ROBBIE LOOMIS (Director of Racing, Petty Enterprises) DO TEAMS WORRY ABOUT THE PIT CREW ON A HOT DAY? "Being an ex crew chief I used to always worry more about the crew than the driver. Nowadays we have a physical training that works on them.
ROBBIE LOOMIS (Director of Racing, Petty Enterprises)
DO TEAMS WORRY ABOUT THE PIT CREW ON A HOT DAY? "Being an ex crew chief I used to always worry more about the crew than the driver. Nowadays we have a physical training that works on them. They try to eat better on race day. We've even gotten to where we bring food to help the guys out. It's always a concern. The biggest thing is to keep them hydrated and keep them in the shade as much as we can. I think everybody is a lot more aware nowadays and tries to be more conscious of the heat. When they start out tomorrow morning they'll start out a lot cooler and fresher."
TALK ABOUT WHEN THE CREWS ARRIVE. "The pit crews come in on Saturday. They get here at noon on Saturday so they have plenty of time to rest. The hard part is tomorrow is such a long day. You come here at ten in the morning with 105 to 108 degree heat. It's exhausting on the guys; most of the time we encourage them to stay in the air conditioning to stay as cool as they can. Usually I am trying to run them out of the truck, but this is the one track, as hot as it is, I like them to stay as cool as they can."
IN YOUR DAYS AS A CREWMEMBER DOES ONE HOT DAY STAND OUT? "I don't know about hot, but I think Darlington. Darlington has probably been the hottest race; the one you had to prepare for the most. Also, the racetrack just eats tires up and by the end of the day it was nothing to put 13 sets of tires on the car throughout a day at Darlington. Specially, the Southern 500, that thing use to be hot as can be now California will probably go down in history as the hottest track I've ever been too, temperature-wise.
"Here at this race it will be a little bit easier race. However, when it is so hot like it is, you still have to put those tires on."
JUAN PABLO MONTOYA (No. 42 WRIGLEY'S BIG RED DODGE CHARGER)
ARE YOU HAPPY WITH THE CAR? "We were like good, bad. To tell you the truth, it feels terrible but I guess everybody else's does because it doesn't look that bad in the lap times. I don't think we've got a winning car. I think there's a lot of things that we tried. We tried a lot of things, big things. When you are good, you just try to fine-tune it and we are just trying to find the point to start fine-tuning it. We done a lot of improvements and tomorrow, if everything falls into place great it'd be a top-10 I think."
THIS RACE IS LIKE THE COCA-COLA 600 WHERE YOU START IN THE DAYTIME AND FINISH AT NIGHT. HOW DO YOU KEEP UP WITH THE RACETRACK? "It's hard because for us it was maybe a little looser when it was really hot and slick. You want to be a little conservative. I'd rather run a little tight to start with but at the same time you don't want to be too tight because then you go a lap down too early. It's always a compromise."
DAVID STREMME, YOUR TEAMMATE, WAS FIFTH AFTER THIS PRACTICE. THAT MUST BE ENCOURAGING. "I think the 41 (Reed Sorenson) may have a little bit better racecar than the 40 (Stremme). We'll see."
COMMENT ON THE GLARE IN TURN 3. "I'm pretty comfortable in three. I'm struggling more in Turn 1 that Turn 3."
-credit: dodge motorsports