BUSCH: Phoenix: Ford teams qualifying quotes

GREG BIFFLE-60-Charter Communications Ford Taurus (Qualified 2nd) "It was OK, I guess. I'm just terrible under pressure qualifying and I don't know why. It will be a pretty good lap for us. I think it will get us in the top 10 pretty solidly,...

GREG BIFFLE-60-Charter Communications Ford Taurus (Qualified 2nd)

"It was OK, I guess. I'm just terrible under pressure qualifying and I don't know why. It will be a pretty good lap for us. I think it will get us in the top 10 pretty solidly, but I don't know if it's enough to hold on to the pole. This track felt like it had a lot of grip; we'll just have to wait and see what kind of numbers people will post. As it cools off here it will probably get faster. I've got a superstition about this race track when it sits. The first cars that go out don't do real well because you can see how windy it is and it blows sand and dust on the race track and probably the first 10 cars that go will lose a little bit of grip from that with stuff being on the track. After about 10 cars go, it kind of blows the track clean."

HOW IS THE CAR IN RACE TRIM? "I'm pretty happy in race trim and I'm pretty happy in qualifying trim. I think we're going to be right in there, in the top 10, and we'll probably run in the top 10. That's what you need to do to put yourself in a position to win a race."

MIKE MCLAUGHLIN-25-Team Marines Ford Taurus (Qualified 28th)

"That was better than we ran all day, but nowhere near the front where we need to be. This place drives like a short track and it reminds me of St. Louis and that's another track position track. You get strung out pretty quick here. Pit strategy always plays a part at these track position tracks and I'm learning that it's pretty important anywhere we go any more. You need to put yourself in the right position for that last run Saturday, and that's what we're going to work on tomorrow."

MATT KENSETH-17-Waste Management Ford Taurus (Qualified 17th)

"That was good. We didn't practice very good and it will probably get us better than 20th. Like I said, we weren't good in practice at all and we were able to pick up a little bit, so that was all right."

IT DOESN'T SEEM THAT STARTING POSITION MATTERS WHEN YOU RUN THE BUSCH RACES BECAUSE YOU'RE ALWAYS COMPETING FOR THE WIN AT THE END. "I just never qualify very good for some reason. We tried to work on race setup real hard. This is a new car and it didn't have any laps on it, so we just concentrated on race setup all of practice. That was pretty close to a shot in the dark and we picked it up halfway decent."

CAN PIT STRATEGY PLAY INTO THE OUTCOME OF THE RACE ON SATURDAY? "Here it is because it seems like the tires drop off so much. I've been in some races here before where they've had a green-flag pit stop and you had to have some tires saved for the end. It could come into play. I've seen it happen before here. We had 20 laps on our tires and some guys pitted to gamble and some guys didn't, and you'll get the caution at the wrong time or whatever, so you have to pay attention here because the tires drop off a lot."

MARK MARTIN-9-Pennzoil Ford Taurus (Qualified 9th)

"That's better than I thought we were going to qualify. That will be OK. It will be 15th or 18th, something like that, and that will be a good starting spot."

IT SEEMS TO HELP YOUR CUP EFFORT WHEN YOU RUN THE BUSCH RACE. "I'm old and I've been doing this stuff for a long time. I've been coming out here since 1988, so there's not much I'm going to learn here Saturday that's going to help us on Sunday."

JASON KELLER-22-First Horizon Home Loans Ford Taurus (Qualified 27th)

"That was a little faster than we ran in practice. It wasn't a spectacular lap, but it was a solid lap. The car is driving real good in race mode, so hopefully we can inch our way up front. This race track is really slick and you can pass on this race track. The good thing about it is that the car has been a little free and that's kind of the opposite of what I felt it was going to be; I felt it was going to be tight, so hopefully the race track will come to us a little bit."

CAN PIT STRATEGY PLAY INTO THE OUTCOME OF THE RACE ON SATURDAY? "I think there's a possibility of that, but we don't need to outthink ourselves. We just need to try to get our race car driving pretty good."

STACY COMPTON-59-Kingsford/Bush's Beans Ford Taurus (Qualified 23rd)

"That's not what we were looking for because we always run good out here. I don't know where we missed it, but I'll be glad when we get those new cylinder heads next year. The Kingsford Ford had been good all day. We were in the top 10 and top 15 all day, but we just didn't run quite as quick as we hoped to. We were hoping to run a .40 at least, and we were a couple of tenths off of that. We're sneaking up on it every week, but we're still not quite where we need to be."

ARE THE TRACK CONDITIONS ANY DIFFERENT THIS YEAR? "We're tighter. I think the track has lost total grip to me. It's hard to say. Since they moved that wall it gives it a different look. Before you always slid out there and just barely nipped the end out that wall, and now that they moved all of that, the track looks a little bit different to me, but there's still a fair amount of grip up there."

-ford racing-

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