KYLE BUSCH, No. 18 M&M's Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing Starting Position: 2nd How was your qualifying run? "It was good. It was fast. We probably could've had a little bit more but not much. It was a good run for the M&M's Camry. I'm real...
KYLE BUSCH, No. 18 M&M's Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing
Starting Position: 2nd
How was your qualifying run? "It was good. It was fast. We probably could've had a little bit more but not much. It was a good run for the M&M's Camry. I'm real happy with that and the way the guys and Dave (Rogers, crew chief) have been working real hard on everything. We'll take that with our Camry and see what we can't get here tomorrow. We'll work on some race trim stuff and get better for Sunday."
Are you pleased with your starting position for Sunday's race? "Yeah, we are. We got a good lap in. I was real happy with the way it turned out when I was done qualifying and then a couple cars later we get beat but that's just what happens sometimes. I felt really good about our lap. I got the most out of it that I felt I could get. Maybe there was a little more but really nothing that was a whole lot. Overall it was good. Practice went well today. I'm real happy with the way the car acted in race trim. We started there and then we switched over into qualifying trim and the car was pretty decent. I'm looking forward to tomorrow to get some more practice in for the race on Sunday."
Do you have any concerns with speed on Sunday? "No, I don't think so. I think everything is good. Goodyear has done a lot of research and has done a good job on the tire. They had an awesome tire on what I saw in Las Vegas and they came here and did another tire test and found another good one here. From what I hear, it does well over the course of 40 or so laps. There's still going to be some fall off. We might run some laps 29.50-29.60 range tomorrow, maybe even a little bit slower to start on new tires in the race and then we'll fall off from there. There's going to be some fall off still so you won't see the speeds as high as you did tonight."
Is there a way to describe what the sensation of that is like running a lap here at Atlanta? "It's hard to explain to be honest with you I guess. The only thing I've ever really been able to give a close description of is pick your favorite off-ramp that the round ones, you know, and drive it as hard as you can drive it and see if it sticks. That's about as best as I can give a description. Here at Atlanta after about 40 laps it's like doing that off-ramp while it's raining. Good luck. To me, it's a fun race track here. You don't really hold your breath. I don't really hold my breath that much if any at all. You just drive it off into the corner and once it sticks you get back in it and try to exit fast. This is a really, really fast speedway. I don't think the sensation really hits you because the corners are wide. You've got a lot of room on the exit of the corners as well -- off of (turn) two and off of four. Texas it will come up on you a little bit quicker -- the speed does on the exit of the corner. Charlotte because the track is a little bit narrower front straightaway to back straightaway you feel a little bit more speed there as well, and the track is a little bit narrower in itself from white line to the wall. Those are the places that you can feel it a little bit more."
How do you feel Joe Gibbs Racing has performed so far this season? "I feel like we're decent. I feel like we're competitive at least. We're not way far behind. I feel anybody can always be better. You always want to have more. You always want to be faster. I think we've come a long way in chassis development on the 18 side and some aero stuff. I think the 11 is just going to start seeing some of those trends here soon with new cars and stuff like that as well. As far as the engine power plant goes, I don't think we're that far off. You develop a lot of straightaway speed by corner speed so that's where I feel like we can always gain the most. As far as Nationwide or Truck stuff goes I still feel like we're down there with the way the plate is on the Toyota engines versus the Chevrolet and the Ford's. I don't know how many Chevrolet guys are running the R07. The R07 would run the same plate as us. (Kevin) Harvick might be the better judge on that because he runs both sometimes- the SB2 and the R07."
DAVID REUTIMANN, No. 00 Aaron's Dream Machine Toyota Camry, Michael Waltrip Racing
Starting Position: 9th
Are you happy with your qualifying run? "That's about as much as we had. I think we picked up about seven-tenths so it was a pretty good pickup for us. We gave up a little bit in one and two. We were pretty good in three and four but one and two we lost some of what we needed. All in all it was a good effort for the guys. It's not a pole but hopefully it will hold up for a top-10 and give us a good starting position and a good pit selection and all of the things we need for the race."
Did you 'bottom out' during your qualifying run? "Actually it got on the race track just a little bit but not as much as anticipated. Not only with the tape up on the nose but the track temperatures being down. We're talking some guys picking up close to a second on lap time and if you pick up that much speed you're going to have trouble getting on the race track. But it wasn't bad. Rodney Childers (crew chief) and the guys did a good job anticipating what was going to happen so it was okay."
MARCOS AMBROSE, No. 47 Lance/Tom's Toyota Camry, JTG-Daugherty Racing
Starting Position: 12th
How was your qualifying lap? "Well I didn't do a very good job whatever I chose to do. The sun is bright and it's not too bright and you think, 'Oh, I'll get away with it.' But it's just in the wrong spot. As you turn into (turn) one it just hits you between the eyes. And I thought I'm going to stay up high and I'm going to be high because I didn't want to go low and then once I got through the sun I was too low. You just really roll the dice and I don't know. It's the way it is. We've had pretty bad draws here lately. We had a great car. We've got Lance onboard for the first time this year and we're really excited about that. We've got a strong race car. I'm sure we'll give it a chance to run in the top-10 or maybe we'll get it to victory lane."
MARTIN TRUEX JR., No. 56 NAPA Toyota Camry, Michael Waltrip Racing
Starting Position: 19th
How was your qualifying lap? "It was okay. I thought we would've been a little bit better than that. I think a lot of the guys run 29 flat so we were just on the wrong end of that. I really have been pretty happy with the car all day especially in race trim so hopefully tomorrow will be great. I thought we'd have went a little quicker than that tonight. We had a really good run right at the end of practice but it was on an older set of tires. We probably just got the car a little bit too free for tonight."
DENNY HAMLIN, No. 11 FedEx Office Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing
Starting Position: 20th
Have you had any problems with 'bottoming out' on the race track? "We fought it in practice but we didn't fight it there. We just struggled for the most part to keep our car off the race track. We've got to fix there."
Are you happy with your qualifying run? "I thought I had a good lap. I felt like it was relatively smooth but the field is so tight I need a little bit more time and it would pick you up a whole lot. We were struggling all except for that one run at the end of practice to find speed and it's still the same kind of struggles."
DAVE BLANEY, No. 66 Toyota Camry, PRISM Motorsports
Starting Position: 27th
JOEY LOGANO, No. 20 Home Depot Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing
Starting Position: 29th
How was your qualifying run? "It wasn't good. When I went in there it was fine but you couldn't see and just kind of guessing in the corners because the sun was really in my eyes. I just got up in the gas and just the nose took off and then just a four-wheel drive up to the fence. It kind of sucked but it is what it is now."
How was your car in race trim during practice? "It's good in race trim. I just haven't figured this place out in qualifying trim yet. I don't know what it is."
MAX PAPIS, No. 13 GEICO Toyota Camry, Germain Racing
Starting Position: 31st
JOE NEMECHEK, No. 87 FrontRowJoe.com Toyota Camry, NEMCO Motorsports
Starting Position: 33rd
ROBBY GORDON, No. 7 Warner Music Nashville/Blake Shelton Toyota Camry, Robby Gordon Motorsports
Starting Position: 39th
MICHAEL McDOWELL, No. 55 Toyota Camry, PRISM Motorsports
Starting Position: 43rd
-source: toyota motorsports