KASEY KAHNE (No. 9 Dodge Dealers/UAW Dodge Charger) "The late cautions really hurt us. Our car didn't take off that well on restarts, so the last caution cost us a couple of positions at the finish. Our No. 9 Dodge Charger was definitely a ...
KASEY KAHNE (No. 9 Dodge Dealers/UAW Dodge Charger)
"The late cautions really hurt us. Our car didn't take off that well on restarts, so the last caution cost us a couple of positions at the finish. Our No. 9 Dodge Charger was definitely a top-five car and was capable of taking the win. We had great pit stops and Kenny (Francis, team director) and the crew kept up with the changing track conditions. We just had a problem with restarts in traffic and needed a few laps under green to get going. It would have been nice to finish the season with a win, but we won the pole, led the most laps and had a top-five finish. It's been a great season for our team and Evernham Motorsports."
RYAN NEWMAN (No. 12 Alltel Dodge Charger)
MONTOYA SAID HE DID NOT RUN INTO THE BACK OF YOU. IS THAT WHAT SPUN YOU OUT EARLIER IN THE RACE? "He never touched me other than when we were both going for the same real estate. His bumper went across my nose and that spun him right around. What happened off turn four was totally my fault. I lost the car. I got into him and we got door to door and that spun me around. Down here, it was anybody but racing's fault in my opinion. His car came across the nose of mine. I felt bad for the situation because, obviously, it looked like I was retaliating, but that's not the case. That's what we just talked about."
IF NASCAR THOUGHT YOU WERE RETALIATING, WOULDN'T YOU HAVE GOTTEN A PENALTY DURING THE RACE? "That's the way it usually works. That's the way it worked in Martinsville. I felt for Juan. I felt bad for the situation and him catching on fire and everything. I did not crash him on purpose and we'll go on."
WHY WERE YOU CALLED INTO THE NASCAR TRAILER? "There was direct conversation about what happened and to make sure it wasn't intentional."
ELLIOTT SADLER (No. 19 Dodge Dealers/UAW Dodge Charger)
"We had some good calls on pit strategy which got us the track position we needed .At the same time, Josh (Browne, team director) and the team kept making the right adjustments on the car to free it up. Once we got out front, we had the car handling the best it had all night. I thought we were going to finish the season with a good top-five finish, but once again we had mechanical problems which put us out of the race. It's disappointing, but we've got a little time to get things sorted out and be ready when we head to Daytona for the start of the 2007 season."
JUAN PABLO MONTOYA (No. 30 Texaco/Havoline Dodge Charger)
"It's a shame. The Texaco/Havoline Dodge was a great car today. Everybody worked so hard, and it was a great racecar. I screwed up once. I was trying to make up time at the end and clipped the wall and cut really tight. The guys fixed it.
"That's just one of those things. When he spun, we didn't even touch. He came up to me and if that's what he wanted to do, I don't care. I'm not racing for points or anything here. I think it was fine today. It was same as the Busch, no big deal. The crew we had did a fantastic job, and it was great.
"I did accomplish what I was looking for. I got experience and got to know the guys and it was good.
"I really don't know what happened. I think the 12 got me in the back, but I'm not sure which car got me. I don't care. The Texaco/Havoline Dodge today worked really well. Everybody at Chip Ganassi with Felix Sabates did an awesome job for me. It's going to be hard. I knew when I signed with Chip that it wasn't going to be easy. I'm racing against great drivers, and it was awesome racing against them today. I think it's been getting better and better race by race."
CASEY MEARS (No. 42 Texaco/Havoline Dodge Charger)
"It's disappointing because we didn't run as well as we thought we were going to run here. It started coming to life a little bit when the sun went down and got a little bit of grip in the track. It looked like we were going forward and were going to have a halfway decent finish to end the year. Everybody has worked real hard. I guess you don't always get the fairytale story, but it would have been nice to finish and go out on a high note. These guys all worked hard, and it's been a lot of fun over here. I don't think we've had a motor blow up in the last two years. The engine shop does a great job. We just had a little bad luck this weekend."
DAVID STREMME (No. 40 Coors Light Dodge Charger)
"We took two tires on the last stop and it might have hurt us a little bit on some of the restarts, but everybody did a good job. This is a brand new car and it was a pretty good way to end the year. I wish we could have got a top 10, but we fell just a little bit short. I'm real proud of my guys. When we started the weekend out we said this is the beginning of our year. We showed pretty good. This team has come around a whole lot. I'm really proud of all the guys."
SCOTT RIGGS (No. 10 Valvoline/Stanley Tools Dodge Charger)
"It was a pretty good run. It wasn't a good enough finish. I'm glad we've got some time to recharge our batteries and start all over with the points and all, but at the same time I want to keep going because it seems like we're getting better and better as a team and running better every week and communicating better and making our cars better. I hope we can look back and reflect on all this and be a better prepared team for next year.
"It was a successful year considering where I came from the last two years. For a typical Evernham team, I think we were average. We weren't really acceptable to be an Evernham team and have all the resources we've got, but to be a new group of guys I think we were OK with it.
"We came from 13th to seventh at the end. We took four tires and everybody else took two. It was a crapshoot. I think if it had gone green we would have been a lot better off. It was OK for us. I think we would have finished between fourth and sixth and we ended up seventh, so that was OK."
BOBBY LABONTE (No. 43 Chex Party Mix Dodge Charger)
"The 2 car stopped somehow or anything. I don't know what happened to him. Our car was really loose. We were just hanging on, and I think we could have made it better. I was following the 66 car of Jeff Green, and we came off turn two. Something happened to the 2 car because he swerved really fast to miss him. I wanted to miss him also, but I just didn't miss him. That's not the way we wanted to end the season. It's kinda frustrating. I feel like a lot of good things are going to happen to this team next season. We just didn't have long enough today to find out how we were going to be today. We'll hang out in the off season and get ready for next year."
KURT BUSCH (No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger)
"There in the first crash the right front just blew and sent me straight into the wall. I felt sorry for Bobby Labonte because he had nowhere to go. They thought it was fixed and sent me back out there. Evidently there was still something rubbing and we popped another right front. That was a really hard shot. It could have been a really bad deal, happening there right in front of the leaders."
NOTE: After experiencing a severe headache, Busch later went to the infield medical center where he was checked out and released.
-credit: dodge motorsports