DALE JARRETT - No. 88 UPS Taurus (Finished 37th) "It's just racing at Darlington. They were sliding around and Greg Biffle had a problem for a couple of laps and I was trying to go underneath him and we got together. Then I guess Tony got in...
DALE JARRETT - No. 88 UPS Taurus (Finished 37th)
"It's just racing at Darlington. They were sliding around and Greg Biffle had a problem for a couple of laps and I was trying to go underneath him and we got together. Then I guess Tony got in the back of me, but it's just racing. You're slipping and sliding and trying to go as hard as you can, but it's one of those things. Sometimes you win at Darlington and most of the time it wins."
YOU CUT A TIRE EARLY ON AND THAT DIDN'T HELP MATTERS. "It seemed like it wasn't gonna be our day. We had a good car, especially on longer runs, but we cut that tire and got us down. Then we got back in it and on that last set of tires we made the adjustment and it wasn't quite as good. I thought if I could hang on there that I'd be OK and I started passing a few cars and thought we were gonna be OK, but, unfortunately, that wasn't the case."
MARK MARTIN - No. 6 Viagra Taurus (Finished 2nd)
"Pat Tryson is a great cheerleader besides some other things, too. He's pretty incredible. This Viagra team gave me a great car tonight. We just hit it on that last set of tires. The car was incredibly quick and I'm just proud of this Viagra team. This Taurus was fast. We hit it right at the end. I wish we would have had five more laps."
ANOTHER FOUR OR FIVE LAPS. "What a tremendous team I have here with this Viagra team. They hit it right that last run there. Man, I wish we would have had just a few more laps, but it was a great run for us, a great team effort. They were incredible all day on pit road and the car was just a pleasure to drive. It was a great race. I'm really pleased with the way it turned out, but, man it was fast that last 10 laps. I would have liked to have a had a few more."
HOW DOES THIS FEEL GOING TO HOMESTEAD? "It feels good. I knew that we could come and contend to win this one and I know we can go there and contend to win."
DOES THIS GIVE YOU MORE CONFIDENCE? "We tested real fast down there anyway, so we knew that we were gonna be good there and after Atlanta we knew we would be good here."
KURT BUSCH - No. 97 Smirnoff Ice Taurus (Finished 6th)
"We can smile about this finish but our race car wasn't all that sporty. The Smirnoff Ice car was good on specific run, but after that we couldn't find the right setup. It was a great job by the crew today to bring me back up and to give us those awesome pit stops at the end to get us track position. To come home in this position gives us good incentive to go to Miami and do the deal."
YOU'RE NOT MAKING THIS EASY. "This was the worst car I've ever had at Darlington. I'm surprised. It didn't react to any of the changes we made today. The only thing that saved us was our pit stops. It was an awesome day for the pit stops and the crew did a magnificent job. They stepped it up and knew when we had to do it and to gain back those spots we lost here in the spring due to a pit stop. It was a great day."
WAS IT FRUSTRATING BEING IN THE BACK? "I didn't know what the car was capable of because it was a horrible driving race car, but it was a good day for Smirnoff Ice to come on board and showcase what they can bring us next year. Just the way our team pulled together for those pit stops at the end, that's what kept us in it."
WHAT WERE YOU THINKING WHEN YOU WERE BACK IN 14TH? "You still have to race the race track. No matter what position you're in, whether you're 30th or you're second, you have to race the race track."
DOES THIS GIVE YOU MOMENTUM FOR NEXT WEEK? "We've had quite a few things on our side, whether they were in our control or out of our control and we keep positioning ourselves for great finishes. We need to do it one more week."
CAN YOU TALK ABOUT THE END OF THE RACE? "Awesome pit stops. I couldn't have done it without their help and just the focus we've had all throughout this playoff series. It's been a great team effort and to come out with the finish we did today was just superb."
YOU AND JIMMY WERE VERY CALM ALL DAY. "We were cool. We're not gonna throw it away by having a problem communicating with a crew member or between Jimmy Fennig and I. We were on the same page throughout the race and we've got one more week to do it."
PROUD OF YOUR TEAM? "Fantastic. I'm ecstatic to be in this position. If things don't go our way, we still know that we put up a great fight."
