MATT KENSETH -- No. 17 USG/DeWalt Ford Fusion (Finished 20th) "They've kind of got a rule that they don't really, to my knowledge, ever police of laying back more than a car length and Gordon is famous for laying back. He was laying back a ...
MATT KENSETH -- No. 17 USG/DeWalt Ford Fusion (Finished 20th)
"They've kind of got a rule that they don't really, to my knowledge, ever police of laying back more than a car length and Gordon is famous for laying back. He was laying back a lot, so I laid back so he wouldn't pass me and then the 99 took off late because he saw everybody laying back. I got a run on the 88 and the 24 got a run on me and we kind of split him coming off two and then the 24 just wrecked me."
YOU OBVIOUSLY HAD A CAR TO BEAT, BUT YOU WERE HOPING FOR TIRES. "We were the same as the 99, but we just got too tight at the end and I couldn't run with him at the end when we needed to. I just got too tight."
HOW DISAPPOINTING IS THIS? "It's disappointing, but it all started back on the restart. Jeff is kind of famous for laying back and NASCAR has a rule that you can't lay back more than a car length or you can be black-flagged, but it's usually not enforced, so I saw him laying back. I knew he was gonnna get a run on me, so I laid back a little bit. Carl went late and that kind of started the chain and we were three-wide going into one. We came off two and I was up as high as I thought I could get and Jeff just came across. Whether it was on purpose or not, it just kind of wiped us out."
TRAVIS KVAPIL -- No. 28 Yates Racing Ford Fusion (Finished 8th)
"We had a great test here last month. We knew we were gonna be decent. Our car was awesome last week, we just didn't get the results. We were kind of handicapped starting 29th after being the first car out to qualify. That always kind of sets you back, but we took two tires on that first stop and were a little bit conservative with our setup in the beginning of the race after some changes we made overnight. The car didn't have the speed it had yesterday in practice, so we kind of undid those things and got four tires on it and the car took off. We were able to drive up through the pack and get back on the lead lap with the lucky dog and just tried to stay clean and work our way up through there all day. We just tried to stay solid and be smart."
THIS MUST BE A BIG BOOST. "That top 35, I don't feel like we're gonna have any trouble from a performance standpoint of staying there, but you never know because stuff like last week happens. We cut a tire and then today the 24 and 17 wrecked running in the top five, so stuff like that can happen. We just need to be solid these first handful of races and get a good solid foundation for these points and then go race for wins."
DAVID RAGAN -- No. 6 AAA Ford Fusion (Finished 7th)
"We needed to get some points back, so this is big. Certainly sixth place is kind of a bonus. I feel like we had a good car, but starting in the back and getting a lap down early, we were just fighting an uphill battle all day long. The AAA pit crew did a good job on pit road. We still have to work on our program in qualifying and restarts in a few areas, but a top 10 is great just to get those points and give us a little momentum going into the next few races."
PEOPLE ARE SAYING THIS IS THE YEAR FOR YOU TO SHOW SOME REAL PROGRESS. THIS MUST HELP. "Yeah, we need to get things going on a consistent basis. It seems like we can get things going here and there and we've been hot and cold, but we need to get to where we can do that every week. It's a good day for Ford and Roush Fenway. I think our car of tomorrow program is where it needs to be. Certainly we don't need to slack off any and get over-confident, we need to keep working because that's what got us here. We've just got to continue to keep working hard, so this was a good solid top 10, but we've got to continue to get better and move on."
-credit: ford racing