Steady rain showers in the Indianapolis area canceled Craftsman Truck Series qualifying this afternoon at Indianapolis Raceway Park and forced Bobby East to delay his NASCAR debut. East, who won Thursday night's USAC Silver Crown Series race at...
Steady rain showers in the Indianapolis area canceled Craftsman Truck Series qualifying this afternoon at Indianapolis Raceway Park and forced Bobby East to delay his NASCAR debut. East, who won Thursday night's USAC Silver Crown Series race at IRP, commented on his victory last night and having to wait to make his first NASCAR start.
BOBBY EAST-33-Roush Racing Ford F-150
YOU CAME INTO THE DAY WITH A LOT OF MOMENTUM AFTER LAST NIGHT'S SILVER CROWN WIN. "That was definitely a confidence booster for today and tonight, but there's nothing we can do about Mother Nature. My crew chief Lumpy (Jeff Campey) was so excited to go back racing. He hasn't had a chance to call a race since 2002, and I feel bad for him. I'm upset about it, but what are you going to do? Stuff like this will just make you stronger for the long run. I'm just trying to stay patient with everything and there's nothing we can do about this one today. We have a good truck, and we know it'll still be good when we unload it next time."
YOU'VE HAD THE OPPORTUNITY TO TEST WITH A FEW FORD BUSCH SERIES TEAMS THIS YEAR. ARE YOU BEGINNING TO FEEL COMFORTABLE BEHIND THE WHEEL OF A STOCK CAR? "I'm feeling comfortable in the cars, but I always say that I'm not a rocket ship yet. That will come, and I'm just so anxious to get going in these cars that something like this really puts a damper on it."
WHAT ARE YOUR FUTURE NASCAR PLANS? "I think we're going to try to run this truck at Richmond next month. I'm looking forward to going there and testing, and we'll see if we can't get fast. As for my long-term racing plans, I'd love to run either series next year. Running a year in the trucks for my first year would probably be good, but if I end up running a Busch car, that's all right. It will be a little tougher, but that's good."
TODD KLUEVER-50-Shell Rotella T Ford F-150 (Finished 2nd)
"It was a really good day for my Shell Rotella crew team. I'm just really excited for my guys. About four weeks ago, Jack flip-flopped crews around a little bit and gave me a new crew chief with Mike Beam, and a new engineer with Hal Ralston, and a new truck chief with Steve McCain. For whatever reason, not that there was anything wrong with the last guys I had, but we've really clicked. They can give exactly what I need and it's been a phenomenal last four weeks and a lot of fun. I thought tonight was going to be our night. I've been waiting for a long time this year to win one of these things and I'm pretty disappointed it didn't happen. I thought it was ours until that last caution, and I just got too tight at the end."
DO YOU THINK YOU COULD HAVE WON IF THE RACE STAYED GREEN AT THE END? "Absolutely. I really think we would have. Our 50 truck was awesome on the bottom all night. It ran better on the bottom than it did on the top. It was just a really good night for us, and I'm happy to run well with Shell Rotella T on the truck. The last four weeks have been exciting. I thought tonight was our night for the win."
DID YOU THINK YOU HAD A SHOT AT SETZER ON THE FINAL RESTART? "I struggled with my restarts tonight for some reason. They were really good last week and I don't know what my deal was. Normally, if we had a bad restart we could run him down, but Dennis got out there and I got too tight after that last run and couldn't catch him."
RICK CRAWFORD-14-Circle Bar Truck Corral Ford F-150 (Finished 6th)
"Starting 17th, where we started, the Circle Bar guys worked hard and it was a fun truck to drive tonight. Mr. Mitchell told me Monday in our meeting that this week in IRP - he's fond of this place because he raced over at The Brickyard with his Indy car - and he told me that this weekend in Indy needs to be a confidence builder for the team. We brought one of our finest trucks here and worked hard on it that hour of practice we had for racing only. For it to be able to race different places on the race track to pass, it did its job all night long. We were hoping for a caution and stayed out there during the middle of the race and came in and pitted and made that lap back and got the Lucky Dog. I think if we could have gotten another caution and a green-white-checkered that we could have had a top-five finish. But, that's the way racing plays out and we were a sixth-place truck tonight."
TERRY COOK-10-Ford Power Stroke Diesel by Int'l F-150 (Finished 12th)
"The Ford Power Stroke Diesel by Int'l truck was a little off tonight. We weren't bad and we ran in the top 10 almost the entire race. We decided to come in there at the end and take on tires and thought we might move up a couple of spots, but we were slipping and sliding the last 10 laps even on sticker tires. We kind of used of the body up there at the end. We need to get a better handle on our short-track program. We're not way off, but we're not where we need to be, so we'll go to work."
WERE YOU SURPRISED BY THE LONG GREEN-FLAG STRETCH? "No, not really because that's typical IRP. You'll have long green-flag runs here, so that didn't surprise me. Any time you go to a race track that has a lot of racing room, if you get into trouble a lot of guys have a lot of room to recover. IRP is that type of track, and that's why you get those long green-flag runs. It's kind of like Kentucky where it's extremely wide, so if you get into trouble you have room for correction."