TODD KLUEVER -50-World Financial Group Ford F-150
Raybestos Rookie-of-The-Year Press Conference
"Our season has really been up and down. The first 12 or so races, I had a different crew chief, a different engineer and a different truck chief, and for whatever reason we really didn't click. We ran in the top five a couple of times and we ran 25th a couple of times, too, so it was really inconsistent and really frustrating for me. Just before Kansas, Jack made a change, and me and Ricky swapped crews a little bit.
"I got Mike Beam as a crew chief, and Hal Rolston as an engineer and Steve McCain as a truck chief, and for whatever reason we've really clicked. The last half of the season has been really good. We're lacking a little bit as far as aerodynamics, I think, with the Ford program a little bit right now, but they're working on it. The trucks that I drove at the end of the season were a lot better than the stuff we were driving at the beginning of the season, and that's thanks to Mike Beam and Hal, especially for doing a lot of homework during the season.
"The second half was great, I just wish we could have started the season off the same way. I really feel like we gave the first half of the season away. I really didn't feel we started competing and racing until Kansas. Part of the thing the first year is learning, and you can't learn anything if you're running 15th or 20th. You have to be in the top five running with the guys that run up there very week. It's been a great second half, and an up-and-down first half, but the only disappointment that I have is that we didn't win a race."
"I guess I have to thank Jack Roush for the opportunities that I've had already. It's pretty amazing what he has done as far as developing people's careers in the Craftsman Truck Series. Having four people come through his organization that turn out to be Raybestos Rookie-of-the-Year is pretty impressive, but I plan on running again for Raybestos Rookie-of-the-Year in the Busch Series next year, and in 2007 I'll be back at it again, running for Raybestos Rookie-of-the Year in the Nextel Cup Series in the AAA Ford Fusion.
"I'm excited about the future. All of the Busch plans are not finalized exactly at this moment, but I'm excited about it. They tell that if I can manage to pull off rookie-of-the-year three years in the row that I'll be the first person to do it. Greg Biffle was the only other one, but I think Jaime beat him out in the Nextel Cup Series."