Jeff Burton, No. 31 AT&T Mobility Monte Carlo SS, met with members of the media at Kansas Speedway and discussed on if Chase contenders and non-Chase contenders should race each other differently, on whether the top-35 rule promotes...
Jeff Burton, No. 31 AT&T Mobility Monte Carlo SS, met with members of the media at Kansas Speedway and discussed on if Chase contenders and non-Chase contenders should race each other differently, on whether the top-35 rule promotes aggressiveness, on penalties in the Chase and if they should be minimized during that period, on racing at Talladega next weekend, on hanging back to avoid the big wreck at Talladega, if someone would be able to have a commanding lead at Talladega and if the new cars should have more adjustability.
Select quotes from driver interview:
SHOULD CHASE DRIVERS AND NON-CHASE DRIVERS RACE EACH OTHER DIFFERENTLY? "No, I don't. I think the race track belongs to everybody. I think respect between drivers is important. I don't believe that a non-Chase driver shouldn't do anything that he wouldn't otherwise do for a guy that's in the Chase. I think we ought to race each other the right way every week and circumstances shouldn't change the way you race people. So having said all that, I believe that it's everybody's racetrack. It's everybody's right to have a chance to win and finish as high as they can. People that aren't in the Chase shouldn't have to race other people any differently."
IS THE TOP-35 RULE PROMOTING AGGRESSIVENESS? "The top-35 rule has its plusses and they far outweigh the minuses. As with everything, it's not all positive. I do believe that it is more competitive racing for 35th, 36th and 37th in points than it would be without the top-35 rule but that doesn't make it wrong. I don't think we can blame the points on people wrecking other people or those kinds of things. The drivers are to blame for that. Certainly the circumstances impact the drivers' response and reaction to whatever is going on but at the end of the day, the ultimate responsibility lands on our shoulders."
WHAT WILL WE SEE AT TALLADEGA NEXT WEEK? "We're going to see races that look very similar to the races we've seen at Talladega. I think we're going to see big packs of cars. The only thing that's going to separate the cars in my opinion is pit stops. If you have a bad pit stop you could get separated. The interesting thing about the Car of Tomorrow at Talladega, and I know this contradicts itself, but it's easier to lose the draft and at the same it's easier to catch the draft. It's much more situational. But I believe that if you got far enough behind, I don't know that you'll catch the draft. Even if they are three-wide, two-wide, there's a point of no return where you won't catch it anymore. We still don't understand exactly what that point is. I also saw the possibility where people got lined up, say the top 10 got lined up, and 12 on back was double-file. Maybe the top 10 will pull away. Those are the things that are hard to tell what's going to happen, but I anticipate for the majority of the race, really big packs."
-credit: gm racing