Indianapolis: Post race quotes

JEFF GORDON (No. 24 DuPont Chevrolet): "That's awesome, a great effort. I didn't know what to expect when the green flag fell today. We were really bad yesterday. I was looking for a feel and the team wanted to give to me. They fought hard all...

JEFF GORDON (No. 24 DuPont Chevrolet):

"That's awesome, a great effort. I didn't know what to expect when the green flag fell today. We were really bad yesterday. I was looking for a feel and the team wanted to give to me. They fought hard all weekend long to get me that feel, and we finally came through today in the race. That's when it really counts. I hated that we started so far back, and we fought the way we did this weekend. It was very frustrating. Heck of a test for this race team, but they pulled through with flying colors. I couldn't more proud of them. I had a good car. I just needed track position. I'm worn out because I had a hard-fought day from where we came." (You had a tough weekend, so this has to be satisfying?): "Very satisfying. It's a total team effort. These guys work so hard to bring great race cars, and this car we brought here was a good race car. We just didn't see it all weekend long."

BILL ELLIOTT (No. 9 Dodge Dealers/UAW Dodge):

"It wasn't bad. Our Dodge ran pretty well. We just lost track and couldn't keep up." (This place is very hard. Was it different with the new rules?): "Worse. It was worse than ever."

MATT KENSETH (No. 17 Smirnoff Ice Triple Black/DeWalt Ford):

"It was a really great finish for us. The guys had real good stops. It was a great day. We had a good car and we got a good finish with it, so it feels really good. I thought we had a good car, but then when that first deal worked out when we had to pit when the pits were closed to get gas and stuff. I wasn't sure what was going to happen, but we had a good enough car to go fast. The team did a great job with the car and they made good calls in the pits, and we had a really competitive car all day. It seemed like we came from behind a lot, but our car was really handling good and we could really pass good. They did a good job at working at that really hard yesterday."

STEVE PARK (No. 30 GM America Online Chevrolet):

"It was decent. I was just glad to see Kevin win. We had a top-10 car. We just got screwed up in a lot of traffic. For me it was a good race."

KYLE PETTY (No. 45 Georgia Pacific Dodge):

"I ran 40th. It felt terrible today. We have no motor, no motor, no motor. We have to figure it out. We need to find a motor somewhere."

CASEY MEARS (No. 41 Target Dodge):

"The day was OK. It wasn't the day that I wanted to have in Indianapolis. That is probably one of the worst runs that we have had in a while. We were running so well. We came here, and we were just off. At the end of the day, we brought the car home and got a lot of experience. I am looking forward to coming back here next year."

JEFF BURTON (No. 99 CITGO Ford):

"The tires were wearing so much, and the fenders were burned off of the car today. We had something break or something go wrong. It was just giving us trouble all day."

TERRY LABONTE (No. 5 Kellogg's/got milk? Chevrolet):

"It was kind of one of those chain-reaction deals. He got the back of me and just turned me around. We were actually going to have a pretty good finish. It was just too bad. Joe (Nemechek) said once it happened there was nothing we could do about it. The car was everywhere. We were sitting there, working our way up to the top 10, and then that happened. We lost about 10 spots in that deal. From the week that we had, it ended up to be an OK deal. I just hate when that happens. There were some good spots there, but oh, well, that's just the way it goes."

JEREMY MAYFIELD (No. 19 Dodge Dealers/UAW Dodge):

"We had a bad enough day as it was, just a bad day overall. We keep fighting and just keep digging."

JAMIE McMURRAY (No. 42 Havoline Dodge):

"I tell you what, once I got the lead, I struggled with trying to stay focused, just trying to take all this in. This is an incredible racetrack. Starting so far back, everybody says it's so hard to pass here, but we didn't struggle. Our car was so fast. This is a pretty cool deal. Everybody was racing hard at the end. I'm not really happy with third, but the way the last few weeks went, I'm pretty content." (About racing Robby Gordon at the end): "Yeah, you know, he's a damn menace to society, I think. That guy, he just races so hard." (About competing at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway): "I was pretty intimidated, honestly, coming here. And, the first day of testing, we struggled. But the second day, we learned a lot. It's a cool racetrack, it's hard to race on, and it is hard to pass on. You can't race two wide, but it's a pretty cool place." (About the passes toward the end): "Matt had to shove me by Robby. Robby, he just drives so hard, and it's so hard to pass that guy. You can pass everybody else, but him. But Matt shoved me by him and once I got out in front of Matt, I was just tight. I don't know why. We were pretty free all day long. Before the caution came out, I mean, I was just trying to stay focused. I didn't think they were going to catch us. Our car was real consistent and didn't seem to fall off, but we got a caution and we got all bunched up. I'm usually really good on restarts, but I kept getting hung on the outside. I think the 31 picked me up and the 29 got into me, I mean, no one's fault, it's just the way it is."

JASON LEFFLER (No. 0 NetZero Hi Speed Pontiac):

"We just got real tight. Nothing really cooperated with us. It just did not work. Bad day."

GREG ZIPADELLI (Crew Chief, Tony Stewart):

"We always come here in a good attitude focused with a good car. It just did not turn out that way." (About race) "Poor finish. The Home Depot Monte Carlo ran good all day. The guys put up a great car. We kind of had a poor pit stop and gave up track position and kind of struggled from there. We put tires on that were a little loose. We were still doing OK, and then that caution came out and gave up all of that ground and big lead that you had. Just from that point on, it seemed like with 30 or 40 to go or whatever, we just struggled. Nothing went our way or did not play the right game."

