Charlotte: Ford teams qualifying quotes

JAMIE MCMURRAY -- No. 26 Irwin Ford Fusion (Qualified 28th) "It wasn't that bad. I thought I went a lot faster than I did. It slid a little bit and there wasn't a lot of grip, but the balance wasn't real bad. I guess going out early is ...

JAMIE MCMURRAY -- No. 26 Irwin Ford Fusion (Qualified 28th)

"It wasn't that bad. I thought I went a lot faster than I did. It slid a little bit and there wasn't a lot of grip, but the balance wasn't real bad. I guess going out early is definitely gonna hurt you and it never gets worse here as the sun goes down, but it's 600 miles. If your car is good, you'll be good. If your car is not, it doesn't matter where you start."

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DAVID GILLILAND -- No. 38 M&M's Ford Fusion (Qualified 19th)

"Our Shrek the Third M&M's Ford Fusion was a little bit of a handful out there. We were too tight during the day. We were pretty decent, but I asked the guys to free it up a little bit and it was probably just a little too free, but this place changes so much and I don't have a lot of experience here. It's kind of hard. I'm learning more and more everytime I come here on what I need to ask for, but, overall, it's not too bad. I think we'll race good. We've got a good race setup. We're real confident in that because we tested here for two days and never made one qualifying run. We did all race stuff so I'm very confident and hopefully we can bring home a good finish."

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RICKY RUDD -- No. 88 Snickers Ford Fusion (Qualified 7th)

"We were really good. We were like third-quick in practice and we talked about it. I wanted to go the conservative route. Butch said, 'We need to free it up for tonight,' and I said, 'Maybe so, but we haven't been on this side of the speed chart in a long time, so let's keep it where we've got it.' Had we freed it up and made the right call on that, it had the potential to be a pole sitter. We'll loosen it up quite a bit from here for the race, but we felt like we needed to leave it a little snug to go a fast lap. It was my fault because I told them to keep it conservative."

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DAVID RAGAN -- No. 6 AAA Ford Fusion (Qualified 13th)

"If we can just stay there now, 600 miles is a long way to go. Certainly there are a lot of great cars back there in the mid twenties and thirties. I don't know if we have a 10th-place car or a 15th-place car, but we'll certainly work on it and hopefully we'll get a good pit stall selection. I don't know what to think. It was a good lap, but we'll just have to play it by ear."

A LOT OF GUYS LOOSE AND SPINNING OUT. DID THAT PLAY WITH YOUR MIND AT ALL? "It does a little bit, but that might help me. I was a little conservative and we went faster, so maybe I need to learn a lesson. If I would have gone out there and tried to go too fast and pushed up the track, we might be sitting 35th now, so maybe I need to remember that conservative act every week before qualifying. But this was our plan all along -- to bring this same car that we tested out here. This has been kind of our main car on the mile-and-a-half and two-mile tracks this year, so we're pleased with that but we want a good top-15 finish on Sunday."

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BILL ELLIOTT -- No. 21 U.S. Air Force Ford Fusion (Qualified 22nd)

"I knew I had something to fall back on and I knew if I could hold my breath long enough I'd be OK because the way everything kind of unfolded, it just kind of fell in our hands, plus I was going out late. We didn't really shoot ourselves in the foot. I knew if I could run somewhere in the fifties I'd be OK and that's what I was trying to do."

WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO RUN THE AIR FORCE CAR? "It means a lot. For all the military does for our country, we really don't thank those guys enough for everything they've done and the freedom that we have. The things we can do like come to events like this and the other things that we can do, it's just an honor to be in the 21 car and be in the Air Force car. Hopefully we can have a good weekend."

HOW DO YOU FEEL BEING IN THE 600? "It feels good. We came here a little bit under the gun. I went and tested with these guys the other day and it's a difficult sport. I'm telling you, people don't give these guys enough credit for what they do and how hard they work. We've known the Wood Brothers for a long time and it's just an honor for me to drive their car. I'm just proud to be here."

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MATT KENSETH -- No. 17 DeWalt Ford Fusion (Qualified 5th)

"It was good. We just worked on qualifying today because last week we were happy with our car in race trim and we qualified pretty good. We had a great draw and that was obviously part of it, but we had a pretty decent lap."

-credit: ford racing

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Series NASCAR Cup