KURT BUSCH (No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger) HOW WAS YOUR CAR IN PRACTICE TODAY? "This was an interesting practi ce session today. We unloaded the Miller Lite Dodge on the loose side. We 've got the car turning well. We just have to make sure...
KURT BUSCH (No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger)
HOW WAS YOUR CAR IN PRACTICE TODAY? "This was an interesting practi ce session today. We unloaded the Miller Lite Dodge on the loose side. We 've got the car turning well. We just have to make sure that we don 't slide the rear end too much coming off the corner. When the trac k rubber's in, it's a lot tougher to get the car to turn. W e'll see how it shakes out. The weather conditions are going to con tinue to improve. It's going to get cooler tomorrow and even cooler on Sunday. We're right in the mix for qualifying. It was the tigh test group of cars that I've seen in a long time for qualifying prac tice. A quick time was a 23.20 (seconds) and I rolled a 23.29 and was 15th. That's nine-hundredths of a second with 15 cars in that group. It 's pretty close."
WERE YOU SHOCKED WHEN YOU HEARD THE PENALTY TO THE 33 TEAM? "I wasn 't shocked of the penalty as far as the crew chief being suspended a nd the 150 points. NASCAR set that tone right out of the box. What's happened here is that somehow the car made it through initial inspectio n back at the (NASCADR) R & D Center, and then made it though inspection at the race track on Friday morning. It made it though again on Sunday morning . And then, when it gets back to the R&D Center on Tuesday night or Wednesd ay morning, it has an issue. Was it from the wrecker pushing it back to vic tory lane? No. I love Richard Childress to death; they're a great group of guys. They deserve to win when they have good cars. It's really odd on how NASCAR has put them in this position to where a car can pa ss tech and then shows up later on and doesn't pass tech. For the w hole garage area, everyone is pushing the envelope; everybody is on the edge . This is the Chase. This is NASCAR. This is what it is in the final 10 w eeks. He said, she said, we can speculate. One of the scenarios that I loo ked at was OK, they had that car at Richmond that was questionable and if he would have been docked at Richmond 150 points, Ryan Newman would be in the Chase and not Clint Bowyer. If I was Tony Stewart, I'd be raising h ell. You can look at it a lot of different ways. It's tough for me to call anybody a cheater. Everybody is racing, pushing the envelope. Tho se guys won the race and it was found to be not true."
DO YOU AGREE WITH DENNY HAMLIN THAT THIS WAS GOING ON FOR MONTHS WITH THE 33 TEAM? "I don't agree with that. I've seen the tur naround with the RCR cars with six races to go last year. I was like, =E2 =80=98Man, those guys are going to be tough next year.' They didn 't put any car in the Chase in 2009 and here they are with three tea ms ready to win a championship. They've done a great job turning th eir program around. We can't say that they've done it for m onths, they've been strong since last September."
Page 2 =E2=80" Kurt Busch Open Interview =E2=80" Dover 2
ARE YOU SURPRISED AT HOW AGGRESSIVE THE CHASE DRIVERS WERE LAST WEEKEND AT L OUDON? "It was an amazing race with all the Chase drivers running e ach other the way that they were and acting as if they needed every five, fo ur or three points as far as positions go. Dover, you have to race the race track more here. This is a little bit of a Darlington mentality. That=E2 =80=99s where I need to go back to race the race track, don't worry about other Chase guys. If we finish seventh and there are a few Chasers ah ead of us, hey, we've got eight more after that."
WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS ON TWEAKING THE CHASE FORMAT? "If I could wa ve my magic wand, the only thing that I think about is the 12 chaser=E2=80 =99s need a different point system. Whether you're the first Chase guy and get 12 points, whether you're the last Chase guy and get one (point), that could be a scenario. One bright idea that I has last week, s ince we had to go out first in qualifying, is maybe we should bulk the Chase guys together in qualifying. All of us should go out first and have the re st of the top 35 and then the go-or-go-homers at the end."
SHOULD TEAMS BE WORRIED WHO PUSH THEIR CAR SETUP RIGHT TO THE EDGE? =E2=80 =9CIt's really a tough scenario and tough to give you a definitive a nswer. I would say that at Penske Racing and what Roger's (Penske) philosophy is that we stay within the rules. We need to skirt the grey area . We need to be very genuine and put our best effort forth and come across the best that we can for our sponsors each and every day the legal way.=E2 =80=9D
DO YOU HAVE TO BE AWARE WHO YOU RACE AROUND ON SUNDAY? "You have yo ur list all the time with guys that you can race with and guys that are heat ed with you. You always have to know where you are on the race track and wh o's around you. It's like Jeff Burton and I talked and he s aid, 'Man, did I pinch you down last week?' I was like, 'Yeah you did'. But I expected that hard racing. This is t he Chase. This is where positions matter. He was appreciative of how I sai d that I expected to be raced hard. (Jeff) Burton did say that. He said th at he normally wouldn't race somebody that hard. It gets back to 20 05 when I was a Roush team guy and had (Matt) Kenseth leading the race and h e wouldn't give me the five bonus points for leading a lap. It=E2 =80=99s cut throat. We're all out there racing hard and you have to know who's around you."
HAVE YOU GUYS BEEN ABLE TO IDENTIFY WHY THE 2 CAR HAS STRUGGLED AT KANSAS? "I can't figure it out. I have two tracks that I don't have a top five finish; Chicagoland is one of them and Kansas is the ot her. I can blame Chicago on too many Cubs' games (laughter). I don 't know what it is about Kansas. The year that I won the championsh ip, I finished sixth. It's a flat mile-and-a-half that reminds me o f Las Vegas when it was built and flat. It's just tough combination when you go to tracks just once a year. You feel like you play catch-up mo st of the weekend and if you unload fast, you're tough to chase down ."
WITH KANSAS GETTING TWO RACES NEXT YEAR, DO YOU THINK THAT WILL HELP YOU? "That should help us. We're going to settle in and we=E2 =80=99re going there knowing that it's the home for Sprint. You can 't shy away from a tougher challenge. That's where this gro up on this 2 car has always put up the best fight that they can. We know th at we're up against a tough race track and we'll give it our best effort."
-source: dodge motorsports