JUAN PABLO MONTOYA, NO. 42 TARGET CHEVROLET, met with members of the media at Richmond International Raceway and discussed team's philosophy for remainder of the season, thoughts on this season versus last year, racing at Richmond and other ...
JUAN PABLO MONTOYA, NO. 42 TARGET CHEVROLET, met with members of the media at Richmond International Raceway and discussed team's philosophy for remainder of the season, thoughts on this season versus last year, racing at Richmond and other topics.
TALK ABOUT THIS WEEKEND AND IS THERE ANYTHING YOU HAVE THOUGHT ABOUT HELPING TEAMMATES? "I think it is too late to help anybody. I think the Chase is set. Unless somebody blows a motor or gets wrecked on lap one, it is more than set. You look at where the guys, you have what, five or six that are going to park your guys. Bowyer needs to be ahead of like five guys on the race track to get in. I think it is all said and done already. I think for us, right now, it is more about getting our job done and just keep enjoying ourselves. Right now we are doing that and it is paying off."
DO YOU AND THE TARGET TEAM HAVE UNFINISHED BUSINESS FOR 2010 OR ARE YOU FOCUSED ON NEXT YEAR? "In a way, we can be a lot more aggressive on the car and the calls we make. We have been doing that lately and it has been working. We aren't afraid of making changes on the car because of thinking about points. Right now, we are here to race and we are here to try to win it and it has been working really well."
WHAT ABOUT PRACTICE THIS WEEKEND-ALL OF THE PRACTICES ARE IN THE DAYTIME, BUT WE RACE AT NIGHT? "Last week was the same. It is one of those deals that sucks, but it is what it is, you know. It is interesting, you have to look at the history what is the tendency of the car, what we are doing today for the night. When you can figure that out, you are going to run well. Last week, we did and we had a fast car."
TALK ABOUT THE TEAM NOW COMPARED TO A YEAR AGO: "To tell you the truth, I'm actually...you look at last year and yes, we made the Chase and everything, but we were nowhere near as competitive as where we are at right now. We have like four or five top-10s in a row. We've been there every week. We had a win. We're there. Last year, we played the point game. At the end of the day to make the Chase, you have to score the points. We didn't score the points this year, but we had the results."
IS THIS YEAR MORE SATISFYING? "In a way it is frustrating because we didn't make the Chase, but we've done that already. But it is satisfying because we are performing and having the Target car up there every week means a lot."
ARE YOU A BETTER TEAM THAN LAST YEAR? "I think we are doing a better job this year. Last year in the Chase, we did a really good job but I think overall as a team, our cars got a lot better this year. I think having Jamie (McMurray) running well as well has really helped the team and I think as a complete team we are definitely better."
WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO TARGET TO NOT BE IN THE CHASE? "Well, last year we made the Chase and didn't win a single race. This year we didn't make the Chase but we won a race. I'm sure it balances it out. Of course you want to make the Chase, you definitely want to have a realistic chance at winning the championship. This year, I think our pit crew still needs a little bit of work. I think sometimes the calls we make still need a little bit of work, but, it is all experience. Brian (Pattie, crew chief) needs experience. I need experience and the pit crew also. Having these 10 races with no pressure whatsoever, I think is pretty good for the whole team."
WHAT DO YOU THINK OF BRUTON SMITH WANTING THE LAST RACE TO LEAVE HOMESTEAD AND GO TO LAS VEGAS? "It's business. I don't think it has anything to do with anything. I think it is just business and he wants the race to be at a track of his own and not somebody else's. That is what it is, simple business."
DO YOU LIKE HAVING A RACE IN THE FLORIDA AREA WHERE YOU LIVE? "I think it is cool race. It is a good race track always with a really good crowd. I will go wherever they tell me."
WHAT ARE YOU LOOKING FOR IN NEW HAMPSHIRE NEXT WEEK? "We run really well there. Hopefully another pole and see if we can finally close the deal. This is one of those race tracks that has been like Indy to me. We have been there all the time and have never been able to close to deal so it would be nice if we can close the deal there."
WOULD A WIN IN THE LAST 10 RACES REALLY CAP OFF A GOOD SEASON FOR YOU? "Definitely. Right now I would say it has been a better season, we have just been having a lot of bad luck. Been involved a lot in other people's wrecks. You can't control that. They wreck in front of you, they come across and hit you and you are out of the race. When you do that, you lose all those points but it is just tough racing."
WHAT ABOUT NEW HAMPSHIRE TO YOU LIKE? WHAT IS IT ABOUT THAT PLACE THAT APPEALS TO YOU? "That I run good there. It is just one of those places where you either run good or you run bad. When you run good, things go well and you look good. When you run bad, you run bad and that's it. It is like Pocono. Why do we suck at Pocono? I would love to know (LAUGHS)."
-source: gm racing