Homestead: Montoya, Ganassi post-qualifying interview

JUAN PABLO MONTOYA (No. 30 Texaco/Havoline Dodge Charger) "I think I'm a fast learner. Driving the car is no big deal. Driving the car is not the most important thing. The do's and don'ts are the hardest things here. Anyone can put it in the ...

JUAN PABLO MONTOYA (No. 30 Texaco/Havoline Dodge Charger)

"I think I'm a fast learner. Driving the car is no big deal. Driving the car is not the most important thing. The do's and don'ts are the hardest things here. Anyone can put it in the field. You get two clean laps and it's all about the car. I come out of the Busch car today, and I make sure I don't overdrive the car."

WERE YOU NERVOUS ABOUT MAKING THE FIRST CUP RACE? "Yes, it's stressful. You don't get any second chances. One of the hardest things I'm getting the handle on is you go out on cold tires. It takes forever to get heat in the tires and then it's straight down to business. It's pretty cool."

COMMENT ON SOME OF THE ADJUSTMENTS YOU'RE HAVING TO MAKE "When you come from open wheel, you don't understand that the car behind you can affect the car that's in front. We're not used to that. In open wheel, the guy behind gets hold of your dirty air and that's it. You always need to pay attention to your spotter to know if the car is on the outside or if the car is on the inside. You've got to know what the car is going to do, and when you follow somebody you always need to keep your nose clean. All that makes it really hard. I could probably have been running faster than I've been running, but I don't want to make any enemies. I've been really cautious about how you make your moves."

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CHIP GANASSI (Car owner Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates)

"As I've said time and time again we've got about eight of 12 steps. Today was just another step. It was a big step, but it was just another step along the way. We've have six or eight more steps to take before we're ready for next year. This was one. We haven't had him on a road course yet at all. He's going to be in road racing situations and quite frankly I think that's going to be the most difficult for him. I think he's going to have to learn you can't lean on these cars road racing like you can Formula cars. Can you go quickly for a long time? That's a different set of parameters. We're going to be happy (Sunday) if we just run all the laps and run what I call the cycle -- all the laps, all the pit stops. My expectation is for him not to be a factor in the championship. I want to make sure he's not a factor with that. I think it's just another step to get to next year."

COMMENT ON MONTOYA QUALIFYING THE 30 "As stressful as this exercise was today, for him I think it will be invaluable when you look back on it. I think the experience for his learning curve will be invaluable."

-credit: dodge motorsports

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About this article
Series NASCAR Sprint Cup
Drivers Chip Ganassi , Felix Sabates
Teams Chip Ganassi Racing