Loudon II: Kahne - Friday media visit

KASEY KAHNE (No. 9 Budweiser Dodge Charger) IS THERE A LITTLE DIFFERENT FEELING COMING TO THE RACETRACK TODAY KNOWING THAT YOU'RE NOT IN THE CHASE? "Yeah, a little bit. We don't have anything to think about other than trying to get 13th in ...

KASEY KAHNE (No. 9 Budweiser Dodge Charger)

IS THERE A LITTLE DIFFERENT FEELING COMING TO THE RACETRACK TODAY KNOWING THAT YOU'RE NOT IN THE CHASE? "Yeah, a little bit. We don't have anything to think about other than trying to get 13th in points and learning some things to be fast. We'll just do everything we can to get some more Dodges in Victory Lane as the year winds down. There's a little less pressure. Last week (at Richmond) it seemed like there was a lot more to talk about. 'Can you make it (Chase)? 'Are you going to make it'? Now, we don't have any of that and just have to focus on this weekend."

DO YOU HAVE A BITTER-SWEET FEELING KNOWING THAT YOU WERE 70 POINTS AWAY FROM BEING THE #4 SEED IN THE CHASE HAD YOU QUALIFIED? "I'm glad that I don't have to think about that anymore. We're not -- so I'm not going to worry about it."

DO YOU STILL LIKE THE CHASE FORMAT? IS THERE ANYTHING ABOUT THE CHASE FORMAT THAT YOU WOULD LIKE TO SEE CHANGED? "I like the (Chase) format. I like how (NASCAR) gave bonus points for the winner's (of each race). That put a little more emphasis on winning. You still can make the Chase without winning (a race) by running consistent. If someone has three of four wins and doesn't make the Chase because their car wasn't as consistent, I'm not sure if that's the right way or not, but at the same time, you still have to be consistent in the points every week if you want to win a championship. Your consistency has to be a factor in making the Chase and being a part of it. I think 12 cars are better than 10. It's always way too close from 8th to 14th (place). So 12 (Chase spots) is good."

WHAT IS THE TEAM'S APPROACH HEADING INTO THE FINAL 10 RACES? "I think that we just keep on doing what we've been doing. We've been a sixth-place to 10th-place team all year except for three or four weeks where we weren't as good because of some things that took us out of that spot. I feel like we're a real good sixth to 10th-place team. I feel that if we keep trying to learn how we can get these cars better and better, get our engine program better, if we do that, we'll have a good shot at winning a race or two more this year."

IS THERE ONE AREA OF FOCUS ON THE CAR YOU WANT OR NEED TO MAKE BETTER? "I think handling come to mind first. You always have to keep improving the handling. As far as engine goes and power, we need our Dodge's to run better. I think that's across the board (with all the teams)."

WHAT'S YOUR OUTLOOK FOR THIS WEEKEND AT LOUDON? "We ran decent here last time (spring race). OK...but not exceptionally well. We need to get a good balance and keep working on our combination. The goal is still to put our Dodge in Victory Lane and win as many of the final 10 races as we can. I think we'll unload a good racecar and try to dial it in as much as we can today and tomorrow."

-credit: dodge motorsports

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Series NASCAR Cup