THIS HAS TO BE WHAT THEY HAD IN MIND WHEN THEY CHANGED THE FORMAT. "It's awesome. This is what we have now with the points structure, a playoff system where everybody is on edge, everybody has to make those split-second decisions and drive the same way. For us to be in this position is great. We're the underdog. We're the spoiler in one aspect, but yet we've been the consistent guy every race. We need to go and win next week."
YOU SHOWED GREAT CHARACTER THROUGH THIS. "It's great to look at all the other competitors to see how they're handling this. There's no real template on what to do because this has never been done before. We all have to approach it our own way and whoever comes out on top is the best man." YOU AND YOUR CREW WORKED WELL TODAY. "I ran into a guy while the sun was staring me in the eyes. I made that mistake, but they did a great job patching the right-front fender and giving me great pit stops at the end. That's what it takes is a team effort. No matter who far behind you get, stay on the lead lap and keep digging."
GREG BIFFLE - No. 16 National Guard/Subway Taurus (Finished 24th)
"I don't know what happened. I got hit on pit road and my car just wasn't the same after that. I don't know what happened. We were doing good and then we got hit on pit road and tore our right-front fender off. That must have knocked the toe out or the camber or something, but my car was just terrible after that. We don't know what happened. All we know is we got hit on pit road and after that we couldn't do anything."
CARL EDWARDS - No. 99 World Financial Group Taurus (Finished 7th)
THOUGHTS RACING JIMMIE JOHNSON? "I thought, 'We can do this. We can win this race,' but he's an unbelievable race car driver. It's just really neat to get to race with these guys and I hope to race with them for a long time. That's my goal."
A GOOD WEEKEND FOR YOU? "Yeah, it was a lot of fun. We set a track record with our Superchips truck and World Financial Group, that was a big deal for them to be on this car. That was a last minute thing. They had so much fun at Atlanta that they said, 'Hey, we're gonna be on here again.' We need a sponsor full-time for next year or we won't be running this thing full-time."
TALK ABOUT RACING JIMMIE AT THE END. "In my lifetime I haven't had many chances to win a Southern 500, so I wasn't gonna let it go without trying everything I knew how to try. I was a little ugly there in front of Jimmie into one, but I guess ugly is acceptable at that point. I hope he's not mad about that, but it's awesome to see him win the race with everything that's gone on at Hendrick. I was like, 'Oooh, oooh, I'm gonna knock the wall down,' but it was fun."
RICKY RUDD - No. 21 Motocraft Taurus (Finished 16th)
"We had a good car, but no track position. We finally go in position to do something and the 40 car bounced off the wall and hit us. We spun out and lost some laps and the car got beat up pretty badly. I was surprised it ran as well as it did at the end."
JACK ROUSH, Car Owner - No. 97 Smirnoff Ice Taurus
THOUGHTS ON KURT'S RECOVERY TODAY. "He had a little problem where he ran into somebody with the sun in his eyes and that was unfortunate, but he and the team hung together. They're in championship form. They came back and did a great job. It was a great save. They had good pit stops at the end. The car probably didn't have the right four springs in it, but Jimmy worked with the tire pressure and they worked with the track bar and they worked with the wedge and they got it where it was pretty good at the end."
A YEAR AGO AT THIS TIME YOU WERE CELEBRATING MATT'S TITLE, BUT NEXT WEEK IT'S UP FOR GRABS. "Right now, I told everybody that we expect to win and hope to win, but we've got to prepare to lose and how we're gonna deal with the frustration of having it all go upside-down after it's been so good for so long. That's what NASCAR is trying to do. They're trying to create the excitement and the contention and the tension and all that anticipation to the very end and it is absolutely going to be a jump ball. We'll have to see what happens."
AFTER THE ADVERSITY KURT HAS HAD THE LAST THREE WEEKS, HOW DO YOU ASSESS HIS CHANCES? "It's his to lose. He's still got 18 points, but the 48 has just been super the last handful of races. We've got to step it up a little."
ELLIOTT SADLER - No. 38 M&M's Taurus (Finished 23rd)
"We dug ourselves in a hole this weekend by having to go to a backup car during Saturday's practice. Even though we felt good about the car after last practice, we just never could get the handling right on the M&M's Ford today. It was extremely loose throughout the entire race and we never could get it tightened up enough to where it was comfortable to drive. I just hung on for 500 miles and tried to make the most of the day. So, we're just going to go to Homestead and go for broke and try to get another win for M&M's and Robert Yates Racing."