TODD BODINE --66-- Haas Carter Motorsports Taurus (Qualified 1st) "The car was right on the money. We made a couple of changes before qualifying. They were some educated guesses, but we knew which direction we had to go and it was right. The...
TODD BODINE --66-- Haas Carter Motorsports Taurus (Qualified 1st)
"The car was right on the money. We made a couple of changes before qualifying. They were some educated guesses, but we knew which direction we had to go and it was right. The car was awesome. The second lap was faster and I actually messed up a little bit in one and two, so that was definitely a good lap for us."
WHAT A GREAT LAP. "That was pretty awesome for an unsponsored race car. That thing was on a rail. We kind of backed up on our setup from practice a little bit. We went through our notes and made some educated guesses and hit it right on the money. The car was perfect. I got in the middle of the corner and hit it wide open and that's a good thing to have when you've got that Robert Yates motor under the hood. It handled perfect, so that was a pretty good lap for us."
WHAT ABOUT NEXT WEEK? "Nothing yet. We're doing everything like we're gonna go, but if we don't get some money or don't get some help, we can't go. It's a shame because that's a good track for us too. It's a good track for Joe, but the way it looks right now we're gonna be sitting home."
IS THERE A CHANCE ONE CAR COULD GO? "No. I shouldn't say that. I don't know what Carl and Travis have planned. Right now, we're gonna make a decision on Monday and see what happens. These things cost a lot of money to run -- just to go to the race track -- and you can't expect them to spend their life savings to keep these race teams going, so, hopefully, we can get a deal."
RICKY CRAVEN --32-- Tide Taurus (Qualified 9th)
"That was just a variety of things that Mike, Roy and the team talked about as far as changes. I'm probably the world's worst at practicing, but they did a great job with the Tide Ford. They made the right adjustments. Obviously, it wasn't enough to win the pole, but it was a good lap. It's a brand new car. The car had never seen asphalt before today, so that's the kind of confidence I have in the Tide team. They can keep building them and then bring to the track and run them."
BRETT BODINE --11-- Dura-Lube Taurus (Qualified 14th)
"I'm real happy. Todd gave us a little pointer. He was out here testing and he gave us a little pointer before qualifying on something to do with the car and that really helped. I couldn't get in the corner before and he had me do some stuff to the car and it got down in the corner so much better. I was able to get in the gas and turned a much better lap. I picked up over a half-second from practice, so that's a pretty big gain."
MARK MARTIN --6-- Viagra Taurus (Qualified 6th)
"That was a great lap and it was much better than practice. Working with Ben Leslie has just been a joy this year. I think this combination is gonna be great as we work together. I'm not sure we've got the best combination we could possibly have here this weekend, but we couldn't possibly work harder at it. We did come out here and test and that helped us out a lot, so I know when we start on our race setup that we'll be close from the very start. I just don't know how it's gonna stack up from the guys who hit it just perfect, but I'm pleased with this whole team. I think as we get more time together and work together, we'll get stronger and stronger."
COULD YOU DO THAT AGAIN? "If you gave me 100 chances I couldn't get that lucky again. We're happy with it. We didn't practice quite as well. We did come out and test and knew we were behind the eight ball when we left and we haven't done a whole lot because we've been preparing for the whole year. I think this was the car Ben had last year with Atlanta and Kurt didn't make the race, so at least we can say we're doing better after a chance to work with it. I really believe we'll be OK in the race on Sunday, but I think that we're gonna gain momentum as we go. I'm sure we're gonna have a better car at Atlanta than what we have here and, hopefully, that will be the start of good things."
JOE NEMECHEK --26-- Haas Carter Motorsports Taurus (Qualified 20th) -- "That's definitely not what I wanted. I thought I had a pretty good lap. I thought it was gonna be a lot faster than what we ran, but for some reason we just didn't go. It's just one of those things. The team is working hard, the motor is running good. Everything was there. We ran a .69 in practice and we slowed down a little bit. I thought I actually ran a little bit faster, but maybe it was me overdriving a little bit."
DALE JARRETT --88-- UPS Taurus (Qualified 37th)
"We don't know. This is a brand new race car. This isn't the car we came out and tested with, but we thought we could build a better race car than what we had here in testing. I'm not sure exactly where the speed is because these guys have changed everything on it. We don't know where we're missing it yet, but we'll have to find out tomorrow."
KURT BUSCH --97-- Rubbermaid Taurus (Qualified 3rd)
"We just came up a little bit shy. I think we were using the wind to our advantage, but I'm just so proud of Jimmy Fennig and this Rubbermaid group. This car is awesome. If we're in this type of position a few more times throughout the time, and I know we will be, we'll get our pole eventually. I think I got all those Vegas fans up on their toes that last lap. It was solid. I left a little bit on the table the first lap and I knew I had to go for it the second lap. I got into three a bit too hard. The wind changed direction and I think I used the wind to my advantage earlier. We knew it was gonna take a big lap to make the pole position here at Vegas. Everybody throw it out on the line. It's just like throwing the dice around -- you never know what's gonna happen."
WHAT WOULD IT MEAN TO WIN? "That's when the big money is on the line. That's what we tested for because when you come down here you just work on race trim stuff. That's what pays on Sunday and that's what our focus is, so we'll just apply it and see how it goes."
RYAN NEWMAN --12-- ALLTEL Taurus (Qualified 2nd)
"I got a little wide there coming off of four on the first lap and I was wide enough that I couldn't get back in the throttle the way I wanted to. I knew the wall was coming, so I figured I better just put a good lap in here and see how it goes. I know that Todd Bodine owed that to me because at Darlington last year in the Busch race I think I out-qualified him by two or four-thousandths of a second. If you would figure the math, that would be something like four inches at the start-finish line. I remember Shawna Robinson beat me for the pole at Michigan by seven-thousandths in my first ARCA race with Penske and we figured that out to about 17 inches, so this was definitely close. That was a great run for the ALLTEL car. We came out here and tested really good in race and qualifying trim, so that's a good starting spot for the race and that will get us a good spot on pit road."
DAVE BLANEY --77-- Jasper Engines Taurus (Qualified 10th)
"We're real pleased. We didn't get a whole lot of practice. We had some kind of trouble with the car and had to change engines after our first practice run, so we only got two. On the second run a guy pulled out in front of me, so I knew the car felt good but I didn't know what it would do. That wasn't bad. We're plenty happy with that."
MATT KENSETH --17-- DEWALT Power Tools Taurus (Qualified 8th)
"That's a great qualifying effort for us. I don't think we've been in the top 10 in probably two years, so that's a great run for us. We were able to back up what we did in practice and I think this one-engine deal is gonna help our qualifying a lot. It's not that we didn't work on qualifying engines, but we worked on our race engines a lot harder and our race engines were always much better than our qualifiers, so now that I think we're on a little bit more even keel with everybody, I think our qualifying as a whole should be a lot better."
RICKY RUDD --28-- Havoline Taurus (Qualified 27th)
"I think we're a bit behind most people here in Vegas. We opted not to test here and almost every other team came out here in January. That put us behind today, but I'm confident that we'll make up that distance as the weekend goes on. My Havoline guys have given me good cars in Daytona and Rockingham, so there's no reason to believe we won't have one here on Sunday."