JIMMIE JOHNNSON , NO. 48 LOWE'S CHEVROLET MONTE CARLO MEDIA Q&A'S (ON THE NEW RULES AND IMPOUND PROCEDURE) "I think it's a good idea -- especially if it allows us to stay home and have another day at the shop and let the crew guys have ...
, NO. 48 LOWE'S CHEVROLET MONTE CARLO
(ON THE NEW RULES AND IMPOUND PROCEDURE)
"I think it's a good idea -- especially if it allows us to stay home and have another day at the shop and let the crew guys have another day off the road. I think it's very important to have it on restrictor plate races. There is no need for us to spend the time and money we do to run two laps at Daytona or Talladega. We could save all the teams a lot of money -- or some huge number -- if we started the impound process there. I'm hopeful of seeing it there. I think we need it on the plate races more than anything and if we see it thoughout, I think it's good. It keeps us focused on the right thing and it's going to raise the level of competition. Everybody is going to have more of an opportunity to work on their race set up and qualifying isn't as important in that respect. You've got to worry about race. I think it's a good move."
(DO YOU THINK THIS WILL BE AN ADVANTAGE FOR YOUR TEAM?)
"I don't know. I think so. I don't think it'll benefit anyone too much. When I was a rookie, I wished I had more practice time to work on the race. That was the important thing. I think that would help the rookies coming in and the under funded teams. But at the same time, the experienced drivers and the well-funded teams want to work on things as well. I don't really know what to make of it."
(ON THE GROWTH OF NASCAR IN THE WEST)
"It's definitely growing. I'm happy to see it. I can remember trying to find a NASCAR race to watch on television when I was growing up. Now there are all these races on the west coast. It's a great thing. There is a huge racing audience out there on the west coast. They all know about dirt racing, but very few of them know about asphalt racing."
(ON NIGHT RACING AT PHOENIX AND CALIFORNIA)
"It's good. I really enjoy it. Hopefully it's a true night race. Starting a race late in the afternoon and racing through the sunset is really hard on us. Here at Fontana it's virtually impossible to see. I had my spotter spotting in front of me going into the turn just to help me find the corner because I was totally blinded. As long as it's a true night race I think it's better for everyone. The fans love it and the drivers love it."
(ON CHANGING THE DAYTONA 500 TO A 5PM START TIME)
"I don't have any objections with that. I think Daytona is a great place to have a night race. Some of the races we saw there like the Shootout at night when the track was a little more forgiving was some of the better racing we had. I don't have any objection. The 400 is always a good race there (in July) at night. We all have to get as much exposure as we can. Our sport is growing so much that none of us want to see it flat line. So if it means we have to start at 5p.m. to get the best audience, then that's what we should do."
(ARE YOU AND TONY STEWART OKAY WITH EACH OTHER?)
"Absolutely. It's amazing. We're racers. We're out there working our tails off and we're not always going to agree with each other. This is how it is -- especially when we're coming to the checkered flag and we get out of the cars immediately after that. We all deal with it. It happens five or six times during the race. But at the end of the race when the cameras are running and we're climbing out of the cars mad without having a chance to cool down, it makes for great television. But that's all it really is. We went into the trailer and spoke our differences and started laughing after a while and came out the back side (of the NASCAR trailer). We talked about holding hands coming out just to give a good media shot for everyone (laughs). It's great that we have the exposure we do. But I just don't want to see our sport have too much controversy. But we're real people with real emotions and we're not always going to be happy. As long as we can keep it in prospective, that's the best thing."