Elliott Sadler, driver of the No. 38 M&M's Ford Fusion, qualified seventh for tomorrow's DIRECTV 500. He spoke about his chances after happy hour. ELLIOTT SADLER -- No. 38 M&M's Ford Fusion "I'm really happy with the car. Tommy and...
Elliott Sadler, driver of the No. 38 M&M's Ford Fusion, qualified seventh for tomorrow's DIRECTV 500. He spoke about his chances after happy hour.
ELLIOTT SADLER -- No. 38 M&M's Ford Fusion
"I'm really happy with the car. Tommy and the guys built me a brand new car to come here to Martinsville with and I'm happy with it. We qualified good. It's the best qualifying effort we've ever had here and I think I've got one of the best cars I've ever had here. We're making progress as a team. We've got some exciting stuff coming out for Texas and we're starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel. I think the guys are working so good together and we're getting a lot of information compiled. I think the next month or so is gonna be really fun for our race team."
IS THIS RACE WON ON FRIDAY IN QUALIFYING BECAUSE OF PIT SELECTION? "I think so. Track position here is more important than anything. You can have the fastest car in the world and if you get caught back in the pack, you're not gonna have much luck. The crew chief has to be on his game and you've got to have a good qualifying effort to make sure your guys maybe have an opening coming in or going out. Every little bit helps here at Martinsville. We think we've got a good pit selection for Sunday and we're gonna try to use that to our advantage and try to keep track position and go from there."
THIS PIT ROAD IS TIGHT AND LONG CONSIDERING YOU ENTER IN THREE AND IT STRETCHES ALL THE WAY TO TWO. "This is a tough pit road, one, because you're in the corner so long. It's hard to see out the A-post, where all the guys are running out with the jack handles and things like that and it's very, very narrow. This is by far the toughest pit road we go to, but I'm glad NASCAR keeps the speed limit pretty low on us here because it's a pretty dangerous pit road. It's hard for a driver to win a race here on pit road, but it's definitely easy for them to lose a race here on pit road, so you just have to use your head and not try to be too aggressive. Just make sure you've got good, clean stops and you should be fine."
Matt Kenseth, driver of the No. 17 DeWalt Ford Fusion, was involved in a single-car incident during happy hour when a tire went down going into turn two. Kenseth recovered in time and did not hit anything. Crew chief Robbie Reiser talked about the incident after practice.
ROBBIE REISER, Crew Chief -- No. 17 DeWalt Ford Fusion
THE GOODYEAR CREW JUST LEFT YOUR HAULER. ANY IDEA WHAT HAPPENED WITH THE TIRE? "They're still analyzing it. I don't know. It looks like maybe we had a brake bracket failure or something, I don't really know. We had something going on there, but we're still looking at it to see what's wrong. The tire is flat and we've got some broken parts, so we've got to go take a look at what happened. Did the chicken come first or the egg come first?"
WHAT HAPPENED WITH THE CREW GUYS GOING OUT ON THE TRACK? "They asked the official if they would be able to go out there and the official said they could go, but I guess that's a no-no so they're gonna take their hardcards away."
FOLLOW-UP NOTE: The 17 crew members who went on the track were summoned to the NASCAR trailer and reprimanded. Their hardcards WERE NOT taken away.