Saturday, March 3, 2001. Las Vegas Motor Speedway. UAW-DaimlerChrysler 400. Rookie Casey Atwood, a 20-year-old Raybestos rookie of the year contender, led a 1-2-3-4 Dodge sweep in Saturday's Happy Hour practice at Las Vegas Motor Speedway....
Saturday, March 3, 2001. Las Vegas Motor Speedway. UAW-DaimlerChrysler 400.
Rookie Casey Atwood, a 20-year-old Raybestos rookie of the year contender,
led a 1-2-3-4 Dodge sweep in Saturday's Happy Hour practice at Las Vegas
Motor Speedway. Atwood posted a lap of 165.107 mph in his No. 19 Dodge
Dealers Dodge Intrepid R/T. He was followed by Dodge drivers Sterling Marlin
at 164.810 mph, Dave Blaney at 164.634 mph and Ward Burton at 164.594 mph.
CASEY ATWOOD (No. 19 Dodge Dealers Dodge Intrepid R/T)
"We won our first Happy Hour. We've got to work on it a little bit more. We were real fast on the short runs, but we fell off a little bit more than we wanted to. We're going to think about it tonight and try to get it a little better on the long runs and see if we can't have a good finish Sunday. We ran about 20-25 laps. We're really not bad, but to be competitive in this race and to be where we want to be, we need to make it a little better on the long runs. I definitely think we've got a top 10 car. I like this track. I came here in '99 and didn't make this race. We were a young team over there in the Busch Series and came here and didn't know some of the hot tricks and didn't make it. Last year we had a chance at winning the race and had a problem on pit road. I like the track and I always look forward to coming here. About all there is for me to do here is sit in the room and eat. Next year I'll be 21 and ready to lose some money. Heck, I can't even rent a car. You've got to be 24 to do that. We're having a great time. It always feels good when you qualify decent and you're pretty fast in practice. That makes the weekend a lot better. We're happy, but we really feel like we can be in contention to win this race if we get it a little better. We've got a balanced body on these Dodges, and they drive better than any car I've ever driven before. All the Dodges will be pretty good, I think."
STERLING MARLIN (No. 40 Coors Light Dodge Intrepid R/T)
"We're still a little bit tight, but it doesn't get any worse. It just stays a little bit snug. We didn't start out on stickers. We started practice on the tires we had on yesterday. We put stickers on that last run, and it was pretty good. We haven't been that good here before. This is the best car I've had here. We're ready to roll. I've got a good feeling about the race. The car is driving good, so we're just going to leave it alone."
DAVE BLANEY (No. 93 Amoco Ultimate Dodge Intrepid R/T)
"I don't know how much practice means. About 15 laps into the run, we weren't as good as we need to be. You've got to be good 15 in and stay good. We've got a little work to do. We didn't help it any, but I think we found some things we don't want to do. We'll go from there. We just need to find a way to keep the right front tire underneath us and we'll go to the front." WARD BURTON (No. 22 Caterpillar Dodge Intrepid R/T)
"We're talking things over and trying to get a little better. We had a chance to win here before and didn't take advantage of it, so we want to make sure we've got all our bases covered tomorrow. The car is running pretty good, but it's one thing to do it in practice and another thing to do it in the race. We went from the back to the front in '99, and we don't have that far to go tomorrow. Hopefully, we'll be able to get there."