Las Vegas: Stremme - Dodge Friday interview

DAVID STREMME (No. 40 Coors Light Dodge Charger) COMMENT ON THE TRACK "It's the same as when we tested here, but I wish they had left the tires alone. There are more wrecks and more stuff happening now that they've made the tire harder....

DAVID STREMME (No. 40 Coors Light Dodge Charger)

COMMENT ON THE TRACK "It's the same as when we tested here, but I wish they had left the tires alone. There are more wrecks and more stuff happening now that they've made the tire harder. It's hard to get a feel. When the car starts to break loose you're done. It was that way on the Busch car and the Cup car. The track is fine. The groove has widened. It's bumpy, but I like bumps. Some people don't like 'em, but it's bumpy off four, too. The tires don't have grip and you carry so much speed through the center. Guys are right-siding cars coming off the corner and just sliding up there. It's going to be interesting. After the Busch race on Saturday the lane might be real high."

ARE YOU GOING TO TAKE IT EASY IN QUALIFYING? "I want to get the best starting spot I can. I don't know if we've got a pole car, but I think we've got a top-five car. I think strategy more than anything is going to be the key Sunday, and that's where the Busch race is going to help. Smaller fuel cells, the tires aren't wearing a lot. Obviously track position will be huge. I think if you have a good car you'll still be able to drive up. You just won't be running long green-flag laps. You might do a little different setup."

ARE YOU SURPRISED AT ALL THE IMPROVEMENTS SINCE THE TEST HERE? "I didn't think the infield would be done. It's pretty slippery driving on the concrete though when there's water on it, but they've done a real good job here. My opinion is kinda still up in the air on the track. We're here to race, and that's what we're going to do."

IT'S A LITTLE WARMER THAN WHEN YOU TESTED HERE. WILL THAT MATTER? "I don't know. So many things are different, the tires and everything. It's hard to tell. In the night time, what's going to happen when it cools down one or two shades? That's going to happen during the race. The track will shade."

WILL THE BUSCH RACE REALLY HELP YOU OUT FOR CUP? "It always does. Anyone who says that a Busch race doesn't help them out is lying. It is different, but right now my Busch car has a similar setup to my Cup car. When we make changes in the Busch race, I'll be able to do that on Sunday, too. We'll know what's a positive change and what's a negative change. That's what we learn out of it."

WHAT DOES A 10TH-PLACE RANKING MEAN TO YOU AND THE TEAM? "The top 10 is nice, but it's so early in the season. If we're 10 or 12 races in and still in the top 10, I'll be really excited and flattered. The main thing is we're real competitive when we unload. That's the only thing I ask for each week, and the team is doing that right now. I'm on the top of my game, too, so everybody is doing their part and we've just got to keep building."

-credit: dodge motorsports

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Series NASCAR Cup