Chevrolet Bud Shootout notes

Dale Earnhardt, No. 3 GMGoodwrench Service Plus Chevrolet Monte Carlo (noting last year's race, Bill France Sr. would be rolling in his grave): "But I'd say he'd be jumping around this year about this kind of racing. Well, it was pretty exciting.

Dale Earnhardt, No. 3 GMGoodwrench Service Plus Chevrolet Monte Carlo (noting last year's race, Bill France Sr. would be rolling in his grave): "But I'd say he'd be jumping around this year about this kind of racing. Well, it was pretty exciting. But he (Stewart) had too strong a car. He got back by me down the back straightaway. Just couldn't keep side to side with him. If I could have stayed side by side with him, I could have raced him. But I just couldn't do that. We were on older tires because we pitted early. And our tires were all worn out. So we were just sort of sliding around the top."

Richard Childress, team owner, RCR: "I really like the new aero package. It put racing into it (the race), it put a lot of passing into it. The fans seen of passing -- probably more passing in this Shootout than they've seen in the last two or three. All day long, we run faster than we qualified. Both our cars were really loose, but they just hung on to it. I feel better this year than I did last year. Last year, we knew it was a Ford event or a Pontiac. This year, we feel Chevrolet's in there with them."

Jeff Gordon, No. 24 DuPont Automotive Finishes Chevrolet Monte Carlo: "I just know that we came in too soon. I shouldn't have came in to pit when I did. I wanted to stay with Earnhardt (Sr.), and I should have been staying with the other Earnhardt (Jr.). We were on old tires out there it put us way behind."

Dale Earnhardt Jr., No. 8Budweiser Chevrolet Monte Carlo: "I couldn't run up top where my dad was because my car was real tight and it'd just push up there. So I kind of had to run to the middle and the bottom at turn one and it opened a hole up there for him and he took it. I was lucky to get back, I thought it was going to be worse than that. It was real tight up high and would just slide and I'd have to get off the gas. And you've got to run wide open to be up front. I had to hang the left front fender out from inside of Tony (Stewart) to get my car to turn.If I run behind him or high, it'd push real bad. The aero (rules) wasn't that bad. I thought we was going to be a lot worse than that. The start of the race, we were three wide there for a couple laps and that was kind of scary. And I think everybody realized and they kind of calmed down. Some of the guys will do that in the 125's. I think you'll see a lot of that. Once the race kind of calmed down, and once the tires get hot like I said, everybody was kind of sliding around, so you can't run side by side and get anywhere. Everybody kind of stayed in the high lane and waited for somebody to jump out and make a move and you saw a lot of guys pull out and not get no help and that's why because you can't work down there."

Joe Nemechek, No. 33Oakwood Homes Chevrolet Monte Carlo: "It was a pretty boring race from my standpoint. It was bad. The No. 36 car oiled everybody's windows down at the start of the race and no one could see. I mean you couldn't see. So you just had to kind of fall back and gauge who you were around and who you could follow. You couldn't even see to get in the pits. I think NASCAR should have made a different call there. After they black-flagged him, he came back out there right in front of me and oiled me down again. It was a big let down for us. We thought this Oakwood Homes Chevy would run a lot better than it did. I've got a fast racecar, it just wasn't in the right spot."

Steve Park, No. 1 Pennzoil Chevrolet Monte Carlo: "We got caught in that oil. Unfortunately. We had a good racecar, we got so much oil on the windshield, we just couldn't see where we were going. There's not much you can do when you can't see. It hurt us because guys were pitting and I slowed down because they slowed down. I didn't see no hand wave coming into the pits and I'm sure they were (waving). Just a lack of visibility. So we lost a lot of momentum when those guys pitted and we got jammed behind them. It just ruined the whole day for us. We learned a little bit to make us a little better in the 500."

Terry Labonte, No. 5Kellogg's Chevrolet Monte Carlo: "We got behind Schrader and the windshield was all oiled up. I literally couldn't see. We pitted on lap 25 and changed four tires when most everyone else only took two (tires), and that cost us sometime. But the car was way too loose. We put two rounds of wedge in it on that stop, but it wasn't enough to tighten it up."

Mike Skinner, No. 31 Lowe's Chevrolet Monte Carlo: "We got caught in that oil, big time. We couldn't see. We knew it was early in the race so we slowed down and we just tried to hang on until we came in and pitted. We pitted fairly early with the others and I couldn't see at all. It took me a long time to get in the pits because I just couldn't see at all and they had to talk me down into the pits. Our Chevy got awful loose today. We were fortunate to be in this race, and now we know what not to run. So now we know what not to run in the 125. Maybe we can make the car drive a little better in that and then we'll get in even better for the500. We were much better at the start of the race. We wasn't going to show our hand. I planned on staying in the back or in the middle, and when it came down to 10 to go, if we had anything, we were going to try to get in the top five with five to go, and we were going to try to shake up the apple tree with three or four to go, or two to go, or whatever I could do. I had my own personal strategy and I told everybody else I was going for it. And I lied to all of them. I thought I had a good idea, but as it worked out our car just got extremely loose. And we wasn't the only ill-handling car manufacturer either. I think the Dodge and a couple of Fords was loose too. So we've all got a little bit to learn. We're going to change the set-up on the thing and change the spring package in the front and see if we can't help it."

Mike Helton, president of NASCAR, comments regarding the No. 25 car and the disallowance of its qualifying time for the Daytona 500: "Typically on Sunday, when something goes wrong, we can go back on Monday morning and focus in on it. Well, yesterday's situation, we felt like it was necessary to immediately react to the qualifying time which we did by disallowing it. The balance of any penalty that will come of that, we will sort by tomorrow in a timely manner. We're running out of time today."

Chevrolet Racing

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Dale Earnhardt , Dale Earnhardt Jr. , Jeff Gordon , Terry Labonte , Steve Park , Mike Skinner , Joe Nemechek , Mike Helton