After qualifying third for Sunday's Carolina Dodge Dealers 400, Ryan Newman, driver of the No. 12 ALLTEL Taurus, hit the wall in the final minutes of NASCAR Winston Cup Happy Hour and will have to go to a backup car. As a result, Newman will drop...
After qualifying third for Sunday's Carolina Dodge Dealers 400, Ryan Newman, driver of the No. 12 ALLTEL Taurus, hit the wall in the final minutes of NASCAR Winston Cup Happy Hour and will have to go to a backup car. As a result, Newman will drop to the rear of the field and start 43rd.
RYAN NEWMAN --12-- ALLTEL Taurus
WHAT HAPPENED? "The car had been loose. When I stopped on the backstretch, the tire had not hit the body on the left side, but there was a hole in the left-rear tire so I don't know if I had a left-rear tire going down or I just the fact I got too loose and couldn't control it. Jeff Burton came up to me afterwards and said I definitely had a loose race car and was amazed I held on to it as long as I did. We've got a really good, brand new backup car to pull out and, hopefully, we can have a good run tomorrow and come from the back. I'm sure it will be interesting at times, but this was a brand new race car and there's no reason why this next one coming out won't be as good. I guess we'll have to see."
THIS WILL BE A NEW EXPERIENCE FOR YOU BECAUSE LAST YEAR YOU STARTED BOTH DARLINGTON BUSCH RACES FROM THE POLE. "Yeah. There's gonna be a lot of patience involved at the start of the race and trying to work up through traffic, but, at the same time, we've got a good pit crew and we'll have good pit stops. Hopefully, things can work to our advantage and we can get up front and once we get up there we can stay up there."
IS THAT THE WORST PART OF THIS, YOU WERE GOING TO START THIRD? "It is disappointing, but we'll have to work through peaks and valleys all season and this is gonna be one of them. It's a shame that it happened the way it did, but you just have to take things for what they are and go on."
WAS IT YOUR LAST LAP OF PRACTICE? "I don't know how close it was to the end of the session, but it was pretty close I know that. It's unfortunate. The guys worked their butt off getting the car prepared and now we've got to bring out a backup car and go from there."
Brett Bodine, driver of the No. 11 Hooters Taurus, is close to signing a long-term deal with the restaurant chain. He spoke about where things stand at the moment and how much money he has lost over the last few years in unpaid sponsorship.