Las Vegas: Kyle Busch post-race interview

Kyle Busch (2nd place) No. 5 Kellogg's Chevrolet It was definitely a good day for the Kellogg's Robot Chevrolet. It was a lot of fun. To be able to bring a second place finish home to the Fox/Century folks that were involved here today for the...

Kyle Busch (2nd place)
No. 5 Kellogg's Chevrolet

It was definitely a good day for the Kellogg's Robot Chevrolet. It was a lot of fun. To be able to bring a second place finish home to the Fox/Century folks that were involved here today for the event and the movie coming out, that came out Friday. It's probably going to be the number one movie so I was one spot short. We've still got a long year ahead of us. I hope this wasn't just a fluke but qualifying on the pole two weeks ago in California and finishing second here in Vegas. It's a tremendous opportunity for the whole team, putting the #5 and #25 cars in the same building. Being able to go out strong here is definitely the awesome thing. Just working on the cars all day here is what we did. You know we were tight, tight, tight always in the center. To be able to work on that all day, Alan Gustafson and the guys made awesome calls there and got the car handling better and I was able to drive by all those guys on the outside to come back up through to the second spot.

DO YOU RATE A SECOND PLACE FINISH IN THIS RACE AS BEING BIGGER THAN ANY OF YOUR VICTORIES IN THE BUSCH SERIES?

If it was a win, probably. But, you know what? I haven't actually gotten a win since our accident in October of last year. It's just another one of those second place finishes that we could have turned into a win but we're glad that our teammate was able to win. I can't say that it's been bigger than any of our Busch Series victories just yet, but it's definitely right up there with him. Right up there with them. Probably Lowe's Motor Speedway is my biggest win because it was in front of all the Hendrick Motorsports people and in front of all the whole racing people around North Carolina. And it was our home track, Lowe's.

HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT THE IDEA OF A SECOND RACE IN LAS VEGAS?

I think it should be here. An October or September night race sounds good.

WHEN YOU WERE CHASING JIMMIE PRETTY GOOD, HE HAD A LITTLE BIT OF A PROBLEM WITH WIMMER AND YOU WERE ABLE TO TRIM SOME OFF THE DEFICIT. WERE YOU ABLE TO GET CLOSER OR WAS IT JUST A LITTLE BIT?

I was obviously excited that I was catching him, having a shot just to kind of get up there, but then once Jimmie got through another set of lapped cars and got through there pretty good...and I got to them and they were side-by-side. So, I kind of lost that ground again. Anything can kind of play around in the lap car world. You know, I was there last week, so I probably screwed up a lot of people. It's all a matter of how you can get through the traffic and stuff like that. Jimmie was trying to go low on him and I guess Scott was giving him the outside to go around him and they got bottled up--no big deal. I'm sure Jimmie would have been upset if I won and he lost, but...

THE EARLY PART OF THE SEASON AS SHAPING UP AS ROUSH AND HENDRICK, WHAT IS YOUR PERSPECTIVE ON THAT?

I'm just excited to be here. It's fun to be associated with such a great organization in Hendrick Motorsports and what Mr. Hendrick gives us all. Just for what the chassis, body and engine shop and everyone...they just work their hearts out. It goes from the front office to the dumpster guys, the guys that sweep the floor. It just doesn't matter, everyone does there job there at Hendrick Motorsports. Their job is to be number one and obviously we're working towards trying to be there. We've got the Roush guys to try to beat but it's definitely going to be a good battle. And like Kurt said, don't count out anybody else just yet. It's a long season ahead of us. Those guys will go test, they'll get it done. DEI will go test, Ganassi...Yates, everybody. There's just a tremendous amount of opportunity out there and for everybody to get going.

PRESSURE ON YOU BEING IN FRONT OF YOUR HOME FANS....WHAT DO YOU THINK OF THE WAGERING?

I had a bunch of guys that put money on me so I was wishing the #48 car would have pulled over and let us win. They would have made some bank. I bet you all of the sportsbooks would have gone broke! But, it was pretty cool. Everything was fun this weekend but I bet next year I'll have a lot lower odds.

YOU SET THE AGE RECORD FOR QUALIFYING AND RAN WELL THIS WEEK. ARE YOU SURPRISING YOURSELF?

No, I'm not surprising myself. ....(A Coca-Cola is placed in front of him) No, not Coke! Pepsi's better. Anyways, back to the question. I'm not really surprising myself. I just wish it was easier on myself to try to finish this well every week. In the Busch Series I could finish top 10 every week. In the Cup Series, it's just a tremendous amount harder. There in the middle of the race I thought, 'Damn, we don't even have a shot for 15th!' But the guys kept working on the car and got it running better for us and we were able to pass guys on the outside and come back up to second place. So, I wish I could have obviously won today, anybody would wish that. We could have set that youngest winner record. It probably would have been pretty, pretty hard for anybody else to beat coming up.

NOW THAT YOU AND KURT ARE RACING EACH OTHER HOW DO YOUR PARENTS DIVIDE THEIR TIME IN THE PITS?

I hope my Dad stays in the Hendrick Motorsports pit because that's where his job is! He works at Hendrick Motorsports. He used to work on my ARCA team and he works around a little bit in the organization now. You know, Mom...they both hang around both of us a lot. It's cool to be able to have such a family that's great like that. It doesn't matter who's up front or who's behind or whatever. They both support us very much.

DID YOU FIGURE HOW THAT TIRE GOT FLAT?

I didn't figure it out, no. The guys were going back and pushing it behind the wall. I can only assume that it was coming back on the access road--a bunch of junk coming back there and stuff like that might have cut it. I didn't feel anything going wrong with it in the last few laps. I probably wish it was going down a little bit which would have made the car looser where I probably could have caught Jimmie, but we were just too tight.

WHEN YOU'RE RACING AGAINST YOUR BROTHER, DO YOU THINK ABOUT THAT OR DO YOU THINK ABOUT OTHER THINGS?

You're focused on the task at hand, obviously, and just trying to get laps and make it to the end and work on your handling and make sure it gets better. I'm trying to think of a time where we ran side by side together, I don't know if he was passing me...he probably was passing me. I just was always noticing him up front, leading sometimes or running second or third and thinking, "He's got a good shot to do this." I don't know what happened on pit road, if he had a slow stop or what exactly happened. But he got mired back in traffic and that just kind of hurt him right there but the #48 was really strong and it probably would have been a really, really good race between him and the #97 if they would have restarted 1,2. You know, we came back from....I think we restarted like 10th or something like that on the last restart and drove up to second and Kurt was farther back than I was. It was pretty cool that we were both able to come up through there.

YOU MADE A GOOD MOVE IN THE POINTS

Oh, come on. Now all we have to do is keep it there, or move up even further which would be great. That's just pretty cool. I mean, it shows that the #5 team hasn't lost what it had from years ago when Terry won the championship. We're looking forward to bringing this car up to the front every week. You know, Terry was doing an awesome job, it's just that things weren't really clicking. And he wanted to go back to a partial schedule. They threw me in there. Everybody is saying that I'm not ready but we're just going to go out there and try to do the best we can and if we wreck a couple of cars, win a couple of race....whatever. We've just got to make sure we're doing out job at hand and do the best possible job that we can every week.

-gm racing-

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Kyle Busch
Teams Hendrick Motorsports