JEFF BURTON --99-- Citgo Taurus (Qualified 22nd) "It's been really good, but going this early is not good. All of the cars are a lot slower than they were and the track will get better and better. Historically, going early here is a bad thing...
JEFF BURTON --99-- Citgo Taurus (Qualified 22nd)
"It's been really good, but going this early is not good. All of the cars are a lot slower than they were and the track will get better and better. Historically, going early here is a bad thing and I think today won't be any different. Schrader ran a decent speed based off what he did in practice, but everybody else slowed down quite a bit and we're in that group."
RICKY CRAVEN --32-- Tide Taurus (Qualified 8th)
"Again, we had good improvment over practice but we've got a ways to go before any of us will be happy for Sunday. We're gonna have to have a good hour and a half tomorrow and I'm sure we will. Then we can go after it Sunday."
DID THE MIX OF SUN AND CLOUDS CAUSE SOME HAVOC AS FAR AS SETUP? "You could probably say it didn't help us. It would probably have been better with the cloud cover, but the sun wasn't our biggest problem."
WHAT ABOUT RETURNING HERE? "It would be a great thrill for me to win in front of this hometown crowd because they're the greatest fans in the world. I feel like I've fallen short in the past, but we're determined to correct that on Sunday."
KURT BUSCH --97-- Rubbermaid Taurus (Qualified 6th)
"We're surprised with that lap. We threw a crutch at it and the team was really surprised that it worked, including me. We've never qualified well here on sticker tires or scuffs, but this is a great step in the right direction for us."
THE SUN WAS OUT FOR YOU. "You always try to find any advantage you can find in this Winston Cup game. We through a crutch at it and it did help, it just made it odd to drive in all the other parts of the corner. It was something that worked, but it's something we probably won't ever do again just based on the fact we just rolled the dice and it worked."
YOU'LL GET TO START TOWARDS THE FRONT THIS TIME. "I hope that we can stay up front and stay in that clean air so we don't get caught behind people. Last time we got caught in the back and it created a push condition for us. Hopefully, we can stay up there where the nose stays clean and we can stay up front. It's just a matter of when you have to pass cars, it takes a different setup. When you can ride around up front, you can stay on top of your setup and know which way you have to make the adjustment to chase the race track."
RUSTY WALLACE --2-- Miller Lite Taurus (Qualified 15th)
"It was a pretty good lap. I ran an .04 in practice and I really thought I could get back down in the oh's, but I didn't get it done. I think I left too much laying on the table getting in the corner. I got in a little conservative and didn't let it roll through the center enough. I was waiting for it to slide all over the place like it always does here in qualifying, but it didn't do it. We're seventh right now and we just hope it holds up for a good top-10 qualifying effort."
WHAT ABOUT THE SUN AND CLOUDS? "The weather always plays a big deal at every race track we go to, but I think the biggest problem we have at New Hampshire, for some reason, is when the cars get off the race track and everything cools down, the tires get real cool and the cars get cool, it really gets tough to get a hold of the race track. I believe the biggest problem is just getting heat in the tires to qualify here. I think that's the biggest problem here."
IS IT TIME FOR A WIN? "It really is. Right now we're 140 out of the lead, something like that. We can win this championship, that's all we're thinking about. We're trying to get points, points, points. I've won the races before and haven't won the title. I'd love to win the title, but before it's all done we do need a win and, hopefully, it'll happen here at New Hampshire."
TODD BODINE --26-- Discover Card Taurus (Qualified 35th)
"I'm disappointed in the run. We went out early and I was hoping it wouldn't hurt us too much, but it's looking like the track's speeding up. We made some changes and it made the car loose through the middle and off the corner. It won't be a good starting spot, but I had to come from behind last time so it can be done. Hopefully, we'll have two grooves to make passing through the field a possibility."
ELLIOTT SADLER --21-- Motorcraft Taurus (Qualified 37th)
"We're gonna have to have good pit stop strategy again and see what happens. We just couldn't get a handle on it for qualifying. The car was just way too loose and I didn't want to put it in the wall during qualifying. It was just way too loose for what I could get out of it. I'm just glad we made it through qualifying OK. We'll probably have to take a provisional and start in the back, but Pat will come up with some good pit strategy for Sunday to get us back to the front."
DALE JARRETT --88-- UPS Taurus (Qualified 23rd)
"That's the same time we ran in practice, so I don't know if the others have slowed down or what, but we've just been struggling. We work and get it into the center, but then we can't get off the corner. Then we try to work on getting off the corner and we can't get through the center, so we're just fighting it right now. The weather probably didn't help, but I wasn't paying much attention to that. I knew we had our hands full other than that. We made some adjustments that were probably good for a little speed, but it's still not driving as good as we need it to."
MATT KENSETH --17-- DEWALT Power Tools Taurus (Qualified 17th)
"That was OK. I didn't get a very good lap really. My first lap I was real loose off and I couldn't really get to the gas. My second lap felt better, but it was slower so I don't know. I didn't get real good laps, so if that gets us in the top 15 for how bad the laps were, that'll be OK."
WAS THE TRACK HARD TO GET GRIP? "It's OK. It's usually tough for qualifying, but the track seemed OK. My car doesn't feel as solid as it felt here last time. The last time I think we qualified sixth and it was a pretty easy lap. This time here I had to work pretty hard and didn't go as fast."
RYAN NEWMAN --12-- ALLTEL Taurus (Qualified 1st)
"The guys did an awesome job preparing the ALLTEL/Mobil 1 Ford. We got a good draw, which I think was a small advantage, but I think the car was definitely the fastest one here all day. Hopefully, it can be that way on Sunday. We need to prepare for a different race here on Sunday."
A DIFFERENT TRACK THIS TIME THAN LAST TIME? "The track looks a lot better down in three and four, especially. One and two wasn't the issue the first time here, but the track was coming up a little bit in three and four and now it doesn't seem to be having those kinds of issues. The track is very similar in turns one and two versus three and four, so, hopefully, that'll make for a good race on Sunday."
YOU'VE FINISHED SECOND A BUNCH CAN YOU GO ONE NOTCH HIGHER? "I hope so, that's a record we're not shooting for is finishing second the most times in a row before a win. We'll just do the best we can. That's what we continue to do all season is just keep doing the best job we possibly can. It's gotten us some good races and some good runs. Sometimes one little thing can take you out, but, hopefully, the ALLTEL/Mobil 1 Ford will be there on Sunday."
MARK MARTIN --6-- Viagra Taurus (Qualified 7th)
"That's probably all we could ask for. We were fourth in practice, but I was afraid we weren't gonna be able to back that up, especially with the way our car was set up and then the track getting slick. We weren't anticipating that at all. The car has lots of potential and that's why I was able to qualify seventh with it. I got two great laps with a great car."
DAVE BLANEY --77-- Jasper Engines Taurus (Qualified 25th)
"I don't know. I felt like the lap was actually better than practice, but it wasn't even close. I don't know where we missed it at. We're a couple tenths off where we hoped to be and, like I said, don't really know where we missed it."
WEATHER PROBLEMS? "I don't think so. You didn't really see any pattern in qualifying of something like that, so I don't know. Maybe we weren't air-pressured up enough, I don't know, but it felt better than 18th. It felt better than that, but we didn't get it."