KEVIN LEPAGE - No. 66 EAS Taurus (Finished 40th) "First of all I want to thank EAS and Jeff Stec and all of the Peak Motorsports guys for giving me this opportunity. We had a good qualifying run and struggled a little bit in practice and the ...
KEVIN LEPAGE - No. 66 EAS Taurus (Finished 40th)
"First of all I want to thank EAS and Jeff Stec and all of the Peak Motorsports guys for giving me this opportunity. We had a good qualifying run and struggled a little bit in practice and the race, but we were working and trying to make a notebook. This is the first time the team and I have worked together. Going down into turn three all of a sudden the car turned loose. We broke the shock mount in the back and that turned me into the wall, but we got a good notebook for the first part of the race. We were off just a little bit in the corners. I was equal to most of the guys everywhere except for right in the middle and that's where they were killing me, but we've got something to work on. Now we'll get ready for Talladega."
MATT KENSETH - No. 17 DeWalt Taurus (Finished 35th)
"We ran pretty good today. We had a flat tire and came back from that. We made up our lap and I had a pretty competitive car - probably a fifth-place car and just blew a right-front tire. I felt it shaking a little bit for a lap or two and a slowed way down. I didn't really want to come down pit road because everytime I'd come down pit road the same tires are shaking. They tell me it's my imagination and that there was nothing wrong with them, so I decided to run a couple of laps and I should have trusted my first instinct and pitted." HOW DOES THIS AFFECT YOU IN THE CHASE? "I don't know. There's a lot of racing to do. Eight races is a lot of racing to do. We ran good today. I'm happy about that and if it's meant to be it's meant to be. I don't feel like I could have done a lot different today. That piece of debris was right on the race track. With no caution I couldn't miss it. There was no way I could miss it. I got a flat and then blew that right-front, but it's something I don't think I could really control. I don't think I was extra hard on it, so I don't know." IS THIS YOUR MULLIGAN? "I don't know. I'm not even worried about that. I'm worried about trying to win races and run up front. I can only control so much and try to run the best we can every week and see where it ends up. I'm not even thinking about that right now." THOUGHTS ON NEXT WEEK? "I hope I don't hit anything (laughing). It's the same as always when we think about Talladega, but I think we've got better cars than we've ever had for our speedway program. Our speedway program has been a lot better the last couple of years. I don't want to lie and say that I look forward to going there, but I look forward to going there more than I have in the past. I think we can be competitive and hopefully we can be in the lead draft and stay out of trouble." CHARLOTTE AND THE TRACK THERE. YOUR THOUGHTS? "I don't know. I'm gonna leave that in somebody else's hands. All I know is it was one of the best race tracks we went to. It was a fast speedway but drove like a short track. It had a lot of character. It had a few bumps. You could always pass if you were faster than somebody - always. You could always get around somebody and I thought it was one of the very best tracks on the circuit and now it sounds like it's just one of the worst. Hopefully, they'll just bite the bullet and repave and get it back the way it was. The new pavement at Richmond and Homestead was awesome. It came in the first year and it was great. They should probably just bite the bullet and pave it and start over. It would be a great track again." SO JUST TAKE IT ONE RACE AT A TIME. "Yeah, how can you do anything different? You're out to try to win every week. I don't think you can do anything different. You're gonna go out and give it 100 percent every week. I'm gonna walk away today knowing I gave 100 percent. It didn't turn out like we wanted to, but everybody put in all the effort they could. We had a competitive car and were in decent position to get a good finish but it just wasn't meant to be."
MARK MARTIN - No. 6 Viagra Taurus (Finished 4th)
THOUGHTS AT THE END ON FOUR OR TWO TIRES. "That's too hard of a decision for me, so I didn't get involved in that. I just want to thank the fans for giving me the best year of my career. Viagra and all the guys on this team have given me a shot at a championship. They tried to win the race. It maybe cost us 10 points, but that's not gonna be the difference. We can win races and we can still win this championship and this was a good day for us."
