Atlanta: Dodge teams race quotes

RYAN NEWMAN (No. 12 Alltel Dodge Charger) ON THE RACE TODAY: "We had a good a car -- a top-10 car most of the day. (Juan) Montoya couldn't hold the steering wheel straight going down the back straightaway and drove up into me and knocked my...

RYAN NEWMAN (No. 12 Alltel Dodge Charger)

ON THE RACE TODAY: "We had a good a car -- a top-10 car most of the day. (Juan) Montoya couldn't hold the steering wheel straight going down the back straightaway and drove up into me and knocked my fender in. We had to pit - we had tire rub - it's unfortunate that we couldn't get a yellow late in the race to get on the lead lap. I'm positive that our Alltel Dodge Charger was better than 14th - I guarantee you that."


KURT BUSCH (No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger)

HOW DIFFICULT WAS THE RACING TODAY? "The tires just made it more of a handful. It was a long race for us. We were very, very loose at the beginning. We were probably 20th with the lap down cars, so we were in our own race for three-quarters of the race. When we did get the lucky dog, it was green to the end, so we had a tough time catching up. We did grab two extra spots at the end as we continued to battle. I don't think we could have finished any higher. We worked really hard for 11th and it feels good."


BOBBY LABONTE (No. 43 Cheerios/Betty Crocker Dodge Charger)

ON THE RACE TODAY: "I thought that we were way better at the beginning of the race today. We just could never find the tune-up later in the day. We just have something that we're given up a little bit -- it's just crazy -- we can undo and redo, we just never seem to make it better. It was still a good top-12 for the No. 43 Cheerios/Betty Crocker Dodge Charger and we'll just try and build on that for Bristol."


KASEY KAHNE (No. 9 Budweiser Dodge Charger)

HOW MUCH OF A HANDFUL WAS YOUR RACE CAR TODAY? "We just started further forward (in our tune-up) in the first part of the race so it wasn't as obvious how bad we were at the start of the race. The longer we went on with the race, the harder it was to figure it out. It was hard to get it right. Everybody struggled with the conditions as far as grip with that tire -- definitely some more than others."


ROBBY GORDON (No. 7 Valvoline Dodge Charger)

ON THE RACE TODAY: "I don't know. Twenty-fourth I guess at the end of it is the brightest thing to say about the day. We had a pretty good car at times. We just didn't take off on every restart. We paid a price for the first 15 or so laps and it just took too long for the car to come into play. Towards the end of our runs we were pretty good with the Valvoline Dodge Charger."

ON THE TIRES: "I didn't have any problems. I don't know about my teammates, but I don't think that they popped them either. We slid around man. It's a wild ride out there for sure."


JUAN PABLO MONTOYA (No. 42 Wrigley's Big Red Dodge Charger)

ON THE RACE TODAY: "It was an OK day. We never could get a good line all day long. We were really loose out of the corners and never could get a consistent run. It was really tough to get any grip most of the day and when the track got warmer, it made it even worse. I was happy that we were able to get a top-15 finish for our Wrigley's Big Red Dodge Charger."


DARIO FRANCHITTI (No. 41 Fastenal Dodge Charger)

ON THE RACE TODAY: "It was important to finish. It's just like every week for us -- a learning experience. I can not believe how loose the cars were all day. I think everybody was in the same boat and just hanging on. We hit the wall a couple times just exit just with the thing being so loose and the rear being stuck out so much, but we finished. We kind of got hurt there -- Edwards put us on the same lap as a bunch of the guys ahead of us and Edwards just lapped us and then blew up, by which point that got us a lap further down which we didn't need. I drove as hard as I could all day. My guys did a great job with the pit stops. We just couldn't get the adjustments in the car to handle the way we needed."

ON GETTING LAPS AND EXPERIENCE: "Oh, it's important. It's important to get experience, but I just wish I had some better results to show for it. We are all doing our best."

HOW CONCERNED ARE YOU ABOUT THE TOP-35? "It is what it is. We'll just do our best and if we're out, we're out. We'll just have to do qualifying performances like we did on Friday night. If we end up out of it we'll work our way back in -- there's nothing else you can do."

ON BRISTOL: "Bristol is going to be wild. In one way I'm looking forward to it. We'll see what happens."


ELLIOTT SADLER (No. 19 Best Buy Dodge Charger)

ON THE RACE TODAY: "We struggled from the minute we unloaded here on Friday, even though we qualified pretty well. We kept trying different things on Saturday during practice to get better. Once the race started, it quickly became apparent we were going to be in for a long day. We tried air pressure, track bar and shock adjustments throughout the race but I just couldn't get the rear grip I needed. At times, it felt like we were about to wreck almost every lap. I hate that we had to end the race like we did, especially after the great one we had in Las Vegas last week. All we can do is go back to the shop and fix this car, look over our notes, talk to our teammates and try to figure out how we can be better at 1.5 mile tracks. I know this Best Buy Dodge team is totally capable of achieving that task."

WHAT HAPPENED WHEN YOU SPUN AND HIT THE WALL? "Turn Two was really tough for us today. I spun that one time and the back bumper was a little bent up from nudging the outside wall, but the car wasn't damaged too badly. On that last spin, I was just trying too hard and the back end came around coming off Turn 2 and we ended up nose first on the inside wall. I know this hurts us in the points, but the good news is we're headed to Bristol. I like that track and we'll do all we can to get our points back."


SAM HORNISH JR. (No. 77 Penske Truck Rental Dodge Charger)

ON THE RACE TODAY: "We got a lot of laps in and the car was really good on the first run and then from there we just couldn't get it back tightened up. It was so free I felt like I was running on dirt most of the race [smile]. But we kept it underneath us and kept running out there. It's definitely a learning experience. All the guys on the Penske Truck Rental Dodge did a great job for me in the pits today. We're all getting used to working with each other and trying to make the right directions, that's tough enough to do in practice let alone on the fly in the race so I was pretty happy with that. I was a little bit frustrated at times with the car, just decided that we couldn't get any better.

Next week will be different and each time we go to one of these races and get to run the full thing I've got a better idea of what I need out of the car the next time we come back. We were pretty loose all the time and had a really tough time getting it off the corner going sideways most of the time [smiles]."

HOW DIFFICULT IS IT TO RACE HARD AND RACE FOR POSITIION BUT RACE RESPECTFULLY? "You've got to be careful running with the guys that are on the lead lap. Even other guys if they consistently get a run on you, you've kind of got to let 'em go by, as long as they do the same thing for you. A lot of guys want you to let them go by if they've got six inches of their nose up there, but you can be all the way up beside them and they won't life. It's just getting to know everybody and running with and who you can run side-by-side with and them getting comfortable with you, too, and feeling like they can let you go because you'll let them go next time."


PATRICK CARPENTIER (No. 10 Cintas Dodge Charger)

"It was a long day and a long race. Being loose makes it pretty long. We fixed it at one point, got it tighter and started running some decent laps; but at the beginning I was way loose and using the rear tires a little too much there. We're learning and trying to figure out ways to make it smoother and try making it better a

little bit and make myself better and everything. To run the whole race makes us pretty happy. Thanks to Cintas who came in (as a sponsor) this weekend. We got some points this weekend, so that's not too bad. It's hard work. It's a tough deal."

ON POINTS: "It's important, but missing Daytona cost us some good points there. Missing California put us behind. We got put in the wall at Vegas, so we basically missed three races. We're behind, so we'll see if we can get back into it a little bit later. We seem to not be too bad qualifying, so hopefully we can keep making races and getting those points."

-credit: dodge motorsports

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Series NASCAR Cup