KYLE BUSCH, No. 18 Interstate Batteries/Iamsecond.com Toyota Tundra, Kyle Busch Motorsports Starting Position: 3rd How was your qualifying lap? "Everything was good. We've had a good day here so far practicing our Interstate Batteries ...
KYLE BUSCH, No. 18 Interstate Batteries/Iamsecond.com Toyota Tundra, Kyle Busch Motorsports
Starting Position: 3rd
How was your qualifying lap? "Everything was good. We've had a good day here so far practicing our Interstate Batteries Iamsecond.com Tundra and unfortunately I'm (starting) third right now. Tomorrow I'm hoping not to be second either. I'm looking forward to it. I feel like we have a really good truck for the race. Actually kind of shocked ourselves a little bit qualifying as well as we did. Starting third will be really good for us."
Does your past success at Texas give you confidence going into the race weekend? "It does, it feels good to come out to Texas again. It being cool in the fall time, it's always fun. I have a great time out here and being able to run the Camping World Truck Series races and running well out here with those. Running the Nationwide Series and going for six (wins) in a row this weekend -- really looking forward to that. Hopefully we'll have a good day on Sunday with our M&M's Camry and keep it up front. We're going to try to come out of here with a win and get Norm Miller (chairman, Interstate Batteries) to victory lane on the Cup side."
Have your wins in Texas been different to you? "I've raced in five (Truck) races here, I haven't won them all. It's all different because I've run for Chevrolet, I've run for Toyota with Billy (Ballew Motorsports), I've run for Toyota now with my own team (Kyle Busch Motorsports). The other thing is Goodyear constantly changes the tire around here, so it's always good experience for me to come out on Thursday and get some laps on the track, feel out the tire and see what's going on there. Jason Ratcliff (Nationwide Series crew chief) came over and spent time with us today to get some knowledge on what the tire is going to do, what the cars are doing, what the tracks doing. We're ready to go for tomorrow. I'm sure Dave (Rogers, Cup Series crew chief) will be paying attention to my Nationwide practices. It's always like a series off. We'll have some good knowledge this week. We're already getting started."
How important is it as a team owner to finish the season off strong and build towards next year? "Right now with what we're doing. Our main goal is to go out here, we want to win but we know we need to finish strong and finish in front of the 30 truck (Todd Bodine) to try to win the owner's championship. That right there is going to be a huge task. As long as you are running well, you will be finishing in front of the 30 so you can get the owner's championship. All our guys back at the shop -- that's all they've been fighting for all year. They want to win races and now that they have a chance for a championship, some of them it's their first championship, others like Rick Ren (general manager), it's just another level that he's been at an organization. He hasn't won a championship as a general manager. He's teaching all these guys. He used to be the leader and make the decision, well now Eric (Phillips, crew chief) is making a lot of the decisions. It goes around. These guys are pumped about it. We want to build what we can in the last few weeks and show how strong we are and how built this program is and what we're ready for next year when we get to Daytona."
Will you gamble for a win here or will you keep the points in your mind when making decisions late in the race? "Well, it was probably Kentucky where we were leading the race and (Todd) Bodine spun out and then he came to pit road and he was going to be like two laps short on fuel. In that scenario, if he does that we've got to do the same thing because we're racing the 30 truck. That's all we're racing. So, if he comes down pit road and is going to be two laps short and is going to try to stretch it on fuel, we've got to play the same strategy. We can't take our chance of staying out there and waiting for a caution because if the caution comes out then we still have to come to pit road. Those guys are going to stay out and we're still going to have to pass the guys that didn't come to pit road. You've just got to play it by ear. You've got to be smart about it right now and I don't think you can take too many chances, but the main guy that you watch is the 30 (Todd Bodine)."
TODD BODINE, No. 30 Valvoline Toyota Tundra, Germain Racing
Starting Position: 5th
How was your truck in qualifying? "It was pretty good. We didn't know what we were going to qualify at, but it was definitely a good run. You know, old tires are the key. You have to run good and drive good on old tires and it did. Hopefully we'll have something to race them with. I think we'll be fine in the race. Like I said, old tires are the key and if you are driving good on old tires and still running fast, then obviously you're going to be up front and that's what we're going to try to do."
