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ARMSTRONG: Ahhhhhh. It will be a deal where when I do retire, from doing this, I'll probably still do consulting or a little bit of stuff, you know. I'm sure I won't be completely divorced from it, it seems that every time I leave a team, the phone starts ringing and it's -- I'm not saying that to brag or nothing -- but it's just that if you're a team owner out there. . .and you want to go drag racing, and it's easy to go buy the pieces and so forth, but then all of a sudden you think, well who am I gonna get to go run this? And when you think about it, there aren't many out there.

Tuners like Tim Richards and Allen Johnson are employed most of the time.

DRO: And the owner wants someone to get them from A to B. . .

ARMSTRONG: Yeah, without exploding everything. That's a decision an owner has to make and when you look around, who isn't working? Who do I get? I wonder about it sometimes, where it's gonna go. There's going to be a period (of time) when guys that are as old as we are -- it seems it's going to happen within a two year span -- will all be gone or quit, and somebody has to take it over. I guess it will handle itself.

DRO: Guys like Mike Green and others.

ARMSTRONG: Yeah, guys who are coming along, Jimmy Tan, Prock and young guys like Teppen. Richard Hogan is working over there with Alan Johnson and I'm sure the young guys will come out of the woods when the time comes. That's why the phone rings. Say McCulloch wasn't working tomorrow or any of them, Dick LaHaie. You know there'd be guys calling them right away, and it's why I was so surprised that Tim and Kim weren't working for anybody for that period of time, because I kept telling Suzy [Arnold] that -- my girlfriend that works for Kenny -- I kept telling her, Man why doesn't Kenny call him? Beard was still there, but I said, "Man, that guy is the guy; at least he's got a budget to work with." He's a good racer, and finally, it came about.

DRO: But Tim Richard's the kind of crew chief that can end up saving a car owner money?

ARMSTRONG: Oh yeah. Exactly. He's easy on cars. The Richards -- they're real sensible guys, so I was glad they went over to Kenny's and it worked for them, 'cause it's a nice situation now. You know, this year or the next year will be (Kenny's) last, that's what he says anyway. But the way the car's running, he'll find it harder and harder to get out.

DRO: You'll have to pry him out of it?

ARMSTRONG: Yeah, I think so. I mean, it was easy to retire when he wasn't doing so well, or make the announcement, because he was probably down in the dumps, but I bet you, now he's winning he'll find it hard to get out of the car.

DRO: Just hand it over to his son Brandon. . .

ARMSTRONG: Yeah, and that's what Garland said recently, he said now Kenny, he's talked, but he's gonna this time to get out of that race car.

DRO: Seems like it was hard for Joe Amato.


DRO: He didn't get a chance to make any departure tour. It just seemed like he was out of it and Darrell Russell was in.

ARMSTRONG: And Joe's still there at the track.

DRO: He doesn't seem real happy.



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