Daytona: 2nd, 3rd finisher, top rookie press conference

DRIVE4COPD 300 Post-Race News Conference February 13, 2010 An interview with CARL EDWARDS - 2nd JAMES BUESCHER - Top rookie KEVIN HARVICK - 3rd KERRY THARP: We'll roll into the post race. Certainly pleased to be joined in the media center by...

DRIVE4COPD 300 Post-Race News Conference
February 13, 2010

An interview with
CARL EDWARDS - 2nd
JAMES BUESCHER - Top rookie
KEVIN HARVICK - 3rd

KERRY THARP: We'll roll into the post race. Certainly pleased to be joined in the media center by James Buescher, our top Raybestos Rookie-of-the-Year finishing eighth today in the field.

Certainly for the first time running in the Nationwide Series here at Daytona, you got to be pleased with that performance.

JAMES BUESCHER: I'm definitely pleased with our performance. The 1 car was pretty good. At the start of the race, we started 11th on points. I mean, everything was going smooth. Green flag stops, I went in, pit stop went pretty smooth for right-side tires. Came out of the pits. Next time we pitted, I don't know what it was, eight or 10 laps later under caution for four tires, going into the pits, I didn't have first or second gear. Leaving the pits, I burned the clutch up. So I was left with just third and fourth gear. The next pit stop, I burned third gear up trying to get out of the pit. Luckily we didn't have to pit anymore. The last third of the race, we only had fourth gear.

So definitely really pleased with everybody at Phoenix Racing. It's a good start to the year to come home eighth and actually finish the race with the problem that we had, with the drivetrain and everything. Avoided a lot of big wrecks. I'm pretty pleased.

KERRY THARP: Finishing second in today's race, Carl Edwards, drivers of the No. 60 Fastenal Ford.

Carl, certainly excitement towards the end. Your thoughts about how things unfolded the last few laps.

CARL EDWARDS: Pretty fun race there at the end. Tony's car was just unbelievable all day. I think the broadcast crew called it in practice. That thing was a rocket. I was really proud of my guys, really happy with our luck that we were able to finish second to him. I'm not certain, but I think it was the same last year as well. Going to have to work on that.

A great start to the season for the points. We're here to win a championship. My guys did a really good job with the car. It was a lot of fun.

KERRY THARP: We'll take questions for either Carl or James.

Q: Carl, when you're in a wreck like that at the end of the race, how hard is it to regroup and move back up through the field like you did? James, how far can you go this season with sponsorship?

CARL EDWARDS: For that wreck, I still haven't seen a replay, but I was doing my best to squeeze back in behind the 22 car. I didn't even know it was the 22 car at the time. I just have to see the replay.

I felt like at the last minute he might have moved over just a little bit to the left. That took any amount of extra room I had away. I have to see the replay. I definitely could have given him a little more room and we probably wouldn't have had that problem.

Man, it's hard racing. When something like that happens, when I saw Dale's car go upside down, it does make your heart stop a little bit. I was really glad to hear he was okay.

JAMES BUESCHER: On the sponsorship situation, Miccosukee is gone. So the Nationwide Series is still full speed ahead. James Finch has committed that for me. We're still searching for sponsorship, but we'll be at every race, trying to win this Rookie-of-the-Year, finish in the top five, top 10 in points.

Q: Carl, could you not put anything together with Justin at the end to make a run on Tony, maybe get a second?

CARL EDWARDS: Yeah, I was watching Justin. Man, that guy can drive. He was loose big-time. I'd look up the line of car the last 15, 20 laps, it was easy to see him because he was sideways. He just did a great job.

But I knew going into turn three, he was going to be really loose. We had a ton of steam built up. I kind of just preyed on him a little bit, moved him outside, went around him, just hoping that maybe I would maintain some momentum and be able to get to Tony and do something with him.

But I was really trying to get that last spot. If I'd have slowed down and stayed behind him, we would have been going so slow, someone would have capitalized off of turn four and we both would have been behind someone else. That was my thinking.

Q: Any update, Carl?

CARL EDWARDS: Haven't talked to my wife yet, no. No news is good news, I guess. I should be hoping for a childbirth, but...

Monday would be great. She's got her legs crossed and I've got my fingers crossed (smiling).

Please don't print that.