MIGUEL PALUDO, No. 11 Stemco Duraline Toyota Tundra, Red Horse Racing
Starting Position: 8th
How did your truck handle during practice? "It was pretty good. We worked a lot in both practices and we know that we've got a great truck for tomorrow night. I'm looking forward to the race. These guys at Red Horse Racing are doing a great job. That was my best qualifying ever -- I don't know what spot we're going to end up, but it's pretty good."
JOHANNA LONG, No. 20 Panhandle Grading and Paving Toyota Tundra, Panhandle Motorsports
Starting Position: 9th
ARIC ALMIROLA, No. 51 Billy Ballew Motorsports Toyota Tundra, Billy Ballew Motorsports
Starting Position: 12th
Are you happy with your truck? "It was fine and it drove good. This place is pretty easy to qualify at for us. We just go out there and hold it wide open. The truck drove great during practice so we'll see what we've got for the race."
JASON WHITE, No. 23 GunBroker.com/RMEF Toyota Tundra, Gun Broker Racing
Starting Position: 14th
How is your truck after Friday's practices and qualifying? "It was pretty good in race runs. Didn't qualify as well as we wanted to. It'll be alright, we'll get them in the race. It's pretty cool to run this Toyota this weekend. It's our first time on a big track so we're pretty excited about it. The first time we ran a Toyota we qualified seventh at Martinsville, finished fourth and had a real good shot for the win there. It was definitely a good, positive move and we're going to do it again here this week and then obviously in Phoenix. It's been good for our team so we're looking forward to building it for next year."
DAVID STARR, No. 81 Zachry Toyota Tundra, Green Light Racing
Starting Position: 15th
How is your truck at Texas? "Our Toyota Tundra was awesome on the race track. It is what it is, it was wide open, two laps and drove good -- it was awesome. We ran the fastest lap since we've been here, but didn't have the speed. It's frustrating because it drives good and I know it will race good, but as a competitor you want to start in the top -10 and we're not going to do that. It's not where you start, it's where you finish. We believe we have a good truck for the race tomorrow."
Are you happy to be racing in Texas in front of a hometown crowd? "It's awesome, just to be part of the NASCAR family and the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series for as long as I have. Every night I go to bed and count my blessings. To be a Toyota driver, to race in the Truck Series -- ever since I was three or four years old, this is what I dreamed about. I don't complain much, it's awesome. To be able to race here at Texas -- a lot of people that have given me opportunities to be where I'm at today, they love coming to Texas Motor Speedway. Everybody in this state drives pickup trucks and they love truck racing. It's always fun to come home and race. I'm just glad I'm racing."
TIMOTHY PETERS, No. 17 Red Horse Racing Toyota Tundra, Red Horse Racing
Starting Position: 16th
JUSTIN LOFTON, No. 7 visitPIT.com Toyota Tundra, Red Horse Racing
Starting Position: 17th
How was your qualifying lap? "It was the same as every mile-and-a-half -- wide open. The guys did a great job all of practice to get the No. 7 visitPIT.com Toyota up to speed. It handles real good and we'll see what we have tomorrow night."
TAYLER MALSAM, No. 25 Coinstar/HEB Toyota Tundra, Randy Moss Motorsports
Starting Position: 20th
How was your qualifying lap? "It was about what we expected. Most of the Toyotas here are slow. They Chevy's have got us beat here just aerodynamically and stuff. We've been wide open since we got here. The truck handles good and we'll just wait for race time to see what happens. I think me and (Mike) Skinner have got really good race trucks, but we'll find out tomorrow I guess."
JASON BOWLES, No. 46 Eddie Sharp Racing Toyota Tundra, Eddie Sharp Racing
Starting Position: 22nd
MAX PAPIS, No. 9 GEICO Toyota Tundra, Germain Racing
Starting Position: 23rd
MIKE SKINNER, No. 5 Exide/International Trucks Toyota Tundra, Randy Moss Motorsports
Starting Position: 24th
BUTCH MILLER, No. 07 Zachry/ASI Limited Toyota Tundra, Green Light Racing
Starting Position: 29th
-source: toyota motorsports