DALE EARNHARDT, JR., NO. 88 NATIONAL GUARD/AMP ENERGY IMPALA SS, QUALIFIED 8th: "We haven't qualified well yet, but we did turn a good lap for the time of day, but I think the track is going to get quite a bit faster. It is going to get pretty...
DALE EARNHARDT, JR., NO. 88 NATIONAL GUARD/AMP ENERGY IMPALA SS, QUALIFIED 8th:
"We haven't qualified well yet, but we did turn a good lap for the time of day, but I think the track is going to get quite a bit faster. It is going to get pretty quick, so those guys going later are going to get a little bit of an advantage.
"I can't say enough about how great it is to work with Tony, Jr. (Eury). The trust factor and the talent that he is, it is amazing to me to be able to continue to work with him. He does a great job with his guys, getting his guys built up, rallying around him and believing in him. I am very fortunate in that respect. We have a good relationship. It is going great. The team is real excited about our future, so am I. We are just all sort of wishing that this season would get going. It just seems like it has taken forever to get started. We just had bad luck last week, we had a great car, just didn't get the run that we wanted. Hopefully this week we will have some better luck, we have a good car.
"The car was better than it was this morning, we had a good car in practice, I just wish we had a better qualifying draw, these guys are going to speed up later. We have a good car, we had a great test, we seem to still have the speed we had in the test and I am pretty happy about that. Just trying to get us a good starting spot so I am pretty happy about that.
"When you have a great team and a great car, you can overcome pretty much everything. I don't know if these cars are any more difficult, it was difficult before. We are going to have some great pit stops to get us out in front of some guys on pit road, which will help a lot. We have a good car. This track you can run two grooves, but we will be able to pass a little bit easier here."
SCOTT RIGGS, NO. 66 STATE WATER HEATERS IMPALA SS, QUALIFIED 7th:
"We have changed the car a lot, just since we have been here today. With what we learned in California and tried to apply for here before we even unloaded here, and I think it helped. What little bit of practice we got today, we really got a chance to identify some trends and see which way the car is going and make some adjustments. Bootie (Barker, crew chief) wanted to be a little more conservative and be safe. I was probably the loose cannonball and sort of pushing for more. So we found a balance very good and able to come up with a good qualifying effort for our State Water Heaters Chevrolet.
"That was a pretty big change from what we had in practice. I probably extracted about 90% speed out of the car. If I had that same setup in practice, I would have known what we had, we could maybe made a small tweak or adjustment. I am just real proud of the guys; we picked up a second from what we practiced. We probably spent too much time in race trim; we know we need to qualify well. We just did two runs in qualifying trim, made some calls to make adjustments so I think it will be a good starting spot for us."
JEFF GORDON, NO. 24 DUPONT/NICORETTE IMPALA SS, QUALIFIED 4th:
"That was just a lot of fun. We had a great car when we unloaded our DuPont/Nicorette Chevrolet, but we got a little off track with our travels and we just couldn't put up a good lap after that. I wasn't sure what we were going to have. But when I came through turn three to come to the green and said 'oh, that felt pretty good'. Drove down in to turn one and I flew through one and two. Unfortunately it got me a little bit faster in to three than I have been all day, so I missed three and four. It was faster than I had been all day, so we left a little bit on the table. I think it is a great lap for us. We have to be very proud for what we have accomplished here because it could have gone either way from the way practice went.
"I have been in struggling in one and two all day so when I went through there like that, I knew we had a great car. I probably got a little over zealous going in to turn three and carried a little too much speed and got off the white line but still carried good speed. The car drove great. I am just really proud of the guys on the DuPont/Nicorette Chevrolet, I am really proud to have Nicorette on the car this weekend."
MARK MARTIN, NO. 8 U.S. ARMY IMPALA SS, QUALIFIED 3rd:
"I love this place. This No. 8 team is just fun to work with and we are having a blast here. I just told the guys, we got a great laugh here, cause I told them that is I had the lap of my life, we will be about 25th and if I don't, it will be worse than that. So coming off the corner, that must be why I went so fast, I guess I didn't know what I was about to hit. We are just having fun. I appreciate driving for Dale Earnhardt, Inc. and the Army."
-credit: gm racing