JIMMY SPENCER (No. 7 Sirius Satellite Radio Dodge):

"The guys worked hard. Our motors are still off a little bit. We need more acceleration. The car is real tight, and (Crew chief) Tommy (Baldwin Jr.) kept working on it and working on it. Great pit stops. Great calls in the pits with Tommy and all the guys. It is good to get back into the top 10, without a question."

DALE EARNHARDT JR. (No. 8 Budweiser Chevrolet):

"We are pretty happy despite a finish which was not as good as we would like to have had. We were not looking too good there. We moved up a lot."

MICHAEL WALTRIP (No. 15 NAPA Chevrolet):

"We started off, and we were in left field. We got it dialed in and had a really good car running in the top 10. We got a lap down, made a lap up, and just got too tight at the end. I felt really comfortable and very confident about our car once we got the lap back, sitting there with four fresh tires. Unfortunately, 16th is all we got today. We made a good day out of it by varying our line. We moved up running around the top of this place. I have never seen anybody do that before."

KENNY WALLACE (No. 23 Stacker2 Dodge):

"We ran good. We just started way too loose, and it seems we got to get a little bit better on our adjustments. Once we got our car tightened up we get to going good. That's kind of our story all year long, but hey, we finished 24th, that ain't good, but there's 43 that started."

GREG BIFFLE (No. 16 Grainger Ford):

"It was a pretty tough day. We tested down here, and it felt like the car was a lot better than it was. We don't really know what we got to do to get our car to drive good in traffic. We get around other cars we can't keep up, and I'm just not real sure why. This is a first year team trying to figure it out; we'll just keep after it."

DALE JARRETT (No. 88 UPS Ford): (About hitting crewman):

"I didn't even care about the rest of the race. I had to finish it for the guys. They worked hard but I could have cared less."

CASEY ATWOOD (No. 91 Evernham Motorsports Dodge):

"We just started off way too loose, and it took us mostly all race to get it tightened up. We could run fast laps right there at the end, but we were already two laps down. We just started off not where we wanted to."

MIKE SKINNER (No. 01 U.S. Army Pontiac):

"You know, they say cautions breed cautions, and they were right. Our Army Pontiac had about five of them passed in the first lap and we thought: 'heck, we're going to get a good, top-15 finish. It will be a good start for us.' (Crew chief) Ryan Pemberton, everybody did a great job on our Pontiac. I just want to thank the U.S. Army for giving me this opportunity and MB2 Racing. As far as what happened, I don't know. They all got together right there. We had it missed, and one came down off the well and plowed the heck out of us. Hopefully Boris (Said) can get us a good run at the Glen, and I can continue our little venture at Michigan."

MARK MARTIN (No. 6 Viagra Ford):

"(Crew chief) Ben (Leslie) and the crew did a great job in the pits and calling the race. Turned up with a ninth-place finish. Feels good to get a top 10. We maybe had a better car than that."

LARRY FOYT (No. 14 Harrah's Dodge):

"We were making it better. I hate it that we hurt our primary car in qualifying. That was just trying too hard to make it in on speed, and this was a car we really shouldn't have brought here. The last time we ran it was at Darlington. It's just kind of our backup. We were really off at the start, and worked on the car all day. We were making it better, but it was a handful all day. But at least we brought it home in one piece."

TONY RAINES (No. 74 Aaron's Dream Machine Chevrolet): (On incident with John Andretti):

"I felt really, really bad because I know John's situation. That was a one-race deal. I was on the end of that chain reaction, and when we come in there, everybody was whoa-ing, and I was going back to the gas, and I jumped on the brakes so quick and so hard that my foot hit the brake pedal and went over the top of it. I got slowed down, but I hit him. It was an honest accident. I can't think of anyone less that I'd want to hit because John is trying to get back into this sport or get a full-time ride. I just hated it. It was a pure accident. It's happened to me before, but either way, it's no good."

RICKY RUDD (No. 21 Rent-A-Center/Motorcraft/USAF Ford):

"The damage is bad, but we could have patched it up and beat about eight cars that were in the wreck. Heck, I had a bigger fight trying to stay out of the ambulance that wanted to take me away."

(What happened?):

"The No. 5 car turned sideways. I couldn't tell what turned him. He slid back in front of everybody and there was nowhere to go. A lot of smoke. No way to miss it." (Are you hurt?) "They must have a standard policy that they if you break down on the racetrack, they put you in an ambulance. Nothing wrong with me, I'm fine. If I had gotten back to pits five laps earlier, we could have patched it up and got it back in the race. We spent five laps arguing today."

JOE NEMECHEK (No. 25 UAW-Delphi Chevrolet):

"On that restart, somebody got into somebody, and all of a sudden everybody started spinning. I don't know what was going on. It knocked the radiator out of the car. It's just a shame."

WARD BURTON (No. 22 Caterpillar Dodge):

"It was really horrible. Add to it, the car was not to my liking. The guys worked really hard, but the car was not to my liking all day. There wasn't any happy medium that we could find."

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers John Andretti , Tony Stewart , Robby Gordon