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Austin Dillon talks NASCAR, fatherhood and Panthers football

Dillon punched his ticket to the NASCAR Cup Series playoffs with a win at Texas Motor Speedway in July

2020 has been a busy year for Richard Childress Racing driver Austin Dillon. In June, Dillon and his wife Whitney welcomed their first son, then in July he punched his ticket to the 2020 NASCAR playoffs with a win at Texas Motor Speedway. Now only six regular season Cup Series races remain until the playoffs, where Dillon is looking to capture his first Cup Series Championship. 

WCNC talked with Dillon about the NASCAR season, fatherhood and Panthers football.

Q: “Now that you’ve had a few weeks to reflect on your third Cup Series win what does it mean?”

A: “It's a lot of relief for everyone in the shop, your friends, your family. Everybody is just very happy. It's a total mood changer. That's what so special about winning in NASCAR because only one person gets to do it every weekend out of 40 cars. It's hard. It's very difficult. That one meant a lot too because of the way we won it.”

Q: “Switching gears a little bit, back in June you and your wife Whitney welcome your first son what has it been like being a dad for the first time?”

A: “It's been awesome. Whitney has absolutely crushed it. This morning we had him out on the golf cart. He likes to ride on the golf cart. He goes right to sleep as soon as he hears a gas-powered motor so I'm a little scared about that. It seems like his best place too when he's a little ornery. We put him on the golf cart and give him rides and he falls asleep so that means he's comfortable with an engine. It's been a lot of fun.”

Q: “I know you're a big Panthers fan, so I want to talk a little football with you. I know you're good friends with Christian McCaffrey. What's that relationship been like and how would you describe your friendship.”

A: “It just keeps growing. He's at a good point in his career. He just got his first contract done. I feel like the first couple years you're just kind of wondering what's going on and you’re so focused. He's a very focused person. It's very inspiring the amount of work he puts into his craft. It's inspired me to make me better too, just watching how he does things and goes about his daily routines.”