Chicagoland: GM teams qualifying notes, quotes

Jamie McMurray on the Pole at Chicagoland; Team Chevy Drivers Claim Three of Top-Five and Five of Top-10 Starting Positions Joliet, IL - Jamie McMurray, No. 1 McDonald's Chevrolet, captured the pole for Saturday's 400 at Chicagoland...

Jamie McMurray on the Pole at Chicagoland; Team Chevy Drivers Claim Three of Top-Five and Five of Top-10 Starting Positions

Joliet, IL - Jamie McMurray, No. 1 McDonald's Chevrolet, captured the pole for Saturday's 400 at Chicagoland Speedway. It is his third pole of the 2010 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season and the sixth of his career.

Team Chevy drivers claimed three of the top-five and five of the top-10 starting positions for the 43-car field.

Jimmie Johnson put the No. 48 Lowe's Chevrolet on the outside of the front row with Tony Stewart scoring the third starting spot in the No. 14 Office Depot/Old Spice Chevrolet.

Jeff Gordon will start the No. 24 DuPont Chevrolet in sixth place and Juan Pablo Montoya, No. 42 Target Chevrolet, qualified in 10th position.

A total of 15 Chevrolet drivers will take the green flag Saturday night for the 267-lap/400.5-mile race.

Greg Biffle (Ford) and Sam Hornish (Dodge) complete the top-five starters.



TALK ABOUT YOUR LAP: "We're pretty good in qualifying trim. We went very early. This Target Chevy has been pretty good. In race trim we were decent, in qualifying trim, we were really really good. I think if had drawn a little bit later, it would have helped."

WHAT IS THE PRESSURE FOR YOU GUYS TO GET IN THE CHASE? "With the luck we have, probably none. (SMILES) Let's be realistic here. We have the speed, we're a lot faster than we were last so easily we should have been in the Chase but we've been involved in wrecks and all kinds of things have gone wrong. But that is ok. As a team we pull together. We win together, we lose together, we crash together. They say 'Yea, we crash together, but you're in the car.' We're good."



TALK ABOUT YOUR LAP: "It was a good lap. It was a good pickup from practice. I thought the guys did a great job with the adjustments. I was just a little bit free in getting back to the gas so that hurt us a little bit. But, all-in-all a good time. I just think we didn't draw a great number so we will get knocked back a little bit, but I think it will be decent."

TALK ABOUT YOUR THOUGHTS ON YOUR 600TH START, THAT MUST BE PRETTY SPECIAL: "It is. Six hundred consecutive starts on top of that. It is something that I am very proud of. Great race cars, great team and I've been healthy all these years to be able to do that. It is something that has contributed greatly to the wins and championships. I never thought I would get to 600. It seems like an awful big number. I don't know where they all came from. Still here, still doing it and having fun. Six hundred races later, that is a great thing."



TALK ABOUT YOUR LAP: "Happy with that. It is a lot of pressure when you are good in practice and then try to repeat when it comes time to qualify. But Bono (Kevin Manion, crew chief) did a really good job. He made the right changes. That is just all the faster we could go. We had a lot of grip and the balance is good."

WHEN YOU GO OUT THIS EARLY IN THE ORDER, DOES THAT MAKE YOU NERVOUS? "It is just a product of the way the draw works. Sometimes you get to go late and sometimes you go early. I'm happy with that. Every single weekend you have to start towards the front, it doesn't seem to matter what track we go to, you need to start toward the front. Certainly with the way we are going to start in the sunlight and then race in to the night time, we really hope our car is setup for night time. It will be nice to start up front and be able to survive until the sun goes down."



FIRST CONGRATULATIONS ON YOUR NEW DAUGHTER: "Was an exciting day for us on Wednesday. Our little girl is here and she is beautiful and my wife is doing great. I can hardly wait to get back home to them tonight to the hospital and see them."

HOW IS YOUR CAR: "We are real happy with race trim and thought we would have a good shot at the pole and came close, just a few hundredths off the time that the No. 1 (Jamie McMurray) ran. Left a little on the table in turn one, the car was a little uncomfortable down there but nailed three and four and had a good lap with this Lowe's Impala."

DID YOU FIND IT DIFFICULT TO FOCUS ON THE CAR WITH EVERYTHING THAT IS GOING ON IN YOUR WORLD WITH THE NEW BABY? "We planned for everything. We didn't expect her to come this early so that was a bit of a surprise. With Chad (Knaus) leading the No. 48 team and all the support at Hendrick, we had everything in line. I feel bad for Aric (Almirola) didn't get a chance to drive the car and I think he is a great talent and hopefully will be picked up by someone. He is doing a great job in the Truck Series but I know he has aspirations to get to the Cup Series. We were just organized top to bottom. Gave me a lot of comfort to enjoy the week and the last few days that I had and also go home tonight and she Channi and the baby and spend time with them. It is just an extremely amazing experience and Wednesday was the best day of my life. It was awesome."

HAVE YOU FIGURED OUT A NAME YET? "No, but we're getting there. We just want to put some thought into it. Being as slow to make a decision as my wife and I are, you should have just watched us try and go to dinner on Tuesday night, it is difficult. There is a lot of pressure that goes with this. We can't make a quick decision, grant it we have only had 10 months to get ready for this. But this is for a lifetime. Women already have these names all planned out but we'll come to a decision soon. Just overwhelmed with joy and so excited and very very surprised about how interested everybody is in what the baby's name is going to be."



DID YOU FIND THE SPEED AND COMFORT YOU WERE LOOKING FOR IN YOUR CAR? "Well, it isn't about comfort for a lap, you are supposed to hold your breath for a lap. Glad I don't have to do that lap again. It was better. We had two hours and 45 minutes of practice and made one qualifying run. Pretty happy with our race car. Darian (Grubb, crew chief) and the guys did an awesome job on this Office Depot Back to School car. It has some pretty cool stuff on it this week. If you go over the edge out there so you just get everything you can get. You run on the ragged edge where tomorrow you aren't going to run on the ragged edge every lap because you have to make the tires not mad for a 50 lap run or however long we've got to go. So you can run it hard for one lap and make the tires mad and it's not a big penalty. But if you tried to race it that way and race it that hard and slide it around like that, 15 laps into the run, you would be sliding backwards through the field. It is a little different deal on Friday versus Saturday.

YOU PICKED UP EXACTLY ONE-HALF OF A SECOND FROM PRACTICE: "I'll take it. It wasn't a pretty lap but it was fast. It gave us a good starting spot for tomorrow night and hopefully get us another top five, maybe a win here."

-source: gm racing

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Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Juan Pablo Montoya