RICKY CRAVEN, NO. 32 TIDE PONTIAC GRAND PRIX: NOTE: Craven brought out the fourth caution flag of the day on lap 73, running over debris and hitting the wall in Turn 2. Casey Mears then sheared the right side of Craven's car off as Craven...
RICKY CRAVEN, NO. 32 TIDE PONTIAC GRAND PRIX:
NOTE: Craven brought out the fourth caution flag of the day on lap 73, running over debris and hitting the wall in Turn 2. Casey Mears then sheared the right side of Craven's car off as Craven bounced off the wall. "We cut down a right rear tire. We were riding around out there with a lot of debris on the track for about six or eight laps, and I guess we finally ran over some of it. As soon as it went green, I knew I should have pitted, but you have to ride it out to the end. I'm fine, just discouraged. We were running so well. We dug ourselves a hole, but we had gotten back up into the top 15 and then we ran over some of that debris on the backstretch. You know, one out of 20 times that kind of thing gets you, and it got us. But we'll just keep battling on. We've had a tough few weeks. We haven't qualified well all year and we dug ourselves a hole on Friday. But we were strong today, we were charging toward the front. We were starting to pick up spots and we had finally worked our way in the top 15 before the tire went down."
BOBBY LABONTE, NO. 18 INTERSTATE BATTERIES CHEVROLET MONTE CARLO:
NOTE: The polesitter, Labonte was running 11th when the engine blew. It is the second engine failure in four races for Labonte "We turned the guts out of it, I guess. It started giving me a warning about Lap 2 and it vibrated a lot after that. We got running pretty good. We came back and got caught up on the chassis, we were behind on that. It just blew up on us going into Turn 1. We missed on the chassis for a while there. We got it better and got going again. Then it let go. It's one of those deals. You get pretty frustrated when you're bad, when your chassis isn't good. You blame yourself for not getting it as good as you should have. When you do get it better and you get up there and this happens--at least we're getting better. We had five good races in a row, now we've had five bad ones, so we hope it'll go back to five more good ones."
KEVIN HARVICK, NO. 29 GM GOODWRENCH CHEVROLET MONTE CARLO: Finished 2nd:
"We were good to go on fuel. The car was just a little loose on the beginning of that run and Ryan [Newman] was on rails. He got away from us. The car came around to us there at the end. It was still a good day for the GM Goodwrench Chevrolet, to come home second and to beat all the guys we need to beat in the points is what we need to do every week. This team is pretty hot. It's a lot of fun. I told somebody a couple days ago that I think we're probably a little bit better than we were in 2001. I'm just excited to carry on throughout the year and for everybody at RCR."
TONY STEWART, NO. 20 HOME DEPOT CHEVROLET MONTE CARLO: Finished 3rd:
"We changed everything but the driver and the steering wheel, and I'm not so sure that's not on the list of things to do here. We can't seem to get the thing right at the end of the race. We're good at the beginning, and luckily we did a good job with the fuel mileage today. The engine shop did a great job of helping us get the fuel mileage we needed. It didn't feel like I did a very good job today."
DID YOU LIKE SEEING THOSE CARS PEEL OFF FOR PIT ROAD LATE IN THE RACE?
"Nah, I wanted to run 20th today. Obviously, we wanted to see them drop off, but the thing is, we want to do it by passing cars, I don't want to do it by fuel mileage. This fuel mileage racing sucks."
YOU HAD A PRETTY QUICK CAR MOST OF THE LAST PART OF THE RACE. WHAT DID YOU DO TO MAKE IT BETTER?
"Nothing. We just succeeded in making it worse all day. I'm getting sick of all this fuel mileage racing. We've done it at Indy and we did it here. We have a good car to start the race and we just make it worse as the day goes on."
ROBBY GORDON, NO. 31 CINGULAR CHEVROLET MONTE CARLO: Finished 6th:
"It was a good run for us all in all. I raced Steve [Park] pretty hard, that was kind of fun. It is what it is. We just continue to get better and better as a team, the cars are getting better and we're scoring more points, so that's a good thing." ARE YOU HAPPY WITH THE PIT STRATEGY TODAY? "Yeah, I was pretty happy with it. I was trying to get a little ballsy there, but it was a good run for us."
STEVE PARK, NO, 30 AOL CHEVROLET MONTE CARLO: Finished 5th, his best finish of the season.
YOU'VE GOT TO BE PLEASED WITH THIS FINISH.
"I really am, and it was a great run for the America Online Chevrolet, Mike Beam and all the guys. We're brand-new and me and Mike are just jelling together. It was a great effort on their part, we got good gas mileage and Mike made a good call in the pits. I was conserving there at the end and Robby [Gordon] was catching me, so we had get to racing there when I didn't know if we had enough fuel to go the last lap. It was great. That's what having great teammates like Robby and Kevin Harvick is all about. I'm just happy to be here with a good top-five finish for a team that's new, it's been struggling. It's not only good for myself, it's good for Richard Childress Racing, which had all three of its cars in the top six. I'm glad it's over with, man. A top five, that's pretty cool."
JOHNNY BENSON, NO. 10 VALVOLINE PONTIAC GRAND PRIX: Finished 10th, his best finish since Dover in June. He was also the top Pontiac finisher in today's race.
"I think we took about a 20th-place car today and got a top-10 finish out of it. Man, when this race started we were struggling, but my crew chief James Ince kept on working and working and working and we made it better. I think we changed the entire attitude of the car today. It was a struggle all day long but you know the only thing that matters is where you are when the flag waves and we got ourselves a top-