KERRY THARP: Thank you, Carl. Thank you, James.

CARL EDWARDS: All right.

JAMES BUESCHER: Thank you.

KERRY THARP: We have our third-place finisher in the race, Kevin Harvick. He also had the winning car out there today. Tony Stewart's No. 4 car, driving for Kevin today.

Congratulations on both ends. You certainly had a strong car. ertainly Cthat 4 car was very strong. Your thoughts on both accounts?

KEVIN HARVICK: Tony and I talked before the race. I told him if everything went right, I didn't think they could beat both of our cars as good as they were in practice. In the race it worked out to be the same way. Best car I've ever had here.

I think we worked a long time, a lot of hours put into our Speedway program. It all paid off today.

Things just went great all weekend. Obviously the car was a little bit -- my car was a little more tore up than what I thought it was, but it still ran really good. Just wasn't enough car to get that outside line really going there at the end. I thought the only car that could pass Tony would be ours. So it worked out pretty good.

KERRY THARP: Questions for Kevin Harvick.

Q: Kevin, your expanded role as an owner, does that create more stress on you or are you happy to have another car?

KEVIN HARVICK: Well, I think anytime you can put together the effort that we put together and have Tony drive it, that's the car I ran in all the Speedway races last year, so we knew it was a great car. Then you put him in it, your odds are pretty good.

Speedway racing, it really helps to have a teammate. I think that's one reason that we were excited, first time we had a teammate since, gosh, I don't even know when, probably last time we won here. It's just fun when you can have a couple cars.

Really no more stress. I just tell them what I expect, they do a great job at the shop. I don't have to do anything. I just put out orders, I guess (smiling).

Q: Obviously all you guys, especially at the front, are competitive individuals. How satisfying is it for you to win as a car owner versus winning as a driver? When you walk away, another one of your cars has won, is it kind of a mixed feeling?

KEVIN HARVICK: I think the competitor in you wants to win. Shoot, I'm just lucky that my car was still rolling. I hadn't spun out and not hit anything in about a year, so it was nice to have that happen.

You know, I felt like we had a chance to win the race. That's really all you could ask for as a competitor. Obviously, when you have that chance, you want to -- when you're behind the wheel, you want to make it happen, but it wasn't going to be at the detriment of the 4, both of us losing the race.

It's a little bit tough to make sure that you put both cars in the right position. I know Tony would do the same thing if he was behind me and if I was behind him. We're not going to push somebody else to win the race.

There's a little bit of responsibility that comes with that from the ownership side of it. But in the end, as a driver, you want to win. But when you have something to fall back on, your other car is in Victory Lane, that's all we can ask for at a Speedway race because you can't control the circumstances, such as things happened to the 33 today.

Q: You had a really good Speedweeks so far. How do you feel about tomorrow? Do you feel you have teammates that can help you up there tomorrow?

KEVIN HARVICK: I think for us, it's just about having your car handle good. Obviously having teammates doesn't hurt anything. I feel good about our track position. I felt good about our cars all week. We've had a chance to win every race we've been in so far.

Tomorrow isn't going to be any different. I'm looking forward to it. You go and race as hard as you can. You can't control the circumstances, but you can race hard all day. That's what we're going to do.

Q: When it comes to putting Tony in your car, do you count that as money in the bank, it's a pretty good bet on your part, good business, that type of thing, or... ?

KEVIN HARVICK: Well, you know, for me it's just fun. Saturday's all about having fun. It's a challenge to push the guys in the shop to build good enough equipment to give him a chance to win. You know, they've built really good stuff. Since he's been in our cars, it's night-and-day difference as far as the competitiveness of the cars. They were okay when he drove 'em before. He pretty much manhandled them to win a couple times down here. This particular time I think, you know, he manhandled it anyway. And the cars are quite a bit faster.

I enjoy having him in the car. I think it's fun for him. It's fun for me when the cars run fast enough that he has fun. You know, we're good friends, and that's what it's all about.

KERRY THARP: Kevin, thanks for putting on a good show and a lot of luck tomorrow.

KEVIN HARVICK: Thanks, guys.

-source: nascar

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About this article
Series NASCAR XFINITY
Drivers Tony Stewart , Kevin Harvick , Carl Edwards , James Buescher
Teams Phoenix Racing