JAMIE McMURRAY (No. 42 Texaco/Havoline Dodge Charger) -- Finished 4th "We went back to Donnie's (crew chief Wingo's) hotel room Friday night, and he had all of his papers laid out and just kind of put together some stuff we'd run in the past. As...
JAMIE McMURRAY (No. 42 Texaco/Havoline Dodge Charger) -- Finished 4th
"We went back to Donnie's (crew chief Wingo's) hotel room Friday night, and he had all of his papers laid out and just kind of put together some stuff we'd run in the past. As soon as they dropped the green flag the car was good. We took a little gamble at the end. Chip (Ganassi, team owner) is always on us about trying to do what we need to win races. The guys on two tires earlier had some success. Track position was more important today than ever. The new spoiler rule, I'm not a very big fan of it. It's just really hard to pass guys, and some of the guys you just run right up on their bumper and you can get them loose. I did it to Kasey Kahne and I didn't mean to. It's going to take a while to get used to this, but track position is big. We had never run well at Daytona. Last year I think we ran third at Rockingham, and I think it just kind of puts you back in the middle of the points again. When it's early on like that, if you can get a top five it seems to really boost you. So, we'll go to Las Vegas and take the same car and should have some success."
WHAT DID IT TAKE TO RUN WELL AT THE END? "We just really messed with air pressure all day. All of the adjustments we made we kind of had to go back on. We just kept working on air pressure, and when you get out in clean air it's just amazing how much faster you can go. I really didn't think the guys without tires were going to be any good. I felt like we'd catch them and then the guys with four tires at the end would come on. It worked out for us. Clean air was more important today than ever."
COMMENT ON NEW SPOILER RULE "I'm not a very big fan of the spoiler. It's really hard to pass. When you get up underneath the guy you get tight and you have to put so much wheel on it that you get loose, and then you don't have anything back there to help you. The Busch car was definitely a lot more fun to drive yesterday. It was a lot easier to drive at least. Maybe they'll look at that and we can go back and do what we did last year."
COMMENT ON LAST PIT STOP "I didn't think anyone would stay out. Honestly, the No. 16 and 97 were two of the better cars all day. They could take that chance. Track position was big, and when we left the pits first and there was only three or four cars ahead of us I didn't think it was going to be that hard. I thought, 'This will be no big deal. We'll get right out and go.' But these guys were good on no tires. I don't know."
CHIP GANASSI (Car owner Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates "How 'bout that 42 car? We're happy with the car. It was a great run, and I think we're making progress with the Charger. We took a little gamble at the end, but you've got to take a few chances every now and then. All-in-all, it was a pretty good race."
PAUL ANDREWS (Crew Chief No. 45 Georgia-Pacific/Brawny Dodge)
THAT WAS THE SECOND STRAIGHT TOP 20 FINISH FOR KYLE PETTY "It's our first step. We feel like these first five races when the points are really open we really need to be conservative and come out and finish every race. It wasn't a spectacular finish, but it's what we need to do. We're happy with 18th. We can take that and go on to the next two races and build on that as a group. We had a good day. We had a little overheating issue at the end with paper on the grille and we kept having to pit and spend a little more time on pit road than we needed to. It was a dirty track. The last time we came in we had a hotdog wrapper or something equivalent to that covering one whole side of the grille. It was just a dirty track issue today.
"The 43 had some issues today. He smacked the wall once and had a flat under green. He ran over some debris. They had a lot of little issues that hurt 'em. They were making progress at the end of a long run, and that's our goal, too. I think it's just wait and see now. We're building both teams and we'll see what happens. We're going to get through these first five races and see where we are. Hopefully we'll keep improving each week."
JEREMY MAYFIELD (No. 19 Dodge Dealers/UAW Dodge Charger) -- Finished 28th
"I don't know what happened. We were great yesterday and qualified good and they threw the green flag and it was like, 'wow, where did this come from?' I don't know if the track changed or what. We just missed it and couldn't get it back quick enough. We were loose, loose, loose. It was weird loose. You'd touch the gas and it would want to stand up and turn on you. We've got a lot of good people. We'll figure it out."
