Dale Jarrett Talks about Daytona Happy Hour Accident

Dale Jarrett, driver of the No. 88 Quality Care Service/Ford Credit Taurus, was involved in an accident during Happy Hour. He spoke about the incident and plans to repair the damage. DALE JARRETT --88-- Quality Care Service/Ford Credit...

Dale Jarrett, driver of the No. 88 Quality Care Service/Ford Credit Taurus, was involved in an accident during Happy Hour. He spoke about the incident and plans to repair the damage.

DALE JARRETT --88-- Quality Care Service/Ford Credit Taurus "Somebody got off on the apron in front and Sterling and the guys right in front of me checked up and I checked up. I guess Gordon had a run and he tried to avoid me, but he caught me in the right rear and spun me down off the track and then I went back up the track. The worst damage was done when I came back off the track the last time. I was trying to keep it off the wall and when I let off the brake finally it shot down the track and (Bill) Elliott clipped the left-front of it. Then I came off the track and bent it up."

QUITE A SAVE THOUGH? "I guess if I was smart I wouldn't have been in there to start with. We were about ready to go, we were just trying one last thing and I wanted to see what it was gonna do behind cars so I could make sure that's what I was looking for."

WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO NOW? "Work like the devil to fix it."

IS THERE ANY SUSPENSION DAMAGE? "There doesn't appear to be any suspension damage, everything checks out. The front end checks out to what it was and there doesn't seem to be anything there to give us any reason to think that we would need to pull the backup off. We were concerned about being able to fix all the body because that is critical. That's what makes that car fast, but our guys we're getting ready to load them on an airplane and get them here and see what time NASCAR will let us in to start working on it in the morning. We'll probably be rolling to the line as they're doing the national anthem tomorrow, but it'll be ready to go."

ANY MOTOR DAMAGE? "No, everything is fine there...normal rpms and the motor never quit running or anything so it didn't run backwards. Everything is fine there."

DOES IT HURT YOUR CONFIDENCE? "No, it's the same way. We just go at it as soon as we get started."

DID ANYONE DO ANYTHING WRONG? "I don't know. No. I mean, things are gonna happen. Just like I said, somebody up there in front -- a green car -- got down off the apron and that just started everybody checking up. It's hard to do. You're running that fast and you just can't stop."

THIS WAS WHAT YOU WERE TALKING ABOUT EARLIER TODAY ABOUT STAYING OUT OF TROUBLE. "That's why I hope I can stay out front and stay there. It makes it a lot easier if you don't have to look in front of you and see somebody checking up there. That's the kind of thing that happens when you're running in the packs. You just hope that it doesn't, but we've got to overcome it now."

DID YOU HIT ANYBODY? "I didn't hit anybody in front. The only time I hit anything was coming down off of the banking right at the end. As Bill Elliott came by on the inside I just clipped the right rear of his car and it caught the left front of my car."

DO YOU FEEL LIKE YOU DODGED A BULLET? "Yeah. I mean, when it happened and I started back up the track I thought I was going head-on into the wall. Maybe that was our bad luck for the week. We haven't had much, so."

MIKE SKINNER SAID HE COULDN'T BELIEVE YOU SAVED IT? "Yeah, I couldn't either. Somebody jumped in there with me right quick. It wasn't anything I did. I was praying, so I guess that works."

THE CREW WILL COME IN EARLY TOMORROW? "We'll have to come in early, but that's up to Todd to do what he can. NASCAR works with everybody as much as they can to make it all work."

HOW WILL THE DAMAGE AFFECT THE CAR? "You just don't know. We can put it back close to what we think, but we make minor changes in the wind tunnel and it makes a big difference, so there's just no way of knowing when we get it back if it's gonna be right until we take off and see what happens with the car."

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Bill Elliott , Dale Jarrett