MATT KENSETH - No. 17 Crown Royal Black Ford Fusion WHAT IS YOUR GAMEPLAN WITH TWO RACES LEFT BEFORE THE CHASE STARTS? "It's the same as every other week, go out and try to run the best we can and get a couple of solid finishes." HOW...
MATT KENSETH - No. 17 Crown Royal Black Ford Fusion
WHAT IS YOUR GAMEPLAN WITH TWO RACES LEFT BEFORE THE CHASE STARTS? "It's the same as every other week, go out and try to run the best we can and get a couple of solid finishes."
HOW IMPORTANT ARE WINS FOR YOU AT THIS POINT AS FAR AS BONUS POINTS FOR THE CHASE? "It's always important, but you try to win every week from Daytona all the way to Homestead and we really haven't been close to winning here in a couple of months, but the last couple of weeks it seems like we've been improving and have been running more towards the front. Unless you're really, really lucky, you've got to get running up in the top five cars week in and week out, and leading laps, and put yourself in position before you're gonna be winning races, so we're just trying to get better every week."
HOW IMPORTANT IS MOMENTUM GOING INTO THE CHASE? "I've been on both ends of it and I'm not sure that it matters that much. It's really what you do when you get to New Hampshire all the way through Homestead. You always want to run good every week. The better you run, the better mood everybody is in and the more upbeat everybody is, so you always want to put together good runs and try to keep that momentum going."
WITH THE TEAM'S AND FORD'S OVERALL IMPROVEMENT, DO YOU THINK YOU'LL HAVE SOMETHING FOR THEM WHEN THE CHASE STARTS? "I hope so. You never know what's gonna happen each and every week, much less 10 weeks in the chase. You just never know what's gonna happen, so I think the 16 has certainly been our best car - the fastest car with the most speed and probably the most consistent lately. They've been pretty strong and they look like they can run with most cars any given day, but you never really know what everybody's got until you get to the first couple of weeks."
YOU HAVE A 275-POINT LEAD OVER 13TH-PLACE RIGHT NOW. ARE YOU ALLOWING YOURSELF TO THINK ABOUT THE CHASE YET, OR ARE YOU STILL FOCUSING ON THESE LAST TWO RACES AS THOUGH NOTHING IS A GIVEN? "I honestly didn't know how many points ahead we were until you just told me. I don't really look at it. I know if we have a couple solid runs, we'll be in so that's really my focus. It's a busy day here at Atlanta with the way the practices are and qualifying, so we've been working as hard as we can to make sure our car has the speed in it that we need it to have for Sunday night."
YOU GUYS GOT SOME HELP FROM RPM AT MIDSEASON. IS THAT SOMETHING THAT'S STILL GOING ON? "They've all been working together. All eight teams all year have been sharing information from engineers to chassis to car. It's all kind of one big eight-car team, really. Everybody has been working together all year and that hasn't been any different from week one to right now."
POSSIBLY LOSING TWO TEAMS FROM RPM FOR NEXT YEAR, WILL THAT HURT ROUSH FENWAY? "I don't think so. Everybody's got a different view and opinion on that. Some guys have the bigger is better view, and other guys like myself probably think that if you're a little smaller and had a few less people to work on projects, you might be better off - kind of like the Ganassi team. They only have two teams this year and look how good they've been doing, so sometimes I think that maybe thinning it down a little bit would be better just for the race car's performance, but I don't know about the business end of it."
IF THERE'S 15 LAPS TO GO WHAT WOULD YOU RATHER HAVE, OLD TIRES AND CLEAN AIR UP FRONT OR FRESH TIRES AND BACK IN TRAFFIC? "It totally depends on the track. Here, in the past - this tire might be a little different - but if you have more than 10 laps on your tires, you're gonna want new tires. You'll want at least a couple and, more likely, four of them, so it really depends on the track. You'll go to tracks, depending on the tire they bring in, where the tires don't drop off much and you'd rather be in the front."
-source: ford racing