Chevy Monte Carlo SS Drivers Dominate Chicago Jeff Gordon Wins at Chicagoland Speedway JEFF GORDON, NO. 24 DUPONT MONTE CARLO SS - Winner YOU CAN NOW SCRATCH OFF ONE OF THE TRACKS YOU HAVEN'T WON AT YET, AND THAT'S CHICAGOLAND: "What an ...
Chevy Monte Carlo SS Drivers Dominate Chicago
Jeff Gordon Wins at Chicagoland Speedway
JEFF GORDON, NO. 24 DUPONT MONTE CARLO SS - Winner
YOU CAN NOW SCRATCH OFF ONE OF THE TRACKS YOU HAVEN'T WON AT YET, AND THAT'S CHICAGOLAND:
"What an awesome race car Steve Letarte and all those guys on this DuPont Chevrolet gave me today. I hate to win won like that. You know, Matt (Kenseth) ran a great race and we had our troubles in Bristol but that had nothing to do with what happened there. I like racing guys hard and clean. We had an awesome race car - especially on those long runs. On the restart I had a shot at him and he run me down to the infield and I could have spun him then if I really wanted to but I backed out of it and just waited for our car to come into us as good as it was on the long runs and the DuPont Chevrolet was just awesome on those long runs and I started getting some runs on him and he started blocking me again and I got back on the gas so early in the middle of (Turns) 1 and 2 and I don't know if he had to check up or what happened, but he was racing. It's no different than what happened at Bristol. He didn't mean to do that and I didn't mean to do what happened today either."
YOU WERE OBVIOUSLY QUICKER ON THE LONGER RUNS. DID YOU HAVE TO PASS UNDERNEATH OR DID YOU THINK YOU HAD THE POWER TO GET AROUND HIM ON THE HIGH SIDE? "My car was working good in a lot of places but in (Turns) 1 and 2 I had to run the bottom but in (Turns) 3 and 4 I had to run high. I thought that's where we were going to get him. We had the momentum there. He was running a good line. He's a great race car driver and I love racing with Matt. And I knew it was going to be tough to get by him no matter what happened."
THE INCIDENT WHEN YOU GOT THE LEAD IS WHAT EVERYBODY WILL TALK ABOUT. YOU GAINED QUITE A BIT OF GROUND LEADING UP TO THAT. TALK ABOUT THE LAST 25 LAPS OR SO: "Like I said, my car was just so good on the long runs. I know that's going to take away from this win, but nothing can take away from how good this race car was today and everybody that's worked so hard to get ourselves into this position to have a shot to win it. I think we could have won it either way. But I wanted to race him. We got down in there and I had a run on him and he blocked me again and I just couldn't believe he was doing that and then I got such a great run on him you know, I'm not going to back down. I want to win. I want to win in Chicago since I haven't yet and we've got a lot of points to make up to get into that Chase."
"We're hungry. That's obvious the way we're performing out there and as hard as we're working and it's paid off. We're hungry. We want to get in that Chase and we want to be a factor when we get in it."
DALE EARNHARDT JR., NO. 8 BUDWEISER MONTE CARLO SS - Finished Fifth
"I had a lot of fun. It was a real exciting race for me this year; ought to be real excited about what they saw here today. This track is really starting to be a lot of fun. Bunch of grooves run all over it. Quite a good race track we have here in Chicago."
DID YOU HAVE ANY IDEA HOW MUCH FUEL YOU HAD? "Yeah, just trying to stay out of trouble. Lot of fun out there though, lot of great racing up front."
DID YOU SEE WHAT HAPPENED TO MATT KENSETH? "That was on around the corner from me. I couldn't see what happened. It's not a whole lot of fun to be where Matt is right now but he's been on the other side of it too. As hard as it is you sort of have to take it on and suck it up; go to next week."
ON HIS CAR: "Well, I found that top groove in the Busch race. We weren't very good in the bottom - we were okay. We found it again today and I had a lot of great feedback from my team. (Crew chief) Tony Eury made a couple of good adjustments that helped the car."
HOW GOOD WAS YOUR CAR AT THE TOP OF THE TRACK? "I found my groove in the Busch race and what side would work for me pretty early. We made some adjustments on the car and it got tight right about the middle of it. Allowed me to get back up to the top 10 there. It was unfortunate that some guys ran out of gas but it got me a top five."
JIMMIE JOHNSON, NO. 48 LOWE'S MONTE CARLO SS - Finished Sixth
DID YOU HAVE ANY IDEA HOW MUCH FUEL YOU HAD? "Well, No. 20 ran out (Tony Stewart). I would say we were all on the last lap, to be honest with you."
WHEN THEY GO TO A GREEN/WHITE CHECKERED FLAG LIKE THAT, DO YOU THINK THEY SHOULD CHANGE RULES SINCE YOU CAN'T TOP OFF? "I say do change it if the fans would have loved it. You have to plan for 400 miles plus two laps. That's just the way it is."
YOU GAINED SOME POINTS TOWARDS THE CHAMPIONSHIP. IS THIS THE KIND OF THING YOU'RE LOOKING FORWARD TO? "They're not bad days if we can finish in the top 10 still; but we want to win them."
JEFF BURTON, NO. 31 CINGULAR WIRELESS MONTE CARLO SS - Finished Second
"The No. 17 (Kenseth) and certainly the No. 24 (Gordon) were better than us, the No. 20 (Stewart) may have been a touch better but I thought we were about the same as everybody else. All in all, it was a good day. Just a little bit off there but that falls on my shoulders. I got us too tight going into the race and it was hard to ever get it back out."
YOURE NOW FOURTH IN POINTS. HOW GOOD DOES THAT SOUND? "Talk to me in eight weeks about that."
KYLE BUSCH, NO. 5 CARQUEST MONTE CARLO SS - Finished Third
"Hopefully we can keep this momentum going and congratulations to my teammate Jeff (Gordon) there for winning here, finally had a mile-and-a-half. You know, that's pretty good. They tend to struggle there but all in all, for our day, we had a pretty solid effort and we're proud of that. So hopefully that will keep us up in the points and we can keep going."
TRAVIS KVAPIL, NO. 32 TIDE / DOWNY MONTE CARLO SS - Finished 37th
"We just had one of those days. The car was not a 37th place car but we gambled early on during a green flag pit sequence hoping for a caution to get back on the lead lap and it never happened. Instead it set us back two laps and that put an end to a respectable day for us. We worked on our car all day to help it in the center and off the corners and there in the end it wasn't too bad. A gamble early on did not pay off so we have to settle for what we got. It happens sometimes despite how hard you try. We'll put this behind us, learn what we can and go get them next week in New Hampshire."
BRIAN VICKERS, NO. 25 GMAC MONTE CARLO SS - Finished 13th:
"The guys on the GMAC team never gave up today. They earned this finish. We started out strong and then kind of faded toward the middle part of the race, but when it mattered toward the end, they got it right. I thought we could have gained a couple of more spots on that last restart, but the car got real tight. All in all, it was a good day."