorite. Is it?

Kenseth: I don't know if it's my favorite. It's definitely one of my favorites. I have had some fun there. That's one of those tracks that things can go really good or really bad for you. It's a real challenging little track that's for sure.

RacingOne: What's your favorite item in your racing museum in Cambridge, Wisconsin?

Kenseth: I don't know if I have something in there I don't like. There is a lot of really cool stuff there. My first race car is pretty darn cool that I was able to get that back. It's pretty much in the exact shape I raced it in. That's really neat and special. It's been 20 years since I ran that car, which seems like a long, long time. We also have the car we won the Cup championship in the last Rockingham race.

RacingOne: What's your favorite moment from racing Robbie Reiser in the early 90s?

Kenseth: Man...that was a long time ago. Probably when we won this big race at the end of the year at Madison. He was leading and we passed him for the lead and we finished first and he finished second.

Note: I had the chance to race Kenseth and other media members in a 15-lap race at Xtreme Karting in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. I qualified third and finished third behind winner Joe Castello of XM Radio and runner-up Kenseth, who qualified second. Homestead-Miami Speedway Track President Curtis Gray finished fourth, the last car on the lead lap.

RacingOne: Joe looked fast. Were you able to get up there and run with him?

Kenseth: On the start I was, and then they threw a yellow. Then we got stuck in lap traffic and he just left me.

RacingOne: Did you do any dirty driving out there?

Kenseth: I spun a couple guys, but I think they deserved it. Was it you?

RacingOne: No.

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