October 12 - 18, 2009 Toyota Talk: Michael Remembers Team's First Triumph Vickers Wants Charlotte Victory NEWS, NOTES & NUMBERS: Toyota Camry drivers have combined for nine wins (Busch -- Las Vegas, Bristol-1, Richmond and Bristol-2;...
October 12 - 18, 2009
Michael Remembers Team's First Triumph
Vickers Wants Charlotte Victory
NEWS, NOTES & NUMBERS: Toyota Camry drivers have combined for nine wins (Busch -- Las Vegas, Bristol-1, Richmond and Bristol-2; Hamlin -- Pocono-2 and Richmond-2; Reutimann -- Charlotte; Joey Logano -- New Hampshire; and Vickers -- Michigan-2), 35 top-fives and 64 top-10 finishes through 30 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) races this season ... David Gilliland will attempt to qualify a fourth Joe Gibbs Racing car at Charlotte, the No. 02 Farm Bureau Insurance Camry ... Toyota drivers Busch and Michael Waltrip will run a special pink paint schemes this weekend in conjunction with the Susan G. Komen Foundation to raise breast cancer awareness.
MICHAEL WALTRIP, No. 55 NAPA AUTO PARTS Toyota Camry, Michael Waltrip Racing
How does it feel for the Michael Waltrip Racing team to go back to Charlotte after the organization's first win? "It's been special all year long to have something like that to celebrate. Being able to know that all we've done and as hard as we've worked, and all we've struggled through, to get to a point where we are competitive now. Then, to be able to put an exclamation point on that with the victory and know that was the end of a whole lot of hard, hard work. It was a time when a young group could put their arms around each other and say, 'We have a long way to go but that was a step in the right direction.'"
Do you enjoy racing at Charlotte? "I like Charlotte. It's been a pretty good track for us. We've run really well there. We still haven't won a race there, but we have come very close. It's pretty frustrating because I like that track and I want to win there pretty bad. It was kind of tough there for a few years, but since they repaved it, it's a great track. Now, I think from a racing standpoint, it's better for everybody. The tire is better and the track is starting to wear out. It's getting better and better every year."
DENNY HAMLIN, No. 11 FedEx Office Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing
Is this year any different with Chase drivers racing non-Chase drivers? "Well, I think on the race track, it's been Chase drivers racing Chase drivers. We've all been in the top-five and 10, every single week. We're racing around pretty much each other. There's not been a lot of room for other guys to come in and race us hard if they have the opportunity. I don't think it's any different this year than what it's been in years past. I maybe race someone that's not in the Chase a little bit harder to try to protect position because I know every position that a non-Chaser is between me and the front is more points that I'm losing to the guys I'm racing in points."
DAVID GILLILAND, No. 02 Farm Bureau Insurance Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing
How much do you enjoy racing at night? "I love racing at night. The track has more grip at night, which makes for fast and exciting racing. As for the fans, with it being at night they get to see all the sparks from the cars -- it makes the entire atmosphere different. And (this race) is for home town bragging rights. A lot of employees at the shops are able to bring their families, and everyone wants to show what they've been working so hard on throughout the year."
-credit: toyota motorsports