Homestead: Stewart - Friday media visit

TONY STEWART, NO. 14 OFFICE DEPOT/OLD SPICE CHEVROLET, met with members of the media at Homestead-Miami Speedway and discussed practice, how the track has changed over the years and other topics. HOW WAS PRACTICE TODAY? "It was good. I was ...

TONY STEWART, NO. 14 OFFICE DEPOT/OLD SPICE CHEVROLET, met with members of the media at Homestead-Miami Speedway and discussed practice, how the track has changed over the years and other topics.

HOW WAS PRACTICE TODAY? "It was good. I was pretty happy with it. I think we are decent in race trim. I think in qualifying trim we were alright. We need to gain a little bit. All in all I thought it was a good session."

HOW DIFFERENT IS THIS TRACK SINCE YOU WON HERE? "It is a whole new race track. It's not even in the same place because of that. The way you drive it; the pace you run; where you lift; that is all different now that they have banking in it."

IS YOUR STRATEGY TO JUST RUN YOUR OWN RACE HERE? "You have to. We're not running their race. We have to run our own race."

IS THERE MUTUAL RESPECT OUT THERE KNOWING WHAT IS AT STAKE? "There always has been. I don't know how long you have been covering racing, but there always has been, there always will be. This isn't the first time somebody has raced for a championship. There has always been that respect amongst the other guys. There are 40 of us going to start the race Sunday that know what's at stake for those three guys."

DO YOU HAVE ANY HOLIDAY TRADITIONS YOU ARE PLANNING? "It changes every year because everybody's schedules get tighter and tighter. It Is harder and harder to get everybody together but we always find a way."

DID YOU HAVE ANY CONFUSION ABOUT WHAT GATE YOU WERE SUPPOSED TO GO OUT FOR PRACTICE, SEVERAL DRIVERS WERE DIRECTED TO THE WRONG GATE, I HEARD RYAN BROKE HIS TRANSMISSION TRYING TO GET BACK TO THE RIGHT GATE? "No, same one we have always used. Ok,"

THERE HAS BEEN A LOT SAID ABOUT SUNDAY'S RACE AMONGST THE THREE DRIVERS, DO YOU THINK ONE OF THE THREE CONTENDERS WILL DO WHATEVER THEY NEED TO DO TO WIN THE RACE AND CHAMPIONSHIP? WOULD THAT SURPRISE YOU? "I think they are all playing mind games with each other. You don't get this far in the season and be in this position by racing guys dirty. I don't see it coming down to the last race guys racing each other dirty."

DO YOU ANALYZE THE SEASON AS A WHOLE OR ARE YOU CONSTANTLY MOVING FORWARD? "You have to analyze everything. It is part of the process. That is how you make your program better."

-source: gm racing

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Series NASCAR Sprint Cup