MATT KENSETH -- No. 17 Dish Network Ford Fusion (Finished 2nd) "It was a long one. I guess for us we had a really good handling car most of the day. I thought before we pitted the last time we were capable of winning, I was just a little too...
MATT KENSETH -- No. 17 Dish Network Ford Fusion (Finished 2nd)
"It was a long one. I guess for us we had a really good handling car most of the day. I thought before we pitted the last time we were capable of winning, I was just a little too loose, which is a good thing when you're behind people. My last set of tires I got a little tighter. A couple of frustrating things was the first time pit road was closed, there was a red flag and a red light and all of those guys that pitted, including Carl going under the commitment line, I don't understand why they got their spot back. The second time, when they had it closed for the first two cars and then opened it, I can understand, but the first time it was closed as clear as could be. The red light and flag were waving the whole time, but at least they tried to straighten that mess out. Once we got that taken care of and then got racing Ryan there and kind of knocked my toe-in off and bent my fender for some reason, and after that we were just too tight to beat those guys. I'm not gonna say much more than that. We still finished second, but we thought we had a car to win and we've come close to a lot of these things. We've been able to win a few of them, but we've come pretty close and couldn't quite get it done a lot of times, too."
COULD YOU HAVE GOTTEN TO HIM?
"This place is tough. It's kind of a give-and-take race track and sometimes I struggle when to give and when to take, so like early in the race -- not real early in the race -- right before the last pit stop I saw Ryan catch me, so I moved up and got out of his way so he didn't burn up the tires and just gave him some room like I thought we always raced. Then when I got back to him 25 laps later after a pit stop, he raced the heck out of me and knocked my fender off and did all that, so sometimes that's hard to figure out. I got under Carl two or three times and was to his left-rear tire and he chopped me pretty good and I got out of the gas, so that's probably what he's talking about. I could have stayed in it and kept my spot and got him turned around, but I had to get out of it a couple of times."
WHAT'S YOUR UNDERSTANDING ABOUT THE PIT ROAD MISCUE?
"I don't really have any idea. The first time we went by it was closed. NASCAR said to open it over the scanner, which our spotters always tell us pit road should be open, but we're still supposed to pay attention and look at the flag and the light. The flag and the light was clearly red. There's no arguing that. So some of those guys pitted and whatever, but then the next time when it should have been opened for lead-lap cars, they had it closed until the 5 went by and then they opened it, so that was a mistake and that they needed to straighten out. But the first time, Carl went under the cone and four or five guys pitted. I mean, the lights were on and it was closed and I didn't understand why they got their spots back, but it probably would have been difficult to sort out who got the wrong end or who got the right end, so they probably did the right thing and just lined it back up how it was before they pitted and went from there."
WAS IT THE SAME CAUTION YOU'RE TALKING ABOUT OR A DIFFERENT ONE?
"No, it was the same caution. That caution they said they should open the pits and we went down there and it was still closed. The 5 stayed out, like he should have because it was red, and then the 60 went under the commit cone and went back on the track and then I think four or five them behind me pitted. Then the next time we went by, I can't remember what happened, I think they left it closed. And then the next time we went by it was closed until the 5 drove by the cone and then they opened it, so that was weird. Some of us pitted and then all of a sudden the light wasn't working and they opened it back up or something. So it was a little bit confusing, but, for the first time, it was for sure closed. After that it was hard to keep track because there was four or five laps of pitting or not pitting there."
DID YOU GET THE LEAD AT THAT POINT?
"No, I don't think I led. I don't think I ever had the lead."
-credit: ford racing