Jiffy Lube Miami 300 race day quotebook
HOMESTEAD, Fla. (Nov. 15, 1998) Selected quotes following Sunday's Jiffy Lube Miami 300 at the Miami-Dade Homestead Motorsports Complex:
JEFF BURTON No. 9 Track Gear Ford "Well the 60 car was very difficult to get by, but he was loose. But I tell you, he was driving his butt off. I said it a lot, he is the best driver in Winston Cup racing. This is Busch racing. He is one of the best drivers in the world. He stayed in front of me longer than anybody else could of, as loose as he was. I mean he was loose. I couldn't get by him. Finally going into three he got real loose and did a good job to save it. I got under him and got by him. I thought if I could get close enough to Jimmy I could take some air off of him and get him looser than he already was. He was real loose. That's basically what happened. I got on the apron and I was actually above him and went across him. And when I went across him it took air off his spoiler. I got on the apron and got up under him. The lapped traffic hurt him a lot. With out the lapped traffic we would have never had caught him. That was the big difference."
JIMMY SPENCER No. 12 Zippo Chevrolet Monte Carlo "I'll tell you what, that was a great race. I can't wait for Winston Cup to come down here next year. The pit road is awesome, the track is fun to race on. It's hard to pass on -- a typical flat track. We've run really well here the last three times, had three top fives. Came up a little short today. We beat Mark (Martin), and congratulate Jeff (Burton). When I go up against those big guys, I tip my hat to them. Next year I'm starting a second team and I know they're really prepared. I hope that happens for me in Winston Cup next year and I am going to make it happen in Busch."
MARK MARTIN No. 60 Winn-Dixie Ford "I was pitiful. I should have wrecked 50 times. We tried real hard to win the race but, I am glad Jeff won it. He did a great job. Spencer's car kinda faded. My car was terrible loose on that last set of tires. I don't what was wrong. They never hooked up right. I am going right now to have my surgery. I'm out of here. I'm not going to waste any more time. I've been waiting since May to get this done. The season is finally over. He (dale Earnhardt Jr.) is awesome, he is pretty incredible. I have to be careful what I say not to offend anyone, but, he just might be better than his dad."
MATT KENSETH No. 17 LYCOS.COM Chevrolet "That was really good for us, because we weren't expecting to run very good. We ran terrible all weekend. We had a problem and didn't get to practice much yesterday, so that was a very good run for us today. We came all the way up to fourth place. We were the highest-finishing Busch car, but I would've liked to have beat those Winston Cup guys. To run fourth was really good for us today. "It'd be real easy to beat myself up over losing the (Busch Series) championship since we were so close, but there's 31 races in a year and every single point matters all year long. We lost too many points. We didn't run good enough on short tracks and we didn't run good enough on flat tracks. Basically, we just lost it on performance. They (Dale Earnhardt Jr.) performed better than we did -- they had four more wins that us, but we had more top-fives and more top-10s. They led more laps and won more races, and anytime you can do that, you can win the championship. The bonus points made the difference. The difference in bonus points between us is probably what the overall difference was in the championship. Those points play a big part in winning the championship."
DAVID GREEN No. 36 Stanley Pontiac "It was a fitting end. We raced Jeff Burton all day long, and when we made that pit stop I didn't want to make any changes, but we made a little one and that hurt us. The car was that good. We just changed the air pressure -- it was a little tight on a long run, and we put a little air in the left-front tire. But this was a drop-snout car and it really didn't like that. It got too loose at the beginning, and Jeff got away from me. It got better, but by the time that happened the race was over. It's not a win, but we'll take a top five."
RANDY LaJOIE No. 74 FINA Chevrolet "We were tight all day. The car started off a little tight, but it got good on long runs. But we loosened it up a little too much, and for the last 20 laps I had my hands full. It was fun racing, though -- I had a good time. We only loosened it up a half-turn, but that was a big difference. We're in once piece, and the most important thing was getting these guys back to fourth in points."
Source: NASCAR Online