TONY GLOVER (Team Manager Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates) NOTE : Glover is a NASCAR Winston Cup veteran. He's been coming to Martinsville Speedway since 1969, and has eaten his share of Martinsville hot dogs along the way. Glover ate...
TONY GLOVER (Team Manager Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates)
NOTE : Glover is a NASCAR Winston Cup veteran. He's been coming to Martinsville Speedway since 1969, and has eaten his share of Martinsville hot dogs along the way. Glover ate two hot dogs before 9 a.m. Saturday after downing six dogs on Friday.
"I'm going to eat eight today," Glover said. "I know it's going to be a short day, but I'm going to eat eight. I've been eating 'em for a long time. I used to buy one at a time when I was a kid, and I couldn't afford many although they were only a quarter back then. That's about all I had."
Marlin doesn't eat as many Martinsville dogs as his team manager, but he'll down four or five a weekend. "I'm not much in standing in line for food, but there's a hot dog stand in Wrightsville Beach that's so good I waited 45 minutes in line one time for hot dogs," Marlin said. "I bought about 12 I think. A friend of mine ate six of them."
When told that Glover ate six hot dogs Friday and plans to eat eight today, Marlin said. "I'd hate to be around him tonight."
STERLING MARLIN (No. 40 Coors Light Dodge Intrepid R/T)
"We didn't qualify real good yesterday, but here you either qualify good or qualify bad. Yesterday was a bad day again. We started way back last year and led some and finished fifth. We've got a good race package and we think we'll be OK.
"A lot can happen here with strategy, two tires, four tires, stay out or whatever. A lot comes into play. We'll just try to get the car driving as good as we can and get track position early and get up there in the top five or top 10 and play the rest of the race out as it goes.
"I think (son) Steadman is going to run at Nashville this weekend and then he'll probably run eight more Busch races with Keystone Light. The main thing is for him to get some seat time at different tracks. I'm not up there as much as I need to be because I'm gone so much, but I try to help out as much as I can.
"It's no different. We just go in week in and week out and try to win the race. Last week we probably had a 15th or 20th-place car from the start. We never gave up on it and finished seventh and had a little better car than that. We ran with Matt and Gordon all day and just got separated on some pit stops. We had a good car for here. We'll keep working on the car here Sunday, and we won't give up. It's too early, but if we come back here in September leading, we'll still have a shot at it. It's just way too early now to be worried about it.
"Day-to-day, Lee (crew chief McCall) pretty much gets the cars straightened out and Tony does the motor stuff and all the organizing stuff at the shop. Me, Lee and Tony pretty much put our heads together and come up with the setups. It's worked out good. I've worked with Tony a long, long time. We were real fortunate to get a guy of Lee McCall's caliber.
"It's kind of aggravating knowing you've got a good car. It's just like last week at Texas. We'd start 12th or 14th, we'd actually start 28th. By the time you got clear of traffic, the leader is coming off four and you're coming off two. It's just a hard pass. I'd like to see 'em do a deal where there's no changing tires under caution. Just have all green flag stops and it'd probably cut the tire bill in half. And the deal staying out or stopping for two tires or four tires would cut all that stuff out, too.
"We were way behind two or three years ago. We were behind in a lot of areas. Chip comes in and buys the team and Dodge comes in and that was a big plus for us. We hire Tony and Andy to be team managers, and they've just totally redone the thing. We have a new fab shop, and basically it's a new race team. Chip is a guy who likes to win and likes to run good. He gives us everything we need. Ernie Elliott and his guys do the motors and me that's a big plus for us. Everything just fell into place for us. We all enjoy racing. We came close to winning here two or three years ago and an alternator went out. Rudd ended up winning the race and me and him had the class cars of the field that day. We had a couple of other chances to win the race here, but something always happened to us.
"I think it's pretty neat (Darrell Waltrip competing in NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race at Martinsville). He used to be the king of Martinsville so it would be good to see him win today.
"Sometimes you're nose to tail and a guy checks up in front of you. You check up and the guy behind you doesn't see you get popped and turned sideways. It's Martinsville, and I love racing here. You can kind of run side by side pretty good, and it's neat for the fans. They can look right in the cars. They're on top of it and see how they're manhandling and driving the cars. Smoke is coming off when they start running sheet metal. It's a neat track for the fans.
"Chip has been to about every race this year. I think he's missed one. He's in constant contact with Glover and Andy on a daily basis, checking on how things are going. He calls me once a week and his favorite saying is "What else?" He wants to know what can be better. Since I started driving for him, we've had first-class equipment and first-class people working for him. That's what it takes.
"We've been together eight years. It's got a lot more technical now from what it used to be. You've got a couple of engineers on the team now. The fastest I run here is when I'm passing somebody. I probably need somebody to follow here. I usually run too hard or not hard enough. I may be in the top four or 25th on back, nowhere in between. I thought we were going to be in pretty good shape yesterday. I thought it was a good lap, but it wasn't. All we did was change tires. The air pressure is critical here.
"Goodyear has got such a good tire now, a lot of variables can go into it. If you're leading lap 400 and they dive in the pits, do you dive in the pits and put two on. What do you do? Slow cars are good cars. Once they lose a lap, it's hard to pass them guys. It's really hard to get back and get where you need to be. I'd love to see them go a deal where you could just change tires under green.
"Matt Kenseth is running really good. He went though a little slump last year, but the whole Roush team has gained. Busch is running good, and Mark is running good. Burton is running pretty good at times. Jimmie Johnson has surprised me. I thought Ryan Newman would be good, and he is. We've got two real good rookies running good right now."