Ford teams Atlanta race quotes

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Ford Racing press release

David Ragan, Roush Fenway Racing Ford
David Ragan, Roush Fenway Racing Ford

Photo by: Ashley Dickerson, ASP Inc.

DAVID RAGAN – No. 6 UPS Ford Fusion

“Right before I lifted to go into turn three, it started vibrating tremendously. At first I thought it was the transmission or something like that because it just vibrated so bad and still had decent power, but I shut it off and I saw smoke. Obviously, I got back in here and half of the block is gone where a rod or something threw it, so it’s very unfortunate. We had a top-five to top-10 car today, but sometimes things happen.”

WHAT ABOUT YOUR CHASE CHANCES NOW? “We’d have to look at the points and see how it’s gonna shake out. I bet there’s still a mathematical chance that we could win Richmond and get into the Top 20 and make the Chase, and that’s certainly the mindset we’re gonna have. We’re not gonna give up no matter what. We can still have a great season. There are five or six tracks coming up where we’ll be a threat to win at, but this is gonna make it a lot harder. The month of August was really tough for us. We had some speed in our car. We had a car that could have won the race in the right position, but you can’t do that win no engine.”

WHAT WAS THE STOPPING AND STARTING LIKE? “It was frustrating. I feel bad for the fans coming out again. They were probably playing hooky off of work to come out and watch a race and it was gonna be a great race. I’m proud of our UPS team. Our car was good. Our engines have been great all year, so nothing against those guys. We’re just doing all we can to try and win races.”

WHAT CAN YOU SAY ABOUT THE RACING ON THIS TRACK? “This race track is so much fun. This is the most fun that I’ve had in a couple of months. The race track races so well. Goodyear brought a great tire. I don’t know what the difference is in years past, but the tire doesn’t fall off a lot. You can run extremely hard, so everything was just right for a good ending, we’re just not gonna be a part of it.”

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DAVID GILLILAND – No. 34 A&W All-American Food Ford Fusion

“We were racing for the lucky dog with the 38 and I was just trying to get all I could getting onto pit road. I stayed on the race track and when I dropped down onto the apron it started to wheel-hop a little bit and it ended up breaking the driveshaft. I’ve never done that, but I guess there’s a first time for everything. It’s unfortunate. We had A&A All-American Food on our car this weekend. I felt like we had a good car. We didn’t start out well. We had a plug wire fall off at the beginning and some other stuff happened, but I felt like we were going in the right direction and getting our car to drive the way we wanted, but it’s not the kind of day we were looking.”

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CARL EDWARDS – No. 99 Aflac Ford Fusion

“First of all, I’ve got to thank all of the fans for coming out here on a Tuesday. I’m glad we got the race in in its entirety. At one point I was really hoping it would rain, but I’m glad we got to finish the race. There was a lot of hard driving out there. I don’t know what it looked like from outside the car, but from inside the car it was a lot of work. It’s one of the most fun race tracks we go to, I wish we were coming back here next week.”

DO YOU FEEL GOOD ABOUT YOUR CAR ON MILE-AND-A-HALF TRACKS WITH THE CHASE COMING UP? “I feel pretty good about it. We still need to get a little bit better, but we had great strategy. We did a good job on pit road. The balance went away a little bit, but we appreciate Aflac being on board with the Aflac Cancer Center. It’s Aflac.com/friends if you want to help these kids out. These are great kids. We wish we would have gotten a win for them, but it was a good run.”

WAS IT JUST A CASE OF TRACK POSITION THAT PUT YOU BEHIND AT THE END? “We got a little loose at the end. I don’t know if the track loosened up or our set of tires was looser or something, but we were just a little too loose. The sun was coming out and the track was changing, but the car overall was really good all day. There were times when I felt like we had the car to beat, but timing-wise if the conditions would have been different at the end, I think we would have had a really good shot at the end.”

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MATT KENSETH – No. 17 Crown Royal Ford Fusion

“After the rain we didn’t do anything to the car. We just put a set of tires on it and it was junk. We adjusted on it a little bit and put another set on, but we got really loose at the end and couldn’t keep up. I don’t really know what happened. We had a lot of speed and it was pretty fast the first half of the race, but I don’t know what happened after that one rain delay. We just struggled after that.”

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GREG BIFFLE – No. 16 3M Ford Fusion

“It wasn’t bad, but I wasn’t where I wanted to be. I’ve struggled here the last couple races with getting the car to be balanced from the beginning of the run to the end of the run. It’s like I’ll be too tight at the beginning of the run and then I’ll free it up and I’ll just smoke them on the restart, but then on lap 15 it’s like I can’t find a place I can drive it. We’ve got to work on that some more and look at our teammates’ notes and see what we can do. But we finished 12th and that’s not bad. It’s not the end of the world.”

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AJ ALLMENDINGER – No. 43 Best Buy Ford Fusion

“I felt like we were a solid top five or top six car early in the going and we just got pounded on that restart. I’m not sure what happened. Clint just ran into the back of us. I don’t know if I was spinning the tires and he was ready to go or not, but I got hooked and we got door-slammed by somebody and then from there it was just kind of a fight to get back on it. The whole left side was crushed in, so the guys did a good job of getting the fenders pushed back out. The crush panel in the rear was destroyed. The car wasn’t the same, but to fight back with 100 to go being 28th and to get back to 10th, I was impressed with the whole day.”

THERE IS STILL A SLIM CHANCE A WIN COULD GET YOU A WILD CARD. WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS GOING TO RICHMOND? “We know the chances are still there. It’s still wide-open when it comes to having a chance to go win and anything can happen after that, but, for me, like I said from the beginning, the Chase, for me, doesn’t define the season. I’d love to get in the Chase, that’s the ultimate goal, but as a race team we keep getting better. If we can go into these last 11 races that we have and get to Homestead and be far better than where we started, that, to me, is a great season. We’re getting there. We still have a little ways to go, but every week I feel like we improve.”

YOU’VE HAD FOUR SOLID RACES FINISHING BETWEEN 8TH-12TH. HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT WHERE YOU’RE AT RIGHT NOW AS A TEAM? “That’s right where we are as a race team right now. I felt like we legitimately had a top-five car and then when we got the damage that’s what makes a good race team because we fought back. At Michigan we didn’t have a good car, we got an 11th out of it, so it’s things like that where we can go and keep finishing well. That’s where we are as a team right now. We’re about an eighth to a 12th or 13th-place race team, but that’s better than where we had been, so that’s the improvement I’m looking for. If we can just keep getting there, whether we make the Chase or not, if we can go into those last 10 races and be a legitimate car every weekend that’s running inside the top-10 or top-five – maybe go to a couple tracks like Loudon or Dover and have a chance to win – then I’ll be really happy with the season.”

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Series NASCAR-CUP
Tags atlanta, edwards, ford, sprint cup