BRIAN VICKERS, No. 83 Red Bull Toyota Camry, Red Bull Racing Team Starting Position: 10th How was your qualifying run? "It was okay. We got the car finally turning better but it was just too loose. For Sunday's race we have to figure out how...
How was your qualifying run? "It was okay. We got the car finally turning better but it was just too loose. For Sunday's race we have to figure out how to keep it turning and be able to get the throttle down on exit. A lot of the stuff we've learned on this new car we can apply here, but this is the first time we've raced this car here."
How is your car handling on this race track? "I think we have a decent car. We were a little free in the back end. We've been either a little bit tight or a little bit free. I didn't have the confidence to really get in the throttle. I was hoping it would be a little bit better than that. We'll work on it tomorrow. We're not going to have a great starting spot. I'm a little bit disappointed with it."
Does an early qualifying draw affect the results of your lap? "That definitely doesn't help. You always have to judge against the guys you went against. I was hoping to at least run a little bit better than practice and we ran a little slower, so a little bit disappointed in that."
DAVE BLANEY, No. 22 Caterpillar Toyota Camry, Bill Davis Racing
Starting Position: 27th
KYLE BUSCH, No. 18 M&M's Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing
Starting Position: 28th
Did you get what you expected out of your qualifying run? "The car seemed fine until I got to the middle of (turns) one and two and it just snapped loose on me and I had to get off the gas. Almost the same thing happened off of (turn) four, and it just killed the momentum both times. The M&M's Toyota was pretty good in race trim in practice today, so we'll work on it tomorrow and get ready for Sunday."
JOEY LOGANO, No. 96 DLP HDTV Toyota Camry, Hall of Fame Racing
Starting Position: 29th
Are you satisfied with your qualifying effort? "I think I left a little bit out there. I'm glad we are in though. We weren't the best in practice and we found some speed there. The guys worked on the car a lot, obviously while I was in the Nationwide car and found something with it. That was a plus. Personally, I felt like I left just a little bit out there just going from car to car -- I think about a half-a-tenth. I'll take it and we'll go from there. It's a lot better than all of us expected."
MICHAEL WALTRIP, No. 55 NAPA Toyota Camry, Michael Waltrip Racing
Starting Position: 30th
How was your qualifying run? "It was disastrous. We had a pretty good car in practice and I don't know what we did. I don't know if we got a set of tires that didn't quite feel like I thought they would. You have to turn left about three times hopefully during the course of a lap: you leave the pit, you turn left getting to (turn) three so you can run to the start/finish line with a good momentum, left getting into turn one and left into three again. All three of those are very key components to running a good lap and every time I turned left, nothing happened. I just went flying past the turn with my wheels cut -- it was really, really disappointing because we were respectful in practice and felt like we could just tweak it a little bit and go out and have a good, fast run. I was looking to run in the .40s or .50s, so obviously we're disappointed."
What's behind the progress and success MWR teams have had in the recent races? "It's been a long time coming. About March or April we started to make a jump in performance and we started to level off, and in my case going down hill. At that point in time we addressed our direction and worked on our direction and started to empower some of the folks that work on the cars down on the floor to help with the decision-making process to help building better cars and faster cars -- to help to have a better foundation so that engineering and all of our support functions of a race team can come into a better foundation. I think it's worked. I'm really proud of Cal Wells (executive vice president of operations) and all the folks: Eric Warren (vice president, technical director), Bobby Kennedy (No. 55 crew chief), Mike Clark (fab. shop ) - he had a lot to do with this new card - Ryan Pemberton (No. 44 crew chief) has won races and built winning teams -- he has a lot to do with our direction as well. What you're seeing now started about four months ago and fortunately for us all the planning and how we laid it out has turned out to be a better direction for us."
What will the addition Formula-1's Steve Hallam as director of race engineering mean to Michael Waltrip Racing? "We have to be respectful of Steve's knowledge and his history and we have to understand that he has a lot to learn. My goal is for six months of the year he watches, observes and learns and then all that knowledge he has coupled with the way we go about things will enable him to contribute sooner rather than later. One of the most fun things about him joining us is there's about seven or eight guys in this garage area that are from that world over there and it's like Elvis is coming over here. They come up to me and say; Will you introduce me to him? He's really a neat guy.' Obviously, as an owner that makes me real proud but also very quick to point out that just because we live on this side of the ocean instead of that side, there are a lot of smart men and women that work inside this garage area. Steve's going to be the first to tell you that. He wants to just get in and see how they do things here and see if he can help us.'
DENNY HAMLIN, No. 11 FedEx Freight Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing
Starting Position: 31st
How was your Camry in qualifying? "It was a little tight, just like we were in practice and the car ran basically the same time -- so no different."
DAVID REUTIMANN, No. 44 UPS Toyota Camry, Michael Waltrip Racing
Starting Position: 41st
TONY STEWART, No. 20 Home Depot Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing
Starting Position: 42nd
How do you feel about racing at Kansas? "We've been decent here. We've been decent all the way up 'til that qualifying run right there. I don't know what happened there. Something must have happened. We were decent in practice this morning, for sure."
Do you still feel like a title contender? "I don't know. I think Jeff Burton said it best last week -- it was my favorite quote of last weekend's race is that we're 20% into this so there's 80% still to go. That's a lot -- that's a big percentage still to go."
Can you have a late season streak of top finishes? "You never know. From week to week these cars are so sensitive that if you find something it's normally pretty big. It's just a matter of one day at a time right now."
MICHAEL MCDOWELL, No. 00 Champion Mortgage Toyota Camry, Michael Waltrip Racing
Starting Position: DNQ
-credit: toyota motorsports