GEOFFREY BODINE - No. 11 Hooters Taurus (Finished 19th) "I had a vibration in practice. We changed a lot. It might have been the drive line or something, plus something was smoking so we had two problems. The main one was the vibration and it...
GEOFFREY BODINE - No. 11 Hooters Taurus (Finished 19th)
"I had a vibration in practice. We changed a lot. It might have been the drive line or something, plus something was smoking so we had two problems. The main one was the vibration and it happened right from the start. We had it the other night and hoped we had found it, but I guess we didn't. Something must be bent in the transmission or drive shaft because there was a definite vibration."
MATT KENSETH - No. 17 DEWALT Power Tools Taurus (Finished 3rd)
"That was pretty scary for the longest time. It was good racing, though. Luckily, there was no wreck but it was hard racing and it was a great first day for our DEWALT Million Dollar Challenge car. Me and Jimmie Johnson worked real good together. We both got behind a little bit on our pit stop, but we worked together and got all the way back up through there and got a top five out of it."
DID YOU LEARN ANYTHING FOR NEXT WEEK? "I don't really know because they are two different cars. I hope so. We're gonna try to put this setup in our 500 car after we qualify tomorrow and see what it looks like on Monday."
YOU WERE 10TH WITH FIVE LAPS TO GO. HOW DID YOU GET TO THIRD? "We went up high, Jimmie Johnson and I mainly, and I got behind Kenny Schrader. I got pushing him and Jimmie got pushing me and the three of us stuck together for something like seven, eight or nine laps and that got us up to where we needed to be. Ward Burton gave me a final push to get me the last three spots."
THAT WAS QUITE A MOVE GOING THREE WIDE? "Yeah, it was kind of nuts. Jimmie and I got together after we came out of the pits. We were behind, but we got going and caught the whole pack. I said to my spotter to tell him to follow me and we'll make some holes. They were running the bottom groove and the middle groove, so there was really only one place to go. I went up there and Jimmie went up there. Schrader saw me coming and it reminded me of 2000 when me and Schrader ran way up there, but Schrader pulled up in front of me so us three passed about 10 cars the last five laps by working together."
MARK MARTIN - No. 6 Viagra Taurus (Finished 17th)
YOU TOOK FUEL ONLY ON THE PIT STOP. "We were going for first or last. We felt like our only shot for first place was to do that, so we took our shot. Whether we ran sixth, eighth or 10th, it didn't really matter a whole lot. It's about winning and I think we did a great job. We just didn't have nearly as good of a car as we do for the 500. We only had time to build two cars and we built one real good one and one real bad one. We had to run the real bad one and try to make the most of it. I think it was a great team effort, we just didn't have a car to stay there when we got there."
KURT BUSCH - No. 97 Rubbermaid Taurus (Finished 11th)
"We were real fortunate to make laps up front and get Rubbermaid some good exposure with the new paint scheme. That will boost team morale to get the season off to a good start, but we just didn't have enough at all to hold the guys off at the end."
HOW WAS THE CAR? "Overall, it's fair. I wish it could follow closer to other cars. Other people were able to take advantage of me because I can't follow them too closely."
WERE YOU SURPRISED TO SEE EVERYBODY COME DOWN PIT ROAD AT ONCE? "No because it was whatever it took for everybody to make their run and with the smaller fuel cells we have a smaller pit window, so when somebody gives the hand signal to pit - which we were the first ones - but Junior was in front of me and already decided to pit. So when the 24 decided to pit, everybody came. It was great to have everybody on pit road at once. It was good excitement."
TODD BODINE - No. 54 Army National Guard Taurus (Finished 13th)
"It definitely typical Daytona still - you've got to handle. We were handling pretty good, not great but pretty good. I wasn't having to lift and that's pretty good on old tires. We had a shot to get a top five and Dale, Jr. went in the middle off of two and went three-wide on us and got loose. The back end of his car came up and got our left-front fender and after that it wouldn't draft good at all. It was too tight, but we had a good car. We had a lot of fun. Nobody wrecked and nobody got hurt and there were a lot of chances for that because everybody was slipping and sliding and getting sideways. Everybody did a good job."
RICKY RUDD - No. 21 Motorcraft Taurus (Finished 8th)
"We learned a little bit. We ran that first segment and weren't real good. We just laid back and I think we finished 14th in that first segment. We came in and made some adjustments and then we came on. I don't think we could have won it, but we could have run third, fourth or fifth. We ended up getting bounced back and came back to eighth, but it was interesting."
WHAT ABOUT THE NEW FORMAT? "I don't really know what the first 20 laps is for, I haven't quite figured that out, but I'm glad because it gave us a little time to adjust. Maybe that's what it was for because we weren't very good. We were OK, but we were fading back hard, so they made some chassis changes and it fixed the car. We were pretty good that last segment. Something happened to Rusty. I don't know what happened, but he changed like three lanes on the backstretch. I don't know if somebody hit him or what, but he just made a right-hand turn and hit me in the left-front tire. I thought it popped the tire. I slowed up a minute and went to the back and then came back through there."
HE'S GOT A GOOD DENT IN THE SIDE. "He was like way down in the middle of the race track and I was on the outside and then he changed like three lanes and came up and just drove into me. But something had to have happen because the angle at which he hit me was pretty severe. I thought it popped the left-front tire."