KURT BUSCH --97-- Sharpie/Rubbermaid Taurus (Finished 39th) "Jack Roush said that we might do well if we get the opportunity to have better equipment and once we get better equipment we should start showing our results. It's tough. This is a...
KURT BUSCH --97-- Sharpie/Rubbermaid Taurus (Finished 39th)
"Jack Roush said that we might do well if we get the opportunity to have better equipment and once we get better equipment we should start showing our results. It's tough. This is a carbon-copy of Darlington. We had an awesome race car and I've got to thank the Lord for the Sandhills Region. This is the only type of race track -- this and Darlington -- that are man enough to stand up to these Goodyear tires. You've got to manage 'em. You've got to do what you've got to do to 'em and you've got to play a pit strategy. We had an awesome pit strategy after that yellow went our way, so I feel real bad for the Sharpie/Rubbermaid guys. This was an awesome run for us, we just need better stuff like Jack says. It's nobody's fault today."
WHAT WAS THE FIRE? "The engine just started melting down. It started to squirt water and it was starting to lose water pressure. It's the same problem like we had at Darlington. The alternator went bad there while we were running bad and it's too bad. We had a great run at Martinsville. We could go on and on about how well we've run."
TODD BODINE --66-- Blue Light Special/Kmart Taurus (Finished 41st) -- "The car was junk. We decided we were gonna finish last anyway, so we used it as a test session. We came in and changed things to try and learn something and we did. We couldn't gain anything as far as positions on the track so we decided to park it."
DALE JARRETT --88-- UPS Taurus (Finished 4th)
"A good race car is how you go from 31st to fourth and good pit stops. The guys did a great job in and out all day. We got the car a lot better and had a good car, but we just never could get the track position that we needed. First of all, let's congratulate Joe Nemechek and Andy Petree. As many people know, Andy built the first race car I ever drove, so I'm awfully happy for him and that race team. It was just a good day. We had a good race car. I don't know if we had anything for those guys, but, again, we couldn't get the track position. One time we got put at the tail-end of the lead lap because we made the pit stop under green, so that put us behind and we never could catch up."
DID YOU MAKE MANY ADJUSTMENTS? "We adjusted on it pretty good. I had been loose all day up out of the corner and we finally got it pretty good. The last stop, I thought we could make it a tick better and we put a little bite in it and that actually hurt it in the center, so we hurt it on the last one. We made adjustments just trying to catch those guys."
HOW BADLY WERE YOU HOPING FOR A CAUTION? "Yeah, I would have liked to have seen what we could do. I had no idea how I stacked up against those guys, but you had to figure it was pretty good because I got out and stayed ahead of 'em. Yeah, I would have liked to have seen a caution just to see what we could do."
WERE YOU SHOCKED THERE WASN'T ONE AFTER LAP 177? "Yes and no, but once the tires start going away they start pitting, so they don't get to that point that they're gonna wreck on 'em. You can use the whole race track here, so if somebody gets themselves in trouble, then they've got a lot of room to correct it. Again, a lot of guys weren't staying out there for 50 or 60 laps on their tires, so it wasn't creating any cautions and there wasn't a lot of side-by-side racing."
YOU MUST HAVE HAD CONFIDENCE IN YOUR CAR COMING HERE. "A lot of guys have figured some things out about qualifying and I don't think we've done that, especially here, but I still felt good about our race package. I actually thought we were gonna be a little better than we were at the beginning of the race, but we adjusted on it and made it a lot better. Yeah, I feel good when we come here."
JEFF BURTON --99-- Citgo SUPERGARD Taurus (Finished 18th)
"It was a pretty good points day for us, that's about all I can say. It was such a tough day for us and I don't understand why because we ran so well yesterday. We started out slow, but hte more we worked on it, the better we got and we were able to maintain the speed we needed to get by with a top 20. We just got too far behind early on."
ROBERT PRESSLEY --77-- Jasper Engines Taurus (Finished 13th)
"The fact we started in the rear and never got a chance to get caught up and get on sequence with the leaders just got us way behind, but I'm pretty happy. The guys did a great job. We would have liked to have had a top 10, but we'll keep trying."
YOU WOULD HAVE LIKED A CAUTION I'M SURE. "Yeah, I would have liked to have seen one about 10 laps before that last one came out because then we could have stayed on the lead lap with those cars. When we got a lap down, along with almost everyone else, that put us out."
WERE YOU SURPRISED TO SEE SO FEW CAUTIONS? "No, that's pretty normal here. There aren't usually a lot of wrecks here. You have a lot of them after a restart, but once they got scattered out, I knew we could go awhile without a caution."
RICKY RUDD --28-- Texaco Havoline Taurus (Finished 8th)
"That turned out a lot better than it started. We were about the worst car here at the start and we came to find out we had a tire slowly going down. We made quite a few changes and the car got pretty good. I'm not sure what happened on the pit stops that put us down a lap. I would have liked to seen a caution late in that race. We raced past the leader with six laps to go and finished on the lead lap."
RICKY CRAVEN --32-- Tide Taurus (Finished 12th)
"We didn't have the muscle that I hoped we would have had and, as a result, we sort of suffered through it. I'm proud of the guys. I consider it a bad day and we finished 12th, so you can see how our expectations have changed."
CAN YOU EXPLAIN WHAT HAPPENED ON THE PIT STOP AND THE CAUTION? "We pitted at the same time the caution came out, so we had to shoot through the pit and that cost us a lap. I'd sure like to have that lap back, but what can you do."
WHAT WERE YOUR THOUGHTS AT THAT MOMENT, WHICH ENDED WITH YOU RUNNING OVER THE AIR HOSE? "We didn't lose a lap because we ran over the hose, we lost a lap because we pitted, so essentially that didn't matter. The only thing that matters is the fact that nobody got hurt, which is real important. I know a few guys got banged around in there and I'm just thankful they didn't get hurt."
MATT KENSETH --17-- DEWALT Power Tools Taurus (Finished 10th)
"To finish in the top 10 here is like winning for this DEWALT crew. We were awesome early, then pitted too early and got a lap down on that caution. We really had some loose tires after that. We made a few adjustments, but going green the rest of the way we got behind. That's our third straight top-10 finish, so that's pretty cool."
ROBBIE REISER, Crew Chief --17-- DEWALT Power Tools Taurus (Finished 10th)
"To win the pit stop contest was a big deal for our guys and this is our third top-10 in a row. The way our season had been going this year, this shows some momentum going to the end and that's a plus for us. I thought we had a better car than a 10th-place car because we worked our way to the front, but I wasn't smart enough there on the caution. We had already pitted and lost that lap and that pretty much hurt our day. All in all, it wasn't too bad."
YOU COULD HAVE USED A COUPLE MORE CAUTIONS? "Yeah, we needed a caution. We were on the lead lap, but the problem was that we had to start on the tail-end of the lead lap after that one caution and that made it tough. We had to struggle all day just to try to keep him on the lead lap, but the guys should be happy with 10th place because we haven't run that well here. On the other hand, when you have a car that's capable of being in the top five, you get a little mad with a top 10."
ELLIOTT SADLER --21-- Motorcraft Taurus (Finished 23rd)
ONCE YOU HIT THE WALL THE CAR NEVER SEEMED THE SAME. "Yeah, I probably knocked the toe-in out or something and made the car too tight. We had a pretty good car during the middle of the race. I messed up one time on pit road and got in too hot and I think the guys had one bad pit stop too, so that cost us a lot under green-flag racing and we never could make it back up. I'm happy with how the car ran, I'm just not pleased with the finish. We'll have to just keep working on it and get it ready to be a little bit better when we come back here in February."