Crew Chief Doug Randolph Shares His NASCAR & CRAFTSMAN® History

Crew Chief Doug Randolph Shares His NASCAR & CRAFTSMAN® History

Doug Randolph, crew chief of the #16 NASCAR CRAFTSMAN® Truck driven by Tyler Ankrum, reflects on his history with NASCAR and CRAFTSMAN® tools. Randolph shares his go-to CRAFTSMAN® tools in the race shop and on the track.

"The early 1990’s were in my opinion, a Golden era for NASCAR. The heavy hitters such as Dale Earnhardt, Geoff Bodine, Harry Gant, Rusty Wallace, and Bill Elliot battled it out every week for the win. At the time, I had been going to college at the University of Tennessee, while also working for a local Busch Grand National Series driver named L.D. Ottinger. Shortly after I graduated, I got the biggest break of my short career. I was headed to work for the legendary car owner Junior Johnson. This was the shot of a lifetime but there was only one problem, I had very limited tools to do my new job. 
 doug randolph
Luckily for me it was around this time that CRAFTSMAN® had become the official sponsor of the NASCAR Truck Series. As part of that partnership, CRAFTSMAN® had a tool truck that visited every NASCAR shop weekly. This made it so much easier to acquire every tool I would need for my trade. Over the course of a year or two I was able to outfit my CRAFTSMAN® toolbox with every tool needed to perfect my craft. Being a fabricator and a mechanic, I was always testing the durability of my tools. If I ever had an issue with a CRAFTSMAN® tool, CRAFTSMAN® was always there to stand behind their product. 
 craftsman tool
As time went on, that particular toolbox was in my detached garage. In this shop I built headers and tailpipes for several race teams.
Unfortunately, that building caught fire one night; almost everything including my CRAFTSMAN® toolbox and the tools inside I thought were a total loss. The next day as we examined the rubble, I found that CRAFTSMAN® toolbox. The outside was burned, blistered, and a twisted mess. However, when I opened the drawers, to my surprise, most of the tools were still intact. After a good cleaning, I still use those same tools some 30 years later around my home and garage.

craftsman tools

Speaking of good tools, we have a lot of great, high quality CRAFTSMAN® tools around our race shop at Hatori Racing Enterprises and also what we bring to each race track. Around the shop, the first thing we pickup for almost every job is a wrench and especially the ratchet wrenches as well. On a race car, you’re always working in tight places as we’ve engineered the space allotted to us under the body. With that, we are always working in small, tight spaces so we always use ratchet wrenches at the shop. Then at the race track, we utilize a very different set of tools to work on the trucks to prepare for the race. We unload and go directly into technical inspection, then practice, then qualifying and then the actual race…sometimes all within one day. This makes speed and efficiency the most important thing for us and we use fast and efficient tools to accomplish those tasks. It feels like we almost have every CRAFTSMAN® V20* product that has a battery to it.

The additional battery life from the CRAFTSMAN® V20* is really important to us as we utilize fans, leaf blowers, impact wrenches, drills and more when we’re at the track.

It’s imperative for us to keep our tires, wheels, and brakes cool when the truck is standing still along with continuing to keep our garage and work area clean so we utilize the fans and blowers to do those jobs. We use the CRAFTSMAN® V20* impact wrenches for quick tire changes and drills for any body or aerodynamic work that we need to accomplish. The ability to utilize the same style and sized battery for all of those applications even adds to the efficiency and speed within our garage area. During practice, if our tools make us quicker and we can send that Truck back out onto the race track sooner, that means more on-track practice time for us to try new things which may result in a faster truck for that entire weekend. We rely on those CRAFTSMAN® tools to be easy, fast, efficient but also keep our driver and equipment safe. An important job to say the least!"


*20V MAX* battery maximum initial battery voltage (measured without a workload) is 20 volts. Nominal voltage is 18.