ELLIOTT SADLER (No. 19 Stanley Tools Dodge Charger) Finished 9th "It was a great all-around weekend for us. We qualified third and ran ninth. We were in the top-10 all day. We just got loose in the middle part of the race and lost some track ...
ELLIOTT SADLER (No. 19 Stanley Tools Dodge Charger) Finished 9th
"It was a great all-around weekend for us. We qualified third and ran ninth. We were in the top-10 all day. We just got loose in the middle part of the race and lost some track position, but fought back there at the end of the race. I'm proud of my Stanley Tools guys today. I'm disappointed that we couldn't make the $1 million donation to charity -- the Children's Miracle Network. I let Stanley Tools down with that. It was a great day for everybody and I'm looking forward in moving on to Bristol next week."
RODNEY CHILDERS (Team Director -- No. 19 Stanley Dodge Charger)
"We tried a little bit of this and a little of that and nothing really got it (the car) going. There at the end, we made some changes that we knew would help on a short run and was able to finish in the top 10. The car was good all weekend. We just couldn't get it really good when we needed it."
RYAN NEWMAN (No. 12 Alltel Dodge Charger) Finished 21st
"We changed everything on the car that we could today to try and get our Alltel Dodge to drive better. Not the greatest finish, but a pretty good rebound after we started dead last. We were a 38th-place car at the start of the race and almost brought home a top-20. We'll take it and head to Bristol."
ROY MCCAULEY (Crew Chief, No. 12 Alltel Dodge Charger)
"We've got some work to do. I'm not real happy with the car right now. We had to start in the back of the field because of an engine change on Saturday during practice. Ryan (Newman) did a great job compensating and getting something out of race day by finishing 21st. We'll be testing this week and see if we can improve on our package."
SAM HORNISH JR. (No. 77 Mobil 1 Dodge Charger) Finished 22nd
"I don't know what to say. We were terrible at first, lost a lot of track position then had to work our way back from there. It's a struggle. Just didn't make the right adjustments from Happy Hour yesterday to the beginning of the race. And then we took two tires when there was only one car behind us trying to gain some track position and ended up a lap down because of it. We'll keep working at it. The Mobil 1 Dodge ran well. We probably had a top-15 car, but didn't get a top-15 finish." THE RIGHT SIDE OF THE CAR IS SCRATCHED UP. DID YOU HAVE A CLOSE CALL? "Yeah, lap two I went down in there and the thing didn't even turn. It's frustrating because we weren't having any real problems with push in the car yesterday."
CHRIS CARRIER (Crew Chief, No. 77 Mobil 1 Dodge Charger)
WHAT MAKES THIS TRACK SO DIFFICULT TO FIND THE RIGHT SETUP? "It's just the fact that the track pavement is pretty old, it's pretty worn out. There's not a lot of grip. It's still a high speed racetrack so Goodyear brings a pretty hard tire, which gives you way less grip. And what it does it makes the margin of error very small so when you make small adjustments you can go overboard and that's what we did before the race. We went overboard with trying to fix what we thought was going to be our biggest problem today and we made the other way be the biggest problem and we about made it to where we couldn't fix it. We adjusted on it all day long and finally in the last fourth of the race or maybe 20 percent of the race we got it pretty good but it still needed something changed that we couldn't do on pit road.
We weren't the only ones sliding around. Like Patrick [Carpentier]. He ran really good, had a good practice, good qualifying, looked good yesterday, looked good the first half of the race. They probably made some little adjustments trying to fix it a little bit, trying to make their car into an eighth-place car instead of 12th-place car and they did something, obviously, just a little bit wrong that hurt their car pretty bad and didn't have a very good finish. Man, it's all in experience and communication and chemistry and knowing how much to go and the crew chief knowing how much to listen to the driver or not listen to the driver and how much impact that is. The driver's trying to learn how much to tell the crew chief and the pit crew and the engineers on how much he needs and so on and so forth. It's all part of the learning process. It's a tough place and California will be just as tough. It's a two-mile racetrack, big long turns and those long turns go into big, long straightaways. And when you're slower through the turns it just kills your straightaway time. Again, the margin of error is not very big. Next week's margin of error [at Bristol] is going to be really small. We're looking forward to that. It's my hometown. It's great racing. It's like going to a December game at Lambeau Field -- even without Brett Favre."
PATRICK CARPENTIER (No. 10 Tow Truck in a Box Dodge Charger) Finished 30th
"The car was amazing at the beginning of the race, was really fast. It was actually easy to keep up with these guys and just started getting looser and looser and looser and got so loose from entry of the corner to exit I was sideways, so I was kind of dirt tracking the whole race. It's just sad. We had a good start and held on it for quite a while and didn't finish where we wanted. I don't know what happened."
REED SORENSON (No. 41 Target Dodge Charger) Finished 33rd
"The first 80 percent of the race, the car was out of control. The last two or three runs, we could actually race around people. We made a lot of changes during the race. Whatever we did the last two stops helped because we were able to race with other cars around us."
KURT BUSCH (No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger) Finished 36th
"We're already in the experimental mode trying stuff and hoping to learn from it. What we had for the setup here today was quite different from what we ran here back in June. We used a completely different baseline. We ran pretty much top-10 for the first-half of the race when we started making adjustments that made our Miller Lite Dodge loose in, tight in the center and loose off. We just got behind when we put spring rubbers in and bled the shocks. We got back there in four-wide traffic on a restart and cut down the left rear tire. We had to pit twice under green -lag racing and that just put a fitting end to our day."
ROBBY GORDON (No. 7 Jim Beam Dodge Charger) Finished 37th
"A tough day for our Jim Beam Dodge. We had a very good car here all weekend and to finish where we did is a little disappointing. We had an electrical fire inside the car that burned the wiring near the tachometer. I looked down and saw smoke coming from the dash -- then a puff of flame. I grabbed my water bottle and poured it on the fire to put it out. It was crazy."
KASEY KAHNE (No. 9 Budweiser Dodge Charger) Finished 40th (Kahne returned to complete 30 more laps before retiring for the day).
DID THE ENGINE LET GO? "Yeah, I had a problem right when I pulled into the pits . It happened real quick. I did all that I could do in the car to see if there was anything wrong with the switches....all the gauges looked good. We just had something break inside the engine, something real small, but big enough to take us out."
HOW UPSETING IS THIS CONSIDERING WHERE YOU ARE IN THE POINTS? "I'm upset because I thought we had a car to finish inside the top-10 today. We were working on it all the way from the 32nd position. We did a lot of good things and this is a good race track for me and the whole team. To have a bad race is disappointing with the points, but it's what it is. We've got three (races) to go and we can still definitely make the Chase."
ARE YOU CONCERNED ABOUT HOW FAR THIS MAY DROP YOU IN THE POINTS? "I don't know where we'll end up, but I don't think that we'll get hurt too bad. We'll probably drop to 11th or 12th, maybe 13th. We're not going to be far from 12th. It's going to be very attainable to get into the Chase. We'll just have to have some good races."
ENGINE PROBLEMS ARE UNCHARACTERISTC AT GEM, DID YOU HAVE ANY WARNING? "No warning at all. I haven't had an engine problem in three years at Gillett Evernham. (Gillett Evernham) does a great job, but something broke inside the engine that ended our day."
ROBBIE LOOMIS (Executive Vice President -- Petty Enterprises)
"We struggled with the handling on both cars. We finally got decent with the 43 in the middle of the race, but lost it there at the end and finished 27th. It wasn't a very good day for either car."
-credit: dodge motorsports