Michigan II: Mayfield, Labbe - Dodge interview

JEREMY MAYFIELD (No. 19 Dodge Dealers/UAW Dodge Charger) "Just relax and do your deal and that's really all you can do. If we do all we can do that's it. As a team, if we perform like we've been doing and everybody does their job that's all ...

JEREMY MAYFIELD (No. 19 Dodge Dealers/UAW Dodge Charger)

"Just relax and do your deal and that's really all you can do. If we do all we can do that's it. As a team, if we perform like we've been doing and everybody does their job that's all you can do. Whatever happens in the points happens."

"Every day around here is like Russian Roulette. You never know. Every time you go to the track it's get all you can get. It's not totally like Russian Roulette, but Bristol is kinda that way. You're in everybody else's hands there. Anything can happen and you can get in trouble pretty quick. You just have to do the best you can. I like Bristol. I've always seemed to run pretty decent there. I feel good about going there."

"We don't want to be talked about. We go to the track and race and that's all we want. We don't want to make movies and all that stuff. We're here to race, and that's the way I look at it. When you perform good and get attention that's great, but how would you like to not be performing and get all the attention? That looks bad, too. I'm pretty happy with what we've got going on."

"That's what Jimmie Johnson did last year (hit a hot streak like Tony Stewart's on now). That's the way it is in this sport. The way it's set up now, but that's part of it and everybody knows that. I'm sure Tony just wants to get as much as he can. He's winning and that's the way you get points."

"It's all about consistency, and that's the way it's been forever. You can win the battles, but it doesn't matter unless you win the war. The key here at Michigan is to have a great handling car all day, get good fuel mileage and good pit stops. It's the same everywhere. You do the best you can, be there at the end and have a shot to win."

"This place seems a little slicker, a little rougher and doesn't seem to have as much grip as California. California is getting that way now. It's starting to lose its grip a little bit, but as far as the shape of the racetrack it's about the same. If you're good at one you should be good at the other, but that's not always the case."

"I'm not going to count anybody out (of The Chase). Look at us last year. We were 14th or 15th going into it (last race). It's so close right now anything could happen, and you never know when it's going to happen. It'll go down to the wire. Who knows what's going to happen?"

"The pit crew has been real consistent this year. They're not making big mistakes. When they make one they overcome it, and that's what the whole team has been doing. They're good under pressure and that's what you need."

"We had a great car at Indy and we thought we were to that next level. With 20 or 30 to go we were getting ready to pass Tony for the lead and we got tight. We'll just keep doing what we're doing. We're getting better as a raceteam, and when that happens you'll see fourths turn into seconds and seconds turn into wins. You can't rush that. You've got to let it happen and let it build."

"Once we get to The Chase it'll be a different deal. You can race all out. You've got nothing to lose. Right now we're bouncing back and forth. We could be in or we could be out. You've got to play it safe. Like last week, I could have maybe finished ninth or 10th. We got mixed up with Nemechek and I backed off. That was better than taking a chance on wrecking. You've got to do that now. Racing smart is the big thing, don't make any mistakes. Hopefully everybody around us will do the same thing. We went through all this last year, and I think that's going to help us stay focused on what we've got to do this year."

SLUGGER LABBE (Crew chief (No. 19 Dodge Dealers/UAW Dodge Charger) "We came up here and tested last week and it was 95 degrees. The track temperature was really hot. We had a really good test, so we're looking forward to racing tomorrow. We've got four races to get in The Chase, and we're focusing hard on that. If something does happen on Sunday we're prepared for whatever happens. Last week we finished 11th, and we thought we'd do better than that, but if 11th if the best you can do on a given day 11th is better than 12th. When we get in The Chase, 11th place won't be acceptable, but we've got to do what we've got to do to get in The Chase first."

"It's not that easy, but we're working hard on engines. We've got some different engines for The Chase. Once we get in The Chase we'll run a different engine package. We've got some new cars we're coming out with, but one thing we've done we've used up all our tests to get in The Chase. We tested the last four weeks. We go to Richmond next week to test and then we're out, but we're making sure we get in The Dance. There's no since to save tests if you're not in the race. We've used 'em up to get to that point."

"The team morale is up. Jeremy is doing really good. Everyone gets along good. Finishing races is what we've got to do. I heard a stat yesterday that if you'd finished seventh in every Chase race last year you would have won the championship last year. We're 11th. If all we've got to do is move up to seventh, then that's something that should be done very easily."

"Sometimes you can sneak up like a cat and jump on 'em when they least expect it. I think you'll see some good things out of us Sunday."

"We tested here and the air temperature was 95 degrees and the track temperature was 138. We figured if we could get the car good in those conditions we would be really good. Yesterday we were looser than what we thought. It really threw all the teams a curveball. We adapted to that, and I think we'll be really good."

-rc

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About this article
Series Monster Energy NASCAR Cup
Drivers Tony Stewart , Jimmie Johnson