Wednesday, Oct. 6, 1999. Lowe's Motor Speedway. Bud Pole qualifying for UAW-GM Quality 500. Chevrolet notes and quotes. KENNY WALLACE (No. 55 Square D Chevrolet Monte Carlo) NOTE: Wallace posted the fastest lap by any Monte Carlo driver...
Wednesday, Oct. 6, 1999. Lowe's Motor Speedway. Bud Pole qualifying for UAW-GM Quality 500. Chevrolet notes and quotes.
KENNY WALLACE (No. 55 Square D Chevrolet Monte Carlo)
NOTE: Wallace posted the fastest lap by any Monte Carlo driver in first-round qualifying.
"Turn one and two was good. The car bottomed out in three and four extremely bad. We handled really good here the last time and we're still handling good, but for some reason we've been fighting a bottoming out problem the whole time we've been here. We picked up from practice, but the track is going to be faster. I was hoping to run in the .30s. I think that'll make first round. We ran a .22 here last time for third spot, and I think you're going to have about eight cars in the .20s. I thought we would end up somewhere between 15th and 20th, but I may be surprised."
DALE EARNHARDT (No. 3 GM Goodwrench Service Plus Monte Carlo)
"We did better than practiced, but I was about a tenth slower than I should have been. I'm afraid everybody is going to pick up. This is the same car we had here in May. It really felt good here in May. I'm surprised we ended up 17th fastest tonight. I thought we would end up about 36th."
STEVE PARK (No. 1 Pennzoil Chevrolet Monte Carlo)
"We brought a lot of confidence back here from May. This is the same car we had here in May and led all those laps with. My hat's off to the motor shop. Those guys have been working real hard. We came here with the same car with a little more horsepower. We ran about the same speed we practiced. I think this car is going to race good all day Sunday. I love Charlotte. This is kind of home for all of us. It's nice to be able to race in your own back yard in front of all these fans. We're here for a little redemption. We had a great car here last time. I got myself caught up in a wreck leading the race. We're going to avoid that this time and keep that Pennzoil Chevrolet up front. That's as fast as we've run all day. We've been having a little bit of a problem with the car bottoming out a little bit. I got into one and the car bottomed out. It got me about half a groove up. We're happy with it. We know we're going to race real good Sunday."
JEFF GORDON (No. 24 DuPont Automotive Finishes Monte Carlo)
"We really haven't been that good all day. We're going to get knocked back quite a bit. The last time we were here we didn't qualify very good. We used to be able to knock off some awesome laps here. I'm not sure what's changed. We just haven't had that good feel where you can drive that thing in deep and jump back in the throttle. We got better. I should have run faster than that. The car was better than it was in practice. We made some changes right before we went out. It felt better than I thought it was going to."
TERRY LABONTE (No. 5 Kellogg's Chevrolet Monte Carlo)
"We should have been a little bit better, but the car was really good and I got out of the gas a little too early in turn one and left a little bit out there. We had been bottoming out a little bit, so I was a little worried about hitting the gas. We picked up a little bit from practice, but we didn't get to practice much because we lost an engine. I think it's really going to be good in the race. I don't think anybody can touch (brother) Bobby's lap."
RICKY CRAVEN (No. 50 Midwest Transit Chevrolet Monte Carlo)
"We had fluid running out of the car all the way around the track. These guys worked so hard. When you come to Charlotte you put it all on the line for one lap. It's a tough pill to swallow. We could have been a little faster. I can't believe our speed held up for the 27th spot."
MICHAEL WALTRIP (No. 7 Philips Chevrolet Monte Carlo)
"I knew I got through three and four coming to get the green pretty good. I just got down into turn one and overshot the turn and hurt the lap pretty bad. I picked up a tenth, but I had about three I was sitting on I thought. All day in practice we kept gaining on it. I thought I could run down in the .30s easy, and I think I could if I hadn't messed up, but I messed up. The car ran good. We're real happy with the car but just a little disappointed with that lap."
GEOFFREY BODINE (No. 60 Power Team Chevrolet Monte Carlo)
"We're happy with it. We gained from practice. This is a new car and hasn't ever been raced. We got about 15 laps of practice, so we're pretty happy with it. We'll work on the race setup. We think it'll be good in the race. Martinsville was a really good run for us. We're real happy about that, but we didn't win it. I've been in this business long enough. Finishing third isn't winning. When we win, I'm going to be riding a high. Until that, we're just doing our jobs. Last week we did it really well. Hopefully this week we'll do the same thing."
STERLING MARLIN (No. 40 Coors Light Chevrolet Monte Carlo)
"That's the best lap we'd run all day. It's a car we qualified seventh with at Michigan and about 12th at Darlington, but we didn't qualify good with it here in the spring. We were going to finish about sixth or seventh in the race and it looks like that'll be the deal again. We'll start about 35th and be running about 20th in 15 or 20 laps. We'll be in the top 10 in about 40 laps. It just won't turn any rpm's. I don't know what's wrong with it."
JOE NEMECHEK (No. 42 BellSouth Chevrolet Monte Carlo)
"I'm not sure what happened. Either I cut a right-front tire down. I was back in the gas really early in three and four. That's the only way I was going to get a run at Bobby. I knew we had something for him. It was going to be really close. Either that or I just had too much corner speed on the exit.
The whole car just shot up the track and hit the wall pretty hard. It's really unfortunate. This whole team is working hard, and the engine shop gave me a great motor. I think we hurt it pretty bad, but we'll get the backup car out and get going again. You just drive in three and let off the gas and the guy who can pick it up the earliest and hold it wide open off will go the fastest. I was trying to do that and just didn't make it. That thing got hot quick. It was time to get out. You could feel that heat and smoke coming up in there. I wanted out. This backup car is nowhere near what that other one was. We'll see what happens, but it might be a pretty tall order to get in on speed tomorrow."
MIKE SKINNER (No. 31 Lowe's Chevrolet Monte Carlo)
"The car was awesome all day. The last practice run we made we went into one and got loose, but I drove in there way too deep. We really thought the Lowe's Chevy was going to have an awfully good shot at the pole tonight, if not, at least a top three or four spot. I tried to make sure I didn't overdrive it. It was loose going to the flag. Loose in one and two and loose in three and four. I was just trying to hang on for dear life. It felt like Bristol. I was out of breath when I got done with that thing."
BOBBY HAMILTON (No. 4 KODAK MAX Film Chevrolet Monte Carlo)
"It was a practice motor. We broke our qualifying motor. I felt like we could have run a .10 with our qualifying motor. It was about a 300 rpm difference. We broke it when we made a simulated qualifying run at the end of practice. The car drives good. It's pretty well idiot-proof now. It was junk when we unloaded it, but they worked hard on it and got it driving perfect, so we're pretty happy about it."