Casey Mears, No. 25 National Guard/GMAC Monte Carlo SS met with members of the media at Lowe's Motor Speedway and discussed racing for a win at Charlotte, helping his teammates, his feeling about next year, transferring momentum from this team to...
Casey Mears, No. 25 National Guard/GMAC Monte Carlo SS met with members of the media at Lowe's Motor Speedway and discussed racing for a win at Charlotte, helping his teammates, his feeling about next year, transferring momentum from this team to his new team, his feelings about the new car, what he would change about the new car, winning the Coke 600 and how it helped his momentum, on the significance of a first win, where he put his trophy, how happy his parents were after his first win, the replay of his win, what is different about this race than the Coke 600, moving over for Kyle Busch at Dover so he could gain Chase points, how his team has improved and open-wheel drivers coming to NASCAR.
Selected quotes from driver interview:
HOW CAN YOU HELP YOUR TEAMMATES IN CONTENTION FOR THE CHASE? "You can't really help them, you just try not to hurt them. I think that there really isn't a whole lot you can do. We're out there to go racing. The only thing I can do is if they're catching me and they get to me, maybe let them go by a little bit easier rather than hold them up for three laps. Beyond that, there isn't a whole lot I can do. We've just got to go out and run our race and we're out here to score as many points as we possibly can too and we're really trying to get to that 13th spot. We've had discussions about that and everybody understands where we all stand. The biggest thing you try to do is not hurt them."
FOR THIS RACE OPPOSED TO THE COKE 600, WILL YOU MAKE YOUR MOVE SOONER? "No, I think the only thing that changes is the middle part of the race. The way that you approach the beginning of this race is still very similar. There's just less time in the middle of maybe riding a little bit, just not giving it 110% where you're kind of conserving just a bit. That time where you start getting geared up for the end of the race starts a little bit sooner but in a lot of ways, you approach it the same way you do the 600. It's just not quite as long."
AT DOVER, YOU WERE RUNNING FIFTH AND KYLE BUSCH SIXTH, AND WERE ASKED TO MOVE OVER BECAUSE HE WAS IN THE CHASE AND YOU WEREN'T. WAS THAT HARD FOR YOU? "Oh yeah. I'm a competitor. I didn't sign up to drive race cars to go backwards, I signed up to go forward. You don't ever want to have to do something like that. At the time they asked me to do that, my first thought was 'hey, that would be the right thing to do' when you think from a team's perspective. At the end and after I did it, I was a little bit frustrated with it. We've talked about that and I think everybody knows where I stand and I know where the team stands and anything that I can do to not hurt the team is probably important. And at the time we gave Kyle five points - I guess it's four or five points for those positions - and it was with intensions of helping them be good in the championship. When you see next week they get taken out and they lose 120 points, (you think) 'how much did my five points help, and I lost the top five'. So I don't know. I guess at times it's frustrating but I think that for the most part, we all understand where everybody's at. If I can do something to help those guys I think that, like I said, in the middle part of the Chase we're focused on doing that and not really worried about that. The thing is is that my teammates run so well so if I'm inside the top five, nine times out of 10 there's going to be one of those guys behind me. We're just going to go racing and whatever feels good at the time, I think towards the end of the year, some of that stuff will probably come into play a little bit more but for right now we're just focused on having good finishes."
-credit: gm racing