Quotes from: DALE EARNHARDT JR. / Driver, ...
Quotes from: DALE EARNHARDT JR. / Driver, #8 Budweiser Chevrolet:
On the unpredictability of Bristol:
"When you're running for the Chase, you're always looking at the races coming up on the schedule and how you typically do at each of them. Some races you feel confident about, some you don't. Bristol you don't really know what to think because even good cars can finish bad there. With the exception of the road courses, this is the race that probably makes all the race teams the most nervous. It's just so unpredictable. You know you've got to be lucky and good. We're a team that is on the bubble right now, and we don't really have room for error. I do my best not to worry about it."
What is better to have at Bristol -- patience or aggressiveness?
"Depends if it's the last 10 laps or not (laughing). You try your best to be patient and keep the fenders clean during the race, because 500 laps is a long time at that place. But it's hard, man. It doesn't take much to lose your cool. I've lost it many times there. I've been the wrecker, the wreckee, and the innocent victim in other people's wrecks at Bristol, and your tolerance gets tapped out in all those situations. I think the only person that leaves Bristol happy is the winner. But then I think back to when Daddy wrecked Terry Labonte as Terry crossed the finish line to win the race, and he probably wasn't too happy either."
On your craziest Bristol moment:
"I don't know, they all seem crazy to me. Obviously my favorite moment was when we won there (2004). My first time there in the Cup Series was kind of crazy. I was in a wreck on the very first lap, and then wrecked again later in the race. I couldn't buy a break that day. It was really frustrating. But some of the craziest moments don't involve me, but I get just as much enjoyment as the fans do watching them unfold. Bristol is just a crazy place."
Your mindset leading into the final three races of the "regular season":
"We maintained our ground at Michigan this past weekend. We gave up a few points, but nothing spectacular. We'll go into this weekend the same as any other weekend -- run as hard as we can, get the car as good as it can possibly be, and have a good time doing it. We want to be in the Chase worse than anybody, and we're going to do our best to get in. We know we've got a lot to work on."
Dale Earnhardt Jr. and the #8 Budweiser team enter the Bristol race weekend 10th in the Nextel Cup point standings after a sixth-place finish at Michigan on Sunday. With three races to go before the Chase begins, Dale Jr. is in 10th place and in Chase contention by 49 points over 11th-place Kasey Kahne. Only 50 points separate him from sixth-place Jeff Gordon. In 23 races, Dale Jr. has one win (Richmond), six top-fives, and 10 top-10s.