Loudon: Chevy qualifying quotes

Joe Nemechek, No. 25 UAW/Delphi Chevrolet Monte Carlo: "This UAW/Delphi Chevy has been running really good in practice. We thought we had a shot at a top-ten in qualifying. I just don't know where all the speed is. The sun has come out a little...

Joe Nemechek, No. 25 UAW/Delphi Chevrolet Monte Carlo: "This UAW/Delphi Chevy has been running really good in practice. We thought we had a shot at a top-ten in qualifying. I just don't know where all the speed is. The sun has come out a little bit. It's a different racetrack than we've ever run on before and it's very difficult to get in the corners right and I thought I had a pretty decent lap. But it's not very good."

Michael Waltrip, No. 15 NAPA Chevrolet Monte Carlo: "I about spun out on the straightaway coming off (turn) two. I carried so much speed through there it just didn't stick. When I got up on the straightaway the thing just jumped out from underneath me. And I let off on the second lap. I let off to save it, which I had to do. I know it was so close. I did a decent job. It was too much speed for the conditions. The track sits for a while and some of the grips gets out of it, it seems. I'm real pleased with the job Slugger and all the boys did. But we want to get a pole pretty bad. We've been nipping at it. We've probably got one of the best average starting positions in the sport this year without a pole. We just keep at it and we'll get one."

Dale Earnhardt Jr., No. 8 Budweiser Chevrolet Monte Carlo: "The car was a little nervous getting into the corners and stuff. This ain't one of our favorite tracks or one of our better tracks. I'd like to have a better starting spot."

Jeff Gordon, No. 24 DuPont Chevrolet Monte Carlo: "I was just going for it in the first lap. I drove down in (turn) three and everything felt pretty good and I just got a little loose right in the middle of (turns) three and four. It messed up the first lap quite a bit and probably hurt the second one a little bit too. I didn't have as much momentum coming to the line as I needed to. The guys did a great job on this DuPont Chevrolet. It was fast. We had a good lap there and we'll take what we can get. I know it won't be in the top five, but hopefully it'll be in the top ten. We'll be happy with that."

Kevin Harvick, No. 29 GM Goodwrench Service Chevrolet Monte Carlo: "It was a pretty good lap. We struggled a little bit in qualifying trim in practice. We concentrated on race trim the first half and got a little bit behind. We changed everything underneath this GM Goodwrench car before qualifying and we were a lot better than we were in practice. We ran the same speed, which was good. That should get us close to the top twenty and we should be good to go from there."

Mike Skinner, No. 4 Kodak Max Chevrolet Monte Carlo (qualified 2nd): "We pretty much backed up what we run before. It's kind of like you don't mind when you miss a putt by a foot, but when you miss one that close it kind of makes you mad a little bit. The guys did a great job tuning old yellow up. We've had some tough months. I think some good times are ahead of us.

"This Kodak car was pretty good right off the truck. We struggled a little bit during practice. It's been pretty loose getting in the corner. From the center off, it was pretty good. On cold tires, the car was really loose on entry and on exit. I felt like if we could come to the flat pretty good, we could get a pretty good lap. I watched the weather change a little bit. And in the middle of qualifying, started questioning our car a little bit. Maybe it would have been better to go out first. But then the weather started getting better. I feel like that had a little to do with it.

"Our car drove really good last week. We really struggled. We haven't had a lot of good finishes. But our car has been a little bit better than it has been finishing. We had a really good car at Daytona but got took out. But we've got a good car here for this weekend, and hopefully it'll race half as good as it qualified.

"I think in Winston Cup nowadays, it takes a little bit of everything (to do well). They (crew) did a really good job tuning up the motor. I don't think the racetrack was as quite as fast as it was this morning in practice. We backed up our lap. Chris Carrier and the guys did a really good job and we had a good set of Goodyear tires on there and I think it's just a bit of everything. The motor ran good. They usually tune it up and are really aggressive with the valve train for qualifying. I always beg to go ahead and race that stuff, but they'll be unbolting it. They'll slow it down a little bit for racing.

"I think they've done a good job of making this place a better place to race. It's gotten a few rough breaks in the past couple of years and I don't think they're deserved. But it's a good racetrack. Actually, I watched the (Craftsman) Truck practice and the fast trucks. I watched (Kevin) Harvick and some of the other guys that were out there. I saw that they were pretty much running the line that we ran before they put that bottom groove in there. And I thought maybe the best thing for us to do was to try to run where we ran in the past. I thought maybe we could use that very bottom lane during the race."

Robby Gordon, No. 31 Cingular Wireless Chevrolet Monte Carlo: "We're fairly pleased. We ran about the same time we did in practice and that was our goal to run a little faster or come back and repeat. Last time we started 31st and came back to win the race."

Bobby Hamilton, No. 55 Square D Chevrolet Monte Carlo: "We were pretty happy with that. We unloaded and we had a couple of problems and lost almost a full hour of practice. We had a shot at the pole today but we didn't get it. The guys worked real hard today. This is the car that we run so good with at Martinsville, and we don't run it nowhere but Martinsville. I decided to bring it here and it seems like it's paying off."

Jimmie Johnson, No. 48 Lowe's Chevrolet Monte Carlo: "It was a good lap. We thought we had a shot at the pole but I think my inexperience cost me. There was really nothing for me from practice to qualifying to remember for reference points getting in the turns and I made some mistakes on both my laps getting into the corner. It was a lot of easier in practice when I was out there time after time and had it memorized. But sitting for a couple of hours and then going back out there, I just made some mistakes going into the turns.


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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Dale Earnhardt Jr. , Jeff Gordon , Bobby Hamilton , Michael Waltrip , Mike Skinner , Kevin Harvick , Joe Nemechek , Robby Gordon , Jimmie Johnson , Chris Carr