Fontana II: Winning team interview

KYLE BUSCH, No. 18 NOS Energy Drink Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing !Finished: 1st Did your pit crew win you this race? "They did, that's why he is who Jason (Ratcliff, crew chief) is. He does a great job and makes great calls. These guys...

KYLE BUSCH, No. 18 NOS Energy Drink Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing !Finished: 1st

Did your pit crew win you this race?

"They did, that's why he is who Jason (Ratcliff, crew chief) is. He does a great job and makes great calls. These guys did an awesome job for me today. Pit road probably won this race, so I can' t thank these guys enough. They do a great job. I have to thank NOS Energy Drink, Z-Line Designs, Combos and all the guys at Toyota -- this is their home track so it's cool to be here and win it in front of them - Nationwide, it's a great series to run with, of course. All the people that make this so much fun for us to come out here and get number 12 -- it's awesome. These guys really enjoy doing this and so do I."

How were you able to come back and win after that speeding penalty?

"I don't know, maybe I need to do it more often. I don't like doing it that late in the race. Obviously, it makes it a little bit harder and you never know what can happen, especially since we saw those late cautions. That could happen at a point in which I get a speeding penalty and I have to go to the back and we can get caught up in one of those. Fortunately it all worked out our way and played our way. This NOS Energy Drink Camry was fast. (Kevin) Harvick probably had a really, really good car on long runs. He showed that today and probably had the best car but our Camry was just good enough where it needed to be on the front side of those runs where we had enough cautions there at the end that we held him off."

What about Auto Club Speedway is good luck for you?

"I don't know. I was telling somebody earlier in the week, they asked me that and we were talking about the Cup stuff. I said, 'Well, it's really good for me in the Nationwide Series and the Truck Series, I seem to run and win pretty easily here. But, on the Cup side it's a whole 'nother story.' We're hoping that tomorrow is another good day for us, that we can run well and have a good strong effort to where we can get ourselves some points back and get ourselves back in the hunt for the Chase. Overall, today it was about knowing what it takes to get around here. We struggled in practice when we unloaded a little bit. Jason (Ratcliff, crew chief) and I were slinging stuff at it left and right and just trying to make some adjustments to where I could get it where I liked it so I could be comfortable. It worked well for us here this weekend and get it how we wanted, or at least close to how we wanted it. Not quite through the long run but definitely on the short haul."

How wide-open can you drive this track?

"If you could hold it wide-open around here, you'd be faster than anybody else, but you have a wall to watch out for. In my case, I was definitely still out of the throttle, just maybe not as much as some of the other guys."

Were you expecting the cautions late in the race?

"You never know when to count on (cautions). Most of the time when it gets strung out a little bit, you can kind of get a taste of how the race is going to be and what to expect. You just start planning ahead for that. I'm sure Jason (Ratcliff, crew chief) has his book of how the cautions fly and how they work around here. Sometimes they fly pretty consistent to what it has in the past. Knowing what happens, you kind of plan your next stop around those certain times."

JASON RATCLIFF, crew chief, No. 18 NOS Energy Drink Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing

What do you think about today's win at Auto Club Speedway?

"It was a good day for us. The 33 (Kevin Harvick) was stout and we knew that we were going to have to do something special to be able to beat him. There was a point within a run that we were better than him and even at the end of the run, right before we would come down pit road and take fuel, our lap times got a little better than he did. It was making the right adjustments to put it together when we needed and Kyle (Busch) obviously put a good lap down in qualifying and getting us that number one pit stall so that the guys could take advantage of that and get off pit road first. It was a good day, we fought back and forth with different adjustments and Kyle (Busch) made some suggestions when we hit pit road on the last stop. I was concerned that we couldn't get it all done but our catch can guy said he could get it done and he did. Good job by him and good job by all the pit crew guys. It was a good day for us."

-source: toyota motorsports

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About this article
Series NASCAR XFINITY
Drivers Kevin Harvick
Teams Joe Gibbs Racing