Long Pond: Dodge Motorsports Friday quotes

Dodge NASCAR Winston Cup quotes from qualifying postponement at Pocono. CASEY ATWOOD (No. 7 Sirius Satellite Radio Dodge Intrepid R/T) "This is a little bit disappointing. I know we could have done a lot better. I think we could have...

Dodge NASCAR Winston Cup quotes from qualifying postponement at Pocono.

CASEY ATWOOD (No. 7 Sirius Satellite Radio Dodge Intrepid R/T)

"This is a little bit disappointing. I know we could have done a lot better. I think we could have qualified the Sirius Dodge in the top-10, just based on what we did last year. It's tough to say since we didn't get to practice. We'll just have to put that behind us and do the best we can with what we have in race trim. Pocono is one of my favorite tracks. It's just the kind of track that suits my driving style. I think we've got a good car with the Sirius Dodge, so hopefully we'll be able to pass everybody and get to the front."

STERLING MARLIN (No. 40 Coors Original Dodge Intrepid R/T)

"This is a fun track to run on. There's a lot of room to run on it. We just shift one time. We tried shifting twice and slowed down half a second. We seem to have a pretty good combination for this track.

"This is the third time we've been here in the past month and a half. We came here to test after Talladega and it rained us out. We came to test a couple of weeks ago and it rained us out again. We got to run about half a day. We had the same situation up in turn three. It got to seeping water all day. Hopefully they'll get the problem fixed overnight and we'll get to run some tomorrow.

"This helped the heck out of our qualifying average. I think we average starting about 29th, but we'll race good. We came back from way back last week at Dover to run in the top five. We did the same thing at Charlotte. We brought a car we won with at Darlington and Las Vegas. I think we would have qualified pretty good here. If we hadn't got the pole, maybe we could have qualified in the top 15.

"It's right where the pavement comes together, where the two seams come. Water is seeping out of it. You think you've got it together and it just keeps coming out. Rusty went out and tried to run the second day we were here, and he couldn't make a lap. The next day everything was OK, and everybody got to run.

"It started raining about four or five o'clock that evening and it rained all night. It quit about eight or nine that morning and we couldn't run. I guess that was about two weeks ago. NASCAR knew. I'm sure somebody told 'em.

"The motor men looked at Pocono as one of the races we were worried about 500 miles. You turn a lot of rpm's down the straightaways. This at least will keep a few miles off the motors that we would have put on them in practice. We were really concerned about the 600. We didn't know what it would be like, and we didn't have any trouble. You look back over last year, and I don't think we've had any more motor failures than we had last year. I think the motor guys backed off the motors just a little bit. That put some liability in them. Our guys say the motors look pretty good after the races, so it's a 500-miler here. It's a long race and you turn a lot of rpm's all day long.

"We brought a terrible car when we came to test. We made it a show car. We couldn't really get it to work for us, so we put it out to pasture.

"We had a meeting this week and found some problems we had. I guess Richmond, Charlotte, Dover, we'd raced in the top five and thought we had a good car, but we hit a problem the last 100 laps or 100 miles. The chassis seems to go away real bad. Last week at Dover, we came from 27th to fourth or fifth in 50 laps and no cautions, just racing hard. We thought we had a real good car all day. Rode around fourth to sixth all day. The last hundred miles the car quit driving good. I talked to some other guys and their cars quit driving good. I think it's some of the problems we've had with the chassis, and hopefully we'll get it fixed. It wasn't the power. The handling on the car went away. I think we found the problem. I'll tell you tomorrow evening.

"We've got a (136-point lead), but Matt's been running good. I guess he lost an engine in practice at Dover and he had to start in the rear and he had problems. It's kind of weird. Look at Happy Hour at Charlotte. We were second quickest and ended up 11th in the race. A lot of guys fast in Happy Hour at Dover weren't good in the race. Something is going on. I don't know what it is. We've just got to try to get our car driving as good as we can. If we've got to go to Kentucky to test or Nashville and test, we've got to figure out what's going on with the chassis late in the run. If we've got to run a 400-mile race and see what happens, we've got to do it because we've got a lot on the line for the year.

"The car was set up for qualifying, but we'll move the weight around in it and change a couple of springs and shocks. It'll be a normal as usual Saturday Happy Hour practice. I don't know what the rule is now. It used to be if you didn't practice you couldn't run the race.

"You get down to lap 158 and you're close on your fuel window. Some guys can and some guys can't. The Roush guys seem to get good fuel mileage. The whole race, Tony (Glover) and our guys are trying to plan strategy. You have to get the car driving good, but I hate to see it come down to a fuel mileage deal. If it does it does and there's nothing we can do about it.

"We get decent fuel mileage, but I'd say looking at Roush's stuff they get the best fuel mileage. We've got guys watching fuel mileage. I hate to see it come out to a fuel mileage deal, but racing has been won here on fuel mileage and that's part of racing.

"We're racing to win. We can sit back and run 10th to 15th. I want to win, and we want to win every week. We're in a little slump, but if we go all year and 19th is the worst finish we've had all year, then we've had a good year. I think we'll get our stuff turned around here, get back in the top five and get us some wins."


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Series NASCAR Cup