RYAN NEWMAN (No. 12 ALLTEL Dodge Charger) -- Finished 9th, 12th in standings
"We overcame a lot. We had a really good car. In general for the long run, we probably didn't have one of the fastest cars from the start, but we had one of the fastest cars at the end of the run. Fortunately we made it to the end. We took four on the last stop because we were the Lucky Dog and that's all we could do. I'm happy we got a top 10 after the things we went through. We cut a right front tire. We overheated and got caught for speeding. We got the Lucky Dog twice. It was a pretty big day in some aspects. It wasn't bad for the big picture, but it wasn't the results we wanted.
"Overheating was primarily because of all the trash on the racetrack. If we didn't have people throwing trash out there and actually had people picking stuff up it would be a lot better and we wouldn't have to worry about that.
"I know it had to be close (on speeding penalty). I was in a stall where if I just left and hauled the mail I thought I was going to be all right. It never even crossed my mind for the potential for it because of the stall I was in and doing what we were doing. Rpm's are fine. I just messed up. I think we're holding our own, but in general the new aero package could be better. The cars are all skating around. Short track racing would be a lot more fun."
RUSTY WALLACE (No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger) -- Second Straight 10th place finish. Tied for seventh in series standings.
"I'm still wanting more. That wasn't a good run at the end. We didn't take tires. We should have taken tires. We did everything wrong when it came to making tire calls today. We did two and we should have done four. We did none and we should have done four. We got our butt beat because of that. We've got a big problem with the nose right now. It's packing rubber in it. Our motors are overheating like crazy. I feel like we're going to have to ask NASCAR to get the top of the grille cut back a couple of inches and put some angle to it. All day long I was 240 and 250 and every pit stop packing stuff out of the grille."
KEN SCHRADER (No. 49 Schwan's Home Service Dodge Charger) -- Finished 14th
"That was a good run and a great finish. The car handled great, and you've got to have a good handling car to get a good finish these days. It was a lot of fun out there today. Hopefully we can learn from this and keep improving."
BILL ELLIOTT (No. 91 Stanley Tools Dodge Charger)
"I got in the wall early with Ricky over on the backside. I shouldn't have put myself in that position, but our Stanley Tools Dodge Charger was kind of on the tight side anyway. Then I got into the wall over there, and it really messed the car up. Then we blew the right rear tire getting into turn one. I hate that our day ended so early. We had more for them today than that, but we'll have to wait until next time to get it done."
KASEY KAHNE (No. 9 Dodge Dealers/UAW Dodge Charger)
"We had a super racecar in practice all week, and it just wasn't the same racecar today. We were working on it trying to get it better and better and something snapped there. That wasn't why I wrecked. I just screwed up getting in. I hope we can get back in. It's a big weekend for Mountain Dew and Dodge, and we were hoping to have a good showing. We've got to get back out there and get some points now.
"I just lost it getting into turn one. I basically did it all by myself. McMurray was coming down the bottom, and when I when I went across in front of him I just lost the back end and spun around and hit the wall. We were real loose in the center throughout the race. We were trying to get it better, and I just lost it getting in. It hit pretty good. I'd say it'll take a little while to fix it, but these guys do a good job and they'll probably get us back out.
"We had gotten the car better, but it was starting to get loose again, so we need to go back and figure this deal out. It's really disappointing. We could still be out there. We didn't need to wreck it like that. If we could have made it through that corner, I think we could have run in the top 10 if nothing broke. We had a bad vibration that happened about six laps before that, so I don't know what was going on with the car but something was wrong with it.
"It didn't seem like a factor when you were around cars (new aero package). I didn't feel much difference. These cars have a lot less grip than they had before. I don't see it being any good for us really. I think it's going to make it really tough to race. I think it's going to be really spread out, but I might be wrong."