Atlanta II: Ford teams race quotes

GREG BIFFLE -- No. 16 3M Ford Fusion (Finished 10th) "I'm glad we picked the right way to go on this thing because we were in big trouble. It just worked out. I hate it. Mark Martin spun his tires on the last restart and cost us probably...

GREG BIFFLE -- No. 16 3M Ford Fusion (Finished 10th)

"I'm glad we picked the right way to go on this thing because we were in big trouble. It just worked out. I hate it. Mark Martin spun his tires on the last restart and cost us probably three finishing spots and right now those spots are critical. I don't know what else to say. I gave up three spots and didn't get any of them back. There just wasn't enough time. I don't know where we finished, but it was a good run."

DO YOU FEEL LIKE YOU DODGED A BULLET TONIGHT? "Yeah, especially after the way this thing started and the way the car was before the race."

WAS IT HARD TO GET GRIP TONIGHT AND DID THAT SURPRISE YOU? "No, it was like that when we unloaded and we just never got a hold of it."


MATT KENSETH -- No. 17 R&L Carriers Ford Fusion (Finished 12th)

"I don't feel real good about it. We were pretty optimistic in practice yesterday and we started the race way off. I ran into the wall, which isn't their fault, it's my fault, and that hurt us a little bit. But it's just so inconsistent and hard to drive. I don't know. We just can't really seem to figure out how to get these cars to go fast."

WAS IT HARD KEEPING UP WITH THE RACE TRACK TONIGHT? "I don't think we had much idea what we were doing, to be honest with you. We started so far off. We got it really good for one run and tried to change it just a little bit more and made it worse, so I don't know. We kept going one way or the other and could never get it really right. We had one run that was really, really good and that's it. We could never get it to drive like that again and I have no idea why."

AN INCREDIBLE COMEBACK IS WHAT IT LOOKED LIKE FROM THE OUTSIDE. "Well, it probably would have been if we would have finished fifth or sixth or seventh, but at the end there we just couldn't go anywhere on restarts because we had something in the car wrong. The splitter would drag so hard that there was no possible way you could turn. I lost five, six or seven spots on that restart, so it's pretty frustrating."

HOLDING ON TO 12TH IS THAT A POSITIVE TONIGHT? "Not really. We run so bad. I just want to run good and be back up front where we belong. We have a championship-caliber team as far as personnel. Our pit stops have been pretty good. We had a really good one right at the end when we needed it, and we're capable of much better than this, and, to be honest with you, more so than the chase I'm trying to think of how in the world we're gonna get this team back to running up front where it should be and leading laps and contending for wins because we haven't done that since Fontana."

YOU CAN'T ADJUST THE SPLITTER BACK UP? YOU'RE STUCK WITH IT ALL NIGHT LIKE THAT? "We could have and had to go to the back. We knew it was dragging about lap 30, but we chose not to. On a long run, you could live with it, but it's gonna get worse as the night goes on and they just decided not to mess with it. You can put shims in there and that's something you can do on a pit stop, but it costs you time."


CARL EDWARDS -- No. 99 Aflac Ford Fusion (Finished 37th)

WHAT HAPPENED? "We had something go through the oil cooler. That's too bad because we had a really good race car. I think we could have finished top three with it and maybe contended for the win."


DAVID GILLILAND -- No. 21 Motorcraft Ford Fusion (Finished 19th)

YOU WEREN'T IN THE CAR UNTIL YESTERDAY? "No, that was my first time seeing any of the guys and working with them or anything, so I'm proud of what we were able to do. We ran really strong at the beginning of the race and the car got kind of loose on us and kind of lost it, but we made some good adjustments there at the end and crept back up on it. We just never could get the right break, but to finish on the lead lap and finish 19th, all in all it was not a bad day."

YOU AND HYDER SPEAK THE SAME LANGUAGE? "Yeah, absolutely. He's a racer and he believes what you're telling him in the race car, which is helpful, and that's awesome. Everybody was awesome to work with. We made great adjustments and everytime I told him what it was doing we came in and the tire-pressure builds said exactly the same thing as I was saying, so we were on the same page all night. It took us just a little bit longer to get caught up to it than we wanted, but he was saying that run before the end that ourselves and the cars running first and second were the only cars in the 33-second bracket for that whole run. So we made the car a lot better, it was fast, and we were able to drive up there and pick up some spots."

THAT'S GOOD TO HAVE WOOD BROTHERS DRIVER ON YOUR RESUME. "Yeah, absolutely. It can't hurt being on there. At this point in my career right now, I don't have anything going for next year, so runs like this and teams like that calling me and asking me to drive, it only helps."


DAVID RAGAN -- No. 6 UPS Ford Fusion (Finished 33rd)

"I felt like we had a top 20 car, we just really fought a forward bite issue coming off of the corners and keeping the rear tires under us. We could go back and forth through the middle of the corner. Then I made a mistake that cost us 10 spots there under green with speeding on pit road, and that was very disappointing. We didn't have the best car, but we had a good car that we could work on and we were still hit-and-miss the last part of the race. But, with the speeding penalty and just not being able to make the right adjustments on the car throughout the night held us back. The car is in one piece and hopefully we're able to learn from what we did here tonight and apply that to some of the other mile-and-a-half tracks that we'll go to throughout the rest of the season."


BEN LESLIE, Crew Chief -- No. 96 Academy Sports + Outdoors Ford Fusion (Erik Darnell finished 30th)

HOW DID ERIK DO TONIGHT. HE WANTED TO COMPLETE ALL THE LAPS AND HE FINISHED ALL BUT TWO. "He did great. This is a really daunting place and it was a daunting place with the old car not to mention the COT car with the less downforce and the splitter and everything that came with that. Erik did a spectacular job. He stuck with it. He didn't put himself in a position to get himself wrecked. He didn't overdrive the car to where he would have put himself in a position to wreck. His feedback was very concise and to the point. When we made gains on the things that he was complaining about he ran faster. I couldn't be happier. It sounds funny to say that you're really happy with a 30th-place finish, but given all the circumstances and looking at this as his very first COT race and he's out there racing against Jamie McMurray and David Ragan -- at one point he passed Tony Stewart and Ryan Newman -- that's pretty spectacular. We'll build on it from here."

-credit: ford racing

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Tony Stewart , Ryan Newman , Jamie McMurray , David Ragan , Erik Darnell , Mark Martin