JAMIE McMURRAY (No. 42 Texaco/Havoline Dodge Charger) -- Finished 2nd "This is very exciting. Like other teams that have been struggling at the beginning of the year, we've been working hard on chassis and bodies and engines. Our engine package...
JAMIE McMURRAY (No. 42 Texaco/Havoline Dodge Charger) -- Finished 2nd
"This is very exciting. Like other teams that have been struggling at the beginning of the year, we've been working hard on chassis and bodies and engines. Our engine package is real good right now. It runs for 500 miles and it's extremely fast. I'm proud of everybody at the engine shop. Our crew chiefs all work together well, and they made some good decisions today. It's very exciting to be part of Chip's and Felix's team right now.
"I don't think anybody had anything for the 16. They've been that way two or three times this year and Jimmie was that way last year. When you're on it's hard to beat you. You see it a lot when guys go to backup cars and put backup engines in. Then they always have their best days. I'm not sure why.
"I didn't think anybody was going to catch Greg. It looked like Casey could stay with him after five or 10 laps, but I think Greg got out to a comfortable lead and then just rode. His car was incredible all day long. We got in an incident on lap two or three and knocked all the valance off. We had to go all the way to the back after the second or third caution, and our car was really, really good. It got harder to pass the closer to the front we'd get, but the pit crew did an amazing job. We passed some people on two or three stops. Track position is important every week, and it was really important today. I'm just glad to get back in the media center. The past couple of weeks with flat tires has been very frustrating, so to have a complete day today without any errors and all the air in our tires was a big deal.
"I didn't even see Chip after the race. I'll say this, when things don't go well, Chip is extra friendly. He says, 'Don't get down. It's okay. I've been racing a long time, and you just go through spells like this.' This is not a quote of mine, this is a quote of Donnie Wingo's because I don't want any trouble, but Donnie said that car owners when you run well get grumpy. I don't know why, but he said they do. In the last couple of weeks we've blown tires out, and Chip and Donnie have been on the phone talking, and Chip has been nicer than every. So, maybe I just won't call him this week, because he might be grumpy.
"After our last two weeks, this is great. These are the racetracks that we feel like we struggle at. Even though the only Cup win I have is at Charlotte, at a racetrack similar to
this, these are what we feel are our weakest points. And Bristol and Martinsville are our strongest, and I had bad luck there. It's very easy in this sport when things don't go well -- even if it's something like a tire going out -- that you have nothing to do but get down on yourself and be very stressed out whether it's from a sponsor standpoint or just doubting yourself. So, it feels really good to get back and run well, especially in a 500-mile race to start as far back as we did and get back to the front. I'm going to Phoenix early to play golf, so it's going to really make for a cool week.
"All year long we've talked about the Hendrick teams and the Roush teams. But, it's incredible to see all three of our teams finish in the top-five. It's something that we've never done as a team. At Sonoma last year, I think Scott and I both finished in the top five and Kasey was like seventh. But it's a learning process. I think everyone knew when we put the shorter spoilers on went to a different tire, that some of the teams were going to catch on quicker. The car that I ran here today had a completely different body on it. It's the same chassis that I raced at Atlanta, Las Vegas and California.
"Donnie (crew chief Wingo) went back and cut the entire body off of it and just shaped it all different and tried to get the balance shifted and it was tremendously better. The other deal is our engine program is really turned around. I was very critical of it last year, that the engines broke a lot. Honestly, I didn't think they ran very well. After the chassis dyno at Atlanta, we made the most power of any team. And it really shows on the racetrack. You don't have to drive the car as hard when you have more power. So, from our body shop to the guys that hang the bodies to the engine shop, the whole organization has just gotten stronger.
"I think that we're one of the few teams that all three of our teams, everything is open. Before every race and after every race we all get setup sheets from all the teams and it goes all the way to the way we hang the bodies to everything, the shocks. It's not surprising when you see one of our teams run well to see the other ones. Chip is very big on everything being exactly the same. I'll tell you, if you came up to any of our cars everything, except for the seats, is exactly the same. So, that makes it nice."