YOU WERE IN THE TOP FIVE ALL DAY. "Yeah, she was awesome. It was a great car and got better the longer the race went. It's just tremendous to drive for this team. This whole weekend was right there at the top of the list. They tried to win. I told them, 'I've got 34 wins. Don't do that.' You need every point you can get here, so it'll be OK. I love Pat Tryson for trying to win. He won me a race here staying out just about a year ago or so. I'm happy for him to make those decisions." WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR THE CHASE? "It was a good run for us - a great run for the team. They did a fabulous job. It's an honor to drive for these guys."
ONLY 25 POINTS SEPARATING THE TOP SIX. "There are a lot of races left. I don't need to be talking about it, I just need to be scoring 'em right now."
GREG BIFFLE - No. 16 National Guard/Subway Taurus (Finished 13th)
"That's not too bad considering what happened to us today. We just did what we could and that was all we could do. It was a tough day, but we kind of came back from it and finished 13th. The car wasn't as good as it was in the spring, but it was pretty decent. We just couldn't quite get it done."
ELLIOTT SADLER - No. 38 M&M's Taurus (Finished 6th)
"I tell you what, we had some great pit calls today. The two-tire stop and then staying out. I'm very proud of Kevin (Buskirk). He had a lot of load on his shoulders this weekend and him and Raymond (Fox) pulled together, along with the rest of the guys, and had a great, great day. I'm very proud of how they worked together, not only today but the whole weekend. This is what it's all about. We're either gonna fail together or succeed together and that's the way the 38 team works. To come in here today and run like we did and get the finish we did was great for all of us."
ONCE YOU GOT UP FRONT YOU STAYED THERE. "Yeah, we were fine. Track position is worth a lot. We made a two-tire stop and I got the lead and I was like, 'Wow, this is worth a lot.' My guys also gave me good pit stops again, but, all in all, I'm very proud of Kevin and the job he did today. All of the guys rallied behind him this week. It's been a long week, but it's well worth it to get a sixth-place finish and get ourselves back in the running for 11th place."
CARL EDWARDS - No. 99 Office Depot Taurus (Finished 9th)
"We kind of backed into that one with a top 10. I don't know where that puts us in points, but I think it was a good points day the way everything worked out. We just had some lucky pit strategy. The key for us was coming in and pitting because we were far enough back that every time the caution came out we would pit. We had 10 laps on the leaders and under green a lot of leaders pitted and then there was that yellow and we were in a great position there because a lot of guys went a lap down. That's what did it, plus Bob (Osborne) did a great job of taking two tires when we needed to to ratchet us up and get us in a position." DO YOU FEEL LIKE YOU STOLE ONE HERE? "Oh yeah, absolutely. We didn't deserve to run ninth, but we've had days where we didn't deserve to run as bad as we did. That's how racing goes, but you can't count on that very often. We have to be better here that's for sure."
THE FIRST TWO CHASES HAVEN'T BEEN GREAT, BUT THE RESULTS HAVE KEPT YOU IN IT. "Yeah, I still have a lot to learn as a driver at these type of race tracks but we're making ground up. We were 10th in happy hour here and were really fast. We had great times and that's the best we've been in practice at this place, so every time we come back we get faster and faster. It's gonna take a lot of hard work, but we're ready for it."
RICKY RUDD - No. 21 Motorcraft Genuine Parts Taurus (Finished 12th)
"We were just a little off all day. They worked on it. We got one run and they adjusted it trying to get better and we got bad loose and got lapped. Had it not been for that, we'd have probably been sixth or seventh and we ended up 12th." CAN YOU TALK ABOUT THE END OF THE RACE AND COMING ON STRONG? "The car was as good as the adjustments would allow it. They adjusted on it all race and finally at the end they got it going, but we lost our lap and there wasn't enough time to get it back. But the car was strong."