RYAN NEWMAN (No. 12 ALLTEL Dodge Intrepid) NOTE: Newman captured his circuit-leading sixth pole of the season and 13th of his career. He won seven poles in 2002, his Raybestos Rookie of the Year season, and captured the Bud Pole Award in the ...
RYAN NEWMAN (No. 12 ALLTEL Dodge Intrepid)
NOTE: Newman captured his circuit-leading sixth pole of the season and 13th of his career. He won seven poles in 2002, his Raybestos Rookie of the Year season, and captured the Bud Pole Award in the process.
"The guys did a great job with the car. We were struggling through two hours of practice, and we finally got a decent lap in. It wasn't a good time lap, but it was a good run and I really enjoy this racetrack. I've got a good team, and I've been able to keep it out of the fence here. That's a pretty good combination."
"The guys did an awesome job. We weren't the greatest when we unloaded. The team did an awesome job to make the car better and better. We cut a good enough lap to beat Jimmie (Johnson). He had a good car, too. We just look forward to the Southern 500. It's a big race and neat to be on the pole for the last one. It's definitely special. I want to thank Buddy Baker for all the things he's done to help me, especially get around this place. It's definitely an historical place, and I had some legendary help with our team."
JEREMY MAYFIELD (No. 19 Dodge Dealers/UAW Dodge Intrepid)
"We've had a great car all day. It was going to be really fast. We were going for it. It's the last Mountain Dew Southern 500 here on Labor Day. We wanted to get the pole for 'em. We were going hard and trying hard and came off turn two and brushed the wall a little bit. I think we'll be all right. We've got to go to a backup now."
CHRISTIAN FITTIPALDI (No. 43 Cheerios Dodge Intrepid)
"This morning the car was pretty loose, especially in one and two. We tested here about two weeks ago, but this is my first trip here to race. We made the car better the whole practice session and made a big change for qualifying. That made a big difference. I went about three tenths quicker, so I'm pretty happy. The fact that I haven't been involved a long time with NASCAR, it's hard for me to realize, but from what people tell me this is definitely a great place. On Sunday, I guess I'm supposed to race the track and not the other cars."
JIMMY SPENCER (No. 7 Sirius Satellite Radio Dodge Intrepid)
"We got in the corner and got a little loose. We put the power back to it and headed back up the track. It was a little hot and slick, and we got loose. It's pretty special (recent fan support). I can't believe how supportive they are of the incident that happened in the past. All in all, I can't thank them enough for their support. We're not worried about that now. We're at Darlington. We had a really good car. We're going to a backup now. We tore it all to pieces. We made a mistake."
JAMIE McMURRAY (No. 42 Havoline Dodge Intrepid)
"That's not bad. It could have been better, but starting 17th at Darlington isn't that bad. I think our Havoline Dodge will be good in race trim. We just haven't figured out the qualifying stuff yet. The race Sunday is very long, and we'll be fine. We survived Bristol and got a good finish, so hopefully we can do that again this week."
STERLING MARLIN (No. 40 Coors Light Dodge Intrepid)
"We definitely did much better at qualifying today than we have been doing the last few weeks. The Coors Light Dodge crew has been working really hard today in the hot sun to get the car where it needed to be. I am sad this is the last Southern 500 on Labor Day Weekend, but I feel good about my chances of winning on Sunday."
CASEY MEARS (No. 41 Target Dodge Intrepid)
"Well, if I didn't tag the wall, we could have had a lot better starting position. The car just got away from me in turn two for a minute, but we pulled off a pretty good starting spot (21st) for almost wrecking."