Sunday, March 25, 2001. Bristol Motor Speedway. Food City 500. KYLE PETTY (No. 45 Sprint Dodge Intrepid R/T) "I don't know what broke on it. It's like something broke and then it was like it wasn't broke anymore. Then it just quit, so I don't...
Sunday, March 25, 2001. Bristol Motor Speedway. Food City 500.
KYLE PETTY (No. 45 Sprint Dodge Intrepid R/T)
"I don't know what broke on it. It's like something broke and then it was like it wasn't broke anymore. Then it just quit, so I don't know if it's in the motor or electrical. It's just hard to tell until you get it all apart. I was loose on that second set of tires. I couldn't get any forward bite. The last set of tires was going to be better, but I never really got a chance to run 'em. The 24 and 40 are really good, but the 43 is running good, too. I'll stick around and see what happens."
BUCKSHOT JONES (No. 44 Georgia Pacific Dodge Intrepid R/T)
"It was just one of those Bristol things. We made up a lap and then dropped the car off the apron and bent the left upper control arm. The car never would run as good as before after that. That's Bristol. That's about all you can say about it." JOHN ANDRETTI (No. 43 Cheerios Dodge Intrepid R/T)
NOTE: Andretti's second-place finish was his best ever at Bristol. His previous best was a fourth in the 1999 Food City 500. It was also the highest finish of the season for Dodge. "Elliott (Sadler) did a great job today. Bill Elliott was trying to get his lap back and I don't know if he knew I was in the outside lane. He got me up in the wall, and it bent the rear end in. It was just too tight to battle with Elliott. I ran as hard as I could, but I couldn't keep the front tires under it. We always need these kind of runs. Hopefully we can keep this going. We were sixth last week, second today, maybe we'll be first next week. "We had a great day, and I'm happy for Elliott Sadler. I know how exciting it is to win your first one, and I'd like to find out what it's like to win again. "I don't know if you can call two races a turnaround. I know Kyle and the team has worked real hard to make Petty Enterprises better. It's a tough sport. We came up here and tested. We qualified well. I don't know what happened to Kyle. He ran strong early. My car was flawless. We didn't change one thing all day, and I wouldn't have guessed it after Happy Hour. "It's really not special to finish second anywhere. You're so close when you finish second, and I felt we had a car that was capable of winning today. We had the strategy worked out, ifs, ands, buts, coulda, shoulda, but when it all comes down to it I'm real happy about running second. I'm just happy to come out of Bristol with all the fenders on the car, let alone second place. "I think Elliott should respect history and he should have let the 43 in front of him. I know the 21 won a lot of races, but I think the 43 won 200. I know history, and that's the first thing somebody said to me. I'm just real happy for that team. They've had a lot of lows, and I know what those lows feel like. You get a win, and that fixes a lot of things." WARD BURTON (No. 22 Caterpillar Dodge Intrepid R/T)
NOTE: Burton finished fifth today, his fourth top-10 finish in his last five starts at Bristol. He's finished 11, 3, 9, 9 and 5 in those races. "I feel pretty good about it. Elliott Sadler, a Virginia boy, for him to win his first race here, that's just awesome for the team and for him. The Cat team worked real hard. We've been making some progress, but a top-five here at Bristol is just great. I saw the end result of that last lap deal. The 24 was a little bit better than Tony and I. He just hit him probably. "We had some good two-tire stops today. I like any track the team gives me a good car. We've been struggling, but we made some progress the last three races. I feel really good about that. It was a good points day for us, too. We're getting a handle with the tires. Some of the lapped cars were absolutely crazy today. It's a wonder we didn't have more incidents." STERLING MARLIN (No. 40 Coors Light Dodge Intrepid R/T)
NOTE: Marlin finished 12th, only his second finish out of the top 10 in six starts this season. Entering Sunday's race, he'd also had three straight top 10 finishes at Bristol. Marlin is third in the standings, 48 points behind leader Dale Jarrett. Marlin was tied for second after last week's race, 65 points behind the leader. "We tried a different shock package today, and it just gave out. It was vibrating and bouncing the last half of the race. The car was pretty good, but track position was so important. Some of the guys stayed out and got two tires won the race. I think three or four of 'em got their lap back. The 43 let 'em have their lap back and winded up letting 'em win the race. I ain't letting nobody have their lap back. It's taking money out of their pockets, that's all it's doing. They'd better get smart and figure that out. Ain't nobody getting a lap back from me. "We were decent at first. It looked like the 1 car was a little better than us. We could run the 24 down and the 43. That last set of tires and the shocks, it just was terrible. It was good to see the Wood Brothers and Elliott Sadler win the race. I was glad to see that. "We're third in the points now. Gordon eked by us, but we're still plugging away. We're closer to the leader than we were last week even though we dropped to third. We've got a lot of racing left. We'll go to the house now and get ready for Texas next week." MIKE FORD (Crew chief No. 9 Dodge Dealers Dodge Intrepid R/T)
"We got in traffic early and got bottle necked up and got into the back of a car. That closed our grill up. We didn't want to take a chance of running hot. We came in and took some tape off and gave up all of our track position. The car was a little tight, and the leaders caught us in a hurry and put us a lap down. We fought that all day long. Actually at one point we got two laps down and made both of those back up. We're happy about that. We finished on the lead lap, so it was a good day with ups and downs all day long." STACY COMPTON (No. 92 Kodiak Dodge Intrepid R/T)
"We kept digging, and these guys did a great job. We had a great car, but we fought it all weekend. We never could get it like we needed to, but everything finally came together. We got involved in that wreck on the first lap and got the nose torn off. We kept digging. We lost a lap in the pits. They left a lugnut loose on the left rear. It was just one of them days. I didn't think things were going to go our way, but we kept digging. It was a good day, 41st to 11th. I don't know who gained the most, but that was a good run for us. I've always liked this place. It's been good to us. We just needed a little luck. Today we had a little luck. It was a good day for Dodge, two cars in the top five. I think everybody was a little concerned about the short tracks with the Dodges, but they looked pretty good today." CASEY ATWOOD (No. 19 Dodge Dealers Dodge Intrepid R/T)
NOTE: Atwood was the top finishing Raybestos rookie in Sunday's race. He's now tied for third in the rookie standings with 50 points, 16 points behind leader Kevin Harvick. "It was a pretty good day for us. We finished 20th on the lead lap, but to tell you the truth we're a little disappointed, at least I am. We stayed around 12th all day and felt like we had a shot at the top 10. I don't know what happened at the end. We couldn't get the hang of it. I know I'm trying to be a little bit nicer to everybody than some people. Being a rookie, I don't want to just come in here and beat and bang and knock people out of the way. It was a good day. We stayed out of trouble and kept all four fenders on the car. We learned a lot and ran all 500 laps. That was the main thing. We'll just learn from it. "The most I've ever run around here is 250 laps in the Busch race. This is quite a bit different. You get so many pit stops. In the Busch race you probably pit two or three times. It seemed like we pitted 10 times today. You have a lot more time to get better or a lot more time we get worse. We stayed really good all day. I know this race is going to help us out a lot when we come back here. "That (test) is really what gave us the good run today. We made some pretty long runs, 60 or 70-lap runs when we were here testing, and the car was really good off the truck. The car has been really good through the testing and all this week. I had a chance to qualify better, but we had a miss in the motor during qualifying. I felt like we had a top 10 car, but it just didn't work out for us." -Dodge Motorsports