Dodge Racing Darlington II race notes

STACY COMPTON (No. 92 Kodiak Dodge Intrepid R/T) "There's 42 cars out there you can race with and one you can't. That's the third time the 8 car hit me today. He finally accomplished what he was trying to do and took me out. It's the best...

STACY COMPTON (No. 92 Kodiak Dodge Intrepid R/T)
"There's 42 cars out there you can race with and one you can't. That's the third time the 8 car hit me today. He finally accomplished what he was trying to do and took me out. It's the best car I've had all year. I had a great run going, but it wasn't meant to be. It just wasn't our day. I don't know what his (Dale Earnhardt Jr.) problem is. It's been give and take with 42 other cars out there all day. He almost wrecked me three different times, and he finally got me. Maybe he needs to raise his seat up. Apparently, he can't see over the hood. We had a top 10 car. We were running 15th or 20th and capable of running with the leaders all day."

LARRY McREYNOLDS (Advisor No. 44 Georgia Pacific Dodge Intrepid R/T)
"Buckshot has been fighting the flu all weekend. If finally just got to him. How many drivers in this garage area are even close to the same size? I hate it Jason (Leffler) had problems, but if it hadn't been for him we would have probably had to park it. The seat is still not right for Jason. We had to adjust the steering column and everything else. Nobody is smaller than Buckshot. Jason is bigger around, and we had to adjust things for him."

JASON LEFFLER (No. 01 Cingular Wireless Dodge Intrepid R/T)
"It looks like we knocked a hole in the radiator. I got in that deal in the backstretch with Michael Waltrip and Ron Hornaday. I got into the rear end of Hornaday, and that's what knocked the hole in the radiator. I learned you've got to watch out for those cautions."

WARD BURTON (No. 22 Caterpillar Dodge Intrepid R/T)
"I knew I dent it up pretty good in qualifying, but these guys never gave up. They worked on it all Friday afternoon and started on it again Saturday morning at 8 o'clock. Saturday during practice the car felt pretty good. We adjusted on it and Darlington is just a compromise anyway. We're real fortunate. Tommy Baldwin and all the guys compromised best for me. I don't know if I'm the best driver, but we damn sure had the best race car today. You can pace yourself a little bit here, but the car manages the tires more than the driver. You've got to hustle the cars around this track. Those last three sets of tires today, my car did the best tire management of any car out there, and that's why we won the race. We've had an up and down season, but I told Tommy we were going to have a shot at winning today. I told him we were going to go for it, but we weren't going to do anything stupid to win. All those guys up front are friends of mine. They drive me with respect and I was going to do the same for them. It was important to get around Bobby. Bobby is a good, smart racer. He's got a good team. I was just a little bit better on the long runs and he knew it. The time will come around where I know it, and I'll give a little bit for him. I'm just happy to be a part of this Southern 500 tradition. I really haven't had time to think about it, but I guess it was a pretty good weekend for the Burton Brothers. Jeff won yesterday, and I'm a little surprised he isn't in here now with it raining like it is."

RAY EVERNHAM (Car owner Evernham Motorsports Dodge Intrepid R/Ts)
"Bill Elliott did a great job. It just proves that Bill Elliott has got a lot of racing left in him. It'd sure be nice to get him to win a race. If Mike Ford and the guys keep doing the job they're doing we'll get him there. That's another top five for Evernham Motorsports, and I'm just ecstatic. Those guys never give up. They get better and better all day long. They fight hard. Bill gives 100 percent, and that's what it takes to win races. I couldn't be more proud of that group. Bill was top 10 most of the day. Mike made a good call and good adjustments to come in and take on the tires. Then he had a shot at a top five. Those guys fight hard. They're survivors, and that's what it takes. I'm glad a Dodge won again. I wish our Dodges could win, but as long as a Dodge is winning, I feel like we're part of that."

DAVE BLANEY (No. 93 Amoco Ultimate Dodge Intrepid R/T)
"They all got bottled up in four and I had a good run going. I just went into one too hot and slid up into Dale Jr. What are you going to do? Lift? We had better tires than they did and were just trying to take advantage of it and just slid into him. We had two flat right fronts today and got back on the lead lap both times. We had a fast car, but it was a tough day. That was awesome for Ward. I was glad to see him win it. We had a fast car all day long. I had a stop and go penalty for speeding. Tough day. I got into Dale Jr. and I apologized to him. That's racing in the last couple of laps."

STERLING MARLIN (No. 40 Coors Light Dodge Intrepid R/T)
"It looks to me like NASCAR would look at the equipment that gets torn up for throwing cautions. I don't know if it was for debris or what. Look over the years at the equipment that's got torn up because they throw a caution and want to have a wild finish. Everybody runs all over everybody. They started wrecking in turn one and Benson and Hamilton got together. Harvick never let up. He pushed me into Hamilton. I kind of missed everybody else, and then Dale Jr. came off and I couldn't miss him. I didn't know he was there. I couldn't see for the smoke. Look at road course races. Everybody gets their stuff torn up there. Finish the race under caution and don't stop us with three to go. It's ridiculous. That's about the third or fourth time it's got me. I'm just going to start slamming and bamming. There's nothing to lose. There's supposed to be some give and take, but there ain't no take to it. They just run over each other. The car's tore up, so we'll just go on with it. It's costing us and the owners. We had a top five car today. We just got too tight. We were loose early. We adjusted and got too tight. We got good and then it was like the track changed again. We got too tight again. Too bad the rain didn't come about 30 minutes sooner. Nothing we can do about it now. We'll just go to the house."

JASON LEFFLER (No. 01 Cingular Dodge Intrepid R/T)
"They asked me to drive the 44 because I guess Buckshot and me are about the same size. It would have been hard for them to get anybody else. Andy Graves let me do it, and it was good because I got a lot of laps and experience. Buckshot had the flu."

-dodge motorsports

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Dale Earnhardt Jr. , Bill Elliott , Michael Waltrip , Ron Hornaday Jr. , Tommy Baldwin