Chicagoland: Newman post-qualifying interview

RYAN NEWMAN (No. 12 Mobil 1/Alltel Dodge Charger) -- Second-place qualifying interview "I told Matt (crew chief Borland) before practice even started that we needed about a tenth on the field to have a shot for the pole because of our qualifying...

RYAN NEWMAN (No. 12 Mobil 1/Alltel Dodge Charger) -- Second-place qualifying interview

"I told Matt (crew chief Borland) before practice even started that we needed about a tenth on the field to have a shot for the pole because of our qualifying draw. He said two tenths and it turned out to be less than a hundredth of a second. It was a great run. I felt it was going to be a top five run after that run, not knowing if the track was going to pick up a lot or not. I think it definitely picked up a lot of speed, but Jimmie had a great lap. I'm taking nothing away from him and his team. It's going to be a good place to start. We get a good pit selection and we'll just keep doing our best."

HOW WOULD YOU ADJUST STARTING IN THE BACK OF THE PACK?

"I don't know. I can't answer your question. I'm not in that situation."

DID YOU HAVE A TIRE ISSUE IN PRACTICE?

"We had a tire go down coming off turn four on the second lap of a qualifying attempt and I just stopped down in turn one to basically not tear up the car. When a tire blows like that you usually can't tell what caused it. I know NASCAR said they found a piece of metal on the racetrack. I don't know if that's something that caused it or not. I think there's always concern, knowing this is the same tire we ran at Michigan. There was concern there. We have concern at every track we go to with the tires, considering that's the only thing that touches the racetrack. We do (have concern about tires). More than usual? Maybe just a little bit."

WHAT'S THE SECRET TO YOUR SUCCESS AT CHICAGOLAND?

"It takes a combination of everything. You've got to have a fast racecar. The driver's got to be able to get around the racetrack. For the last three years or whatever it is it's been here it's been pretty much a one-groove racetrack. I didn't get an opportunity to race much last year because we cut a tire and crashed early in the race. It's usually a game of track position and a fast racecar. If you can have good pit stops you can stay up front and have a good shot of keeping everybody else behind you. The track is getting better and better as it ages and you'll see two or three maybe even more grooves potentially depending on what the tire wear is like with this new tire for the race on Saturday and Sunday."

-dodgemotorsports

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Series NASCAR Cup