, NO. 29 GM GOODWRENCH MONTE CARLO SS - FINISHED 3RD:
Post Race Press Conference
On his run:
"It was definitely up and down. We had some issue there. We got both fenders knocked in. We had to pull the fenders out and our car was really sensitive. It got loose there a couple of times. A couple different runs and then we got it tight. Once the shade starting coming it was still a little bit free but better off free. It was a great race. I had a lot of fun with Jamie (McMurray) and Matt (Kenseth) and Kyle (Busch) and Jeff (Burton). We were definitely a few feet from being where we needed to be but I just couldn't quite clear."
On the last 20 to 30 laps and passing Jamie McMurray:
"He was where I needed to be. He was up a couple of lanes then able to stay there in the corner and come back up off the corner. I was having to pinch my car down and I couldn't just door slam him and take a chance of wrecking us both. It was just one of those things where I couldn't run my line and couldn't quite clear him but I had a lot of fun."
It seemed the high side was working better than the low side. Was it from the momentum of coming off the corners?
"I think the high groove was better because the tires seemed like it, they were a little bit harder. I don't think anybody really knows what exactly they are but I know the left side tire was different. It just seemed like the corner speeds were a little bit slower than they normally are here so you could turn and use the banking to help slow the car down and the car got tight in the middle of the corner but you needed them free off. So you just slide them up and down in the corners. I think it was just because of the harder tire."
Jeff Burton was in a similar position as you were yesterday in the Busch race where he was either going to finish first or third but the guy in front of him got behind. Is that a similar assessment for you when you were running second with a guy behind?
"I was going as hard as I could go. At 25 laps to go, all of us were going as hard as you could go. I just try to pass the guy in front of me and the guy behind tries to pass you so that's how it works every lap."
On the resurgence of Richard Childress Racing. Is this another reason why you resigned with Richard Childress?
"I think we've all run pretty good all year. We've had one week where we off there a little bit in California but that's really been about it. We've had a couple of crashes and freak things happen. I think our car has been good. Everybody has put a lot of effort into making our race cars better and trying to make things continue to get better. We're still not where we need to be but we're definitely competitive so we're able to contend, it seems like one of us pretty much every week."
Do you think that if you had the lead your car was good enough to have held the lead?
"My car was good. There was about 25 laps to go and I started reeling Jamie in. He was able to run the line that I needed to run and I couldn't keep the momentum up off the corner that I needed to clear him. This place is tough to pass and you have to time it just right. I was just not able to ever do that. I knew I needed to get around because the 17 was coming pretty hard behind us. I made a couple of mistakes and kind of slid the tires up off a couple of corners trying to get by and stay beside him and I just never could quite clear."
Why didn't you try to nudge Jamie McMurray?
"I think at some point you have to think of the big picture. I was pretty much doing everything I could do besides hitting him. I think this is one of those places where if you hit somebody you're probably going to wreck with them. You can take that chance here."
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