Toyota teams Kansas II qualifying quotes

Toyota Motorsports press release

Kyle Busch, Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota
Kyle Busch, Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota

Photo by: Ashley Dickerson, ASP Inc.

KYLE BUSCH, No. 18 M&M’s Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing Starting Position: 3rd

How was your qualifying lap? “We were looking for a little bit more than that, but certainly the pace is a little bit slower than we expected qualifying to be. So far so good. We’ve dodged a couple bullets. The M&M’s Camry unloaded good. We were a tick too loose in race trim, but we seem to be making some good gains on it and once we get here tomorrow we’ll make some more on it and of course make it better for the race. The qualifying run was decent. Just keep working on the fine-tune balance of it and what we can get out of it trying to make sure that we have a winning car for Sunday.”

Did you do any race runs today during practice? “Yeah, we did a couple race runs early and then swapped over. Really struggled in race trim actually, so we’re really looking forward to tomorrow and trying to get it better.”

How much of a factor was the wind during your qualifying lap? “I could really feel it earlier, but not so much now. Certainly that could have been a little bit of an issue, but with it blowing down the backstretch into turn three it kind of blows us up the race track a little bit. It doesn’t allow us to get to the bottom the way we like, but it’s the same for everybody.”

Is it beneficial coming to Kansas Speedway twice even though it’s a different time of year? “When it’s one of your least favorite race tracks -- it’s not beneficial to come here twice. We’ll work hard and take what we can get out of this weekend. We know it’s going to be a hard one for us and one we’re really going to have to dig in and pull something out of.”

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KASEY KAHNE, No. 4 Red Bull Toyota Camry, Red Bull Racing Team Starting Position: 5th

How was your qualifying lap? “I think we were off there a little bit with our Red Bull Toyota and still were top-five, so I actually feel like the car has speed in it. We’ve had pretty good speed for the last few weeks and it’s a good sign for Sunday. We need to work on it some more tomorrow. There’s some rough spots here and then it will be slippery too when the sun comes out. It will be an interesting race. I’m looking forward to it. This is a great track.”

Does your finish at Dover last week give you momentum for these final races this season? “I think Dover was great. New Hampshire was really good, we just didn’t have the mileage to make it there. Dover, we put together a great race and just got beat right at the end. It was still exciting. I felt like we were the best car at times and that feels good. The Red Bull guys are doing a really nice job. Still working really hard to try to win a race before the season is out. Hopefully Sunday -- that will be the day.”

Is there any benefit coming to Kansas a second time? “It’s definitely different with the weather. We all knew coming here it was going to be kind of slippery, and it seems to be that again today. No surprise. You learn stuff since it’s been so long since we’ve been here. So, we actually are running our car a little bit different now than what we were then. Kind of like it better. It’s kind of progression. I like the car better because it’s been driving great the last four weeks because we changed some things.

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DENNY HAMLIN, No. 11 FedEx Freight Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing Starting Position: 7th

How was your qualifying lap? “We were a little tight. We did pick up pretty good speed from where we were in practice. Definitely happy with that. That’s all I can ask for is to pick up speed and continue to trend in the right direction.”

Were you surprised with your qualifying lap? “We got our car a little better than where we were in practice and like I said in the press conference, we’re going to be trending up here in the next few weeks. I’m sure of that. We’re working on some stuff that is going to be better for us in the future. I feel like we’re heading in the right direction. It’s just going to take a little time to get where we need to be.”

Did the wind impact your qualifying lap? “A little bit. It really affects the car getting into (turn) three more than anywhere. That’s kind of hard to adjust to. In the race, hopefully we won’t have this because it’s very unpredictable at this point. When you get other cars around you and everything it can be worse. The problem with the gusts is that you plan for it -- we drive these cars to the limit and when we know that there’s a headwind we’ll drive into a corner extra hard. When we know there’s a tailwind we know we have to back it up. So, when that gust comes and sometimes it’s not there you find yourself in big trouble.”

How do you feel about your race team at this point in the season? “We’re starting to head back in the right direction. I feel like we are in these next few weeks going to be heading in the right direction. Obviously, it takes some work. Not overnight are we going to be out here leading every lap and winning races like last year. It’s a process and I feel like we’re starting that process now.”

Why is your race team moving in the right direction? “Well, I think we’re learning some stuff about our cars. I think that I’m figuring -- guys are driving a lot different this year than what they were last year. When you have to step up and be a little more aggressive you need different things out of your race car. We’re trying to work through that at this point. It’s a big combination of different things. It goes from where I need help getting the car right to I need to be more aggressive at times. It’s a lot of different things that are a factor.”

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MARTIN TRUEX JR., No. 56 NAPA AUTO PARTS Toyota Camry, Michael Waltrip Racing Starting Position: 8th

Were you happy with the handling on your race car during your qualifying lap? “Not really, no. It wasn’t what we expected. It was a little bit different than I expected. We’ve had good speed in our NAPA Toyota all day. We’ve been kind of on both sides of the balance and there we were on the wrong side of it again. A little bit disappointed there because I thought we had a shot at the pole and just missed it. It doesn’t take much at these big tracks.”

Did the wind affect your qualifying lap? “It’s definitely more challenging. It makes (turns) three and four a lot harder to get through which typically here at Kansas (turns) three and four is the tougher corner to begin with and then of course you’ve got the wind blowing the car up the track even more. It’s definitely challenging, but it’s the same for everybody.”

Is it beneficial coming to Kansas Speedway twice in one season even though the weather conditions are different? “No. The setups on these cars and all of the things that these teams come up with throughout the season change so much. I know most guys will be 180 degrees different than what they ran here before. Setup-wise the cars are getting better and it was like 120 degrees here when we raced in the summer so it will be a lot different this weekend.”

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BRIAN VICKERS, No. 83 Red Bull Toyota Camry, Red Bull Racing Team Starting Position: 15th

What has it been like running double duty this weekend at Kansas? “I’m excited. I’m just grateful for the opportunity that Dollar General and Turner Motorsports gave me. It’s been a long time since I’ve run Nationwide. I also want to thank Red Bull for letting me run Nationwide at the end of this year. As far as my Cup car is concerned, we pretty much wholesaled it. So, that was basically the first lap with a brand new car on the race track. I think it was a decent lap. Considering it was a new car, the guys did a great job getting everything changed and it was decent.

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JOEY LOGANO, No. 20 Home Depot Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing Starting Position: 20th

DAVID REUTIMANN, No. 00 Aaron’s Dream Machine Toyota Camry, Michael Waltrip Racing Starting Position: 27th

BOBBY LABONTE, No. 47 Bush’s Beans/Kingsford Toyota Camry, JTG-Daugherty Racing Starting Position: 33rd

CASEY MEARS, No. 13 GEICO Toyota Camry, Germain Racing Starting Position: 37th

MICHAEL MCDOWELL, No. 66 HP Racing, LLC Toyota Camry, HP Racing Starting Position: 40th

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JOE NEMECHEK, No. 87 NEMCO Motorsports Camry, NEMCO Motorsports Starting Position: 43rd

How much of a factor has the wind been in turns three and four? “I tell you what, you wouldn’t think the wind would affect our cars that bad but it takes them and just shoves them up the track. Getting in turn three it settles you in the corner a lot harder than you want to go and it makes you loose. So, next thing you do is you get back on the throttle and you’re coming up trying to get back up off the corner and all of a sudden your car will change two lanes straight at the wall and you’ve just got to be ready for it.”

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MIKE SKINNER, No. 60 Big Red Toyota Camry, Germain Racing Starting Position: DNQ

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Series NASCAR-CUP
Tags busch, hamlin, kahne, toyota