DENNY HAMLIN, NO 11 FEDEX FREIGHT/MARINES MONTE CARLO SS MET WITH MEMBERS OF THE MEDIA TO DISCUSS THE COCA COLA 600, CREW CHANGES AND CAR OF TOMORROW: ON GETTING BREAK THROUGH WIN HERE AT LOWE'S MOTOR SPEEDWAY: "I think it is a good step for us.
DENNY HAMLIN, NO 11 FEDEX FREIGHT/MARINES MONTE CARLO SS MET WITH MEMBERS OF THE MEDIA TO DISCUSS THE COCA COLA 600, CREW CHANGES AND CAR OF TOMORROW:
ON GETTING BREAK THROUGH WIN HERE AT LOWE'S MOTOR SPEEDWAY: "I think it is a good step for us. We didn't run that well in the All-Star race last week but we are coming back with our best car and everything is the best stuff for our team. I think we have a good shot at it, we will know exactly how good a shot we have of winning this thing on Saturday during final practice."
ON HOW MENTALLY DRAINING IT HAS BEEN TO HAVE BEEN SO CLOSE TO A WIN THIS YEAR BUT NOT GETTING THERE YET: "It has been draining but at the same time it has been uplifting because we have been running as well as we. We don't have the wins and that is going to cost us when we go to the Chase but we are competitive. If we win races in the Chase, that will pay enough bonus points, toward that Championship and that is all that matters for us. "
ON DIFFERENCE OF RUNNING 600 MILES VERSUS 500 MILES: "It is pretty tough. Everyone is talking about this race being one of the toughest. I think finishing off at night is a whole lot easier. But, with the speeds picking up, that is tough. Having to run your fastest when you are most tired is something a lot of people don't think about.
"I do think running the Busch car here is one track where we can benefit and learn information for Sunday. But the biggest challenge is patience. We all know that it is 600 miles and we have a long race out there. You can go a lap down and it just isn't that big of a deal. You are going to get the lucky dog. I think that is why this race has long green-flag runs because they know this race is extra long and they have to be around at the end."
"You lose concentration, you lose water from your system. The mental part of it is a lot, just as much of the physical part. You save a little bit at the beginning for sure. Even if you go a lap down early in this race, it isn't that big of a deal at all. Last year we ran up front most of the time and got a top-10. The way we are running this year, we are running a lot better, so I think we should be able to be somewhere in the top three or four.
"The biggest think is to try and get a clear head three or four hours before the race. We have the driver's meeting but after that, no one is really allowed near me. I really don't like to talk to a whole lot of people, friends or family. I just like to take some time to think about what we are going to do strategy wise and meet with the team."
ON WHAT HE HAS LEARNED AFTER ISSUES WITH CREW: "With my team, we are as tight as we have ever been. I feel like I am close enough to them that I can speak out when I need to against or for them. Most of the time I am speaking out for them, nine times out of 10, I am. But when you have situations when you are losing races on pit road, that is one of the situations where it at least should be a given that you should at least be able to hang on to your position, maybe lose one or two. You hate to give them away on pit road. I have done it as much as they have this year, we are going to win them and lose them as a team either way."
ON RACING IMPALA SS FULL TIME IN 2008: "I like it, I definitely think going to the car early is going to benefit our team. We are running really well with it. Right now we have a little bit of advantage on some other teams. It is going to be better for myself and Joe Gibbs Racing, we will just have to see if we can are able to keep on a roll with it."
ON IMPORTANCE OF RUNNING WELL AT CHARLOTTE: "It means more to run well here not only for the fans, but for the families of the guys and ladies that work on these cars. The can come and watch the races."
ON CHEVY DOMINANCE RIGHT NOW: "Well, I think it because Chevy has the best tams and the best drivers when it boils down and you look at it. There are five or six teams that run well every single week who are the big names and those are all Chevrolet teams. That is more the reason than it is that we have better bodies or better engines or anything like that. Until the new R07, we were behind on engines to Ford or Toyota. I think it is more the talent."
ON HENDRICK PERFORMANCE: "You have to not make mistakes and that is what Hendrick has done and that says a lot for their talent. We have saved a lot of the end of the races, we have run well at the end, but we are coming from too far behind trying to make up for the mistakes we have been making. Mistake free races should equal a win."
ON THE CAR OF TOMORROW AT DOVER: "It will be the biggest test for the Car of Tomorrow so far. We will be going as fast as we have ever gone in the car. Aero is such a big deal for those cars; it is going to be interesting to see if guys are able to run behind each other. I know on the short tracks, the little aero we have, it was pretty tough."
-credit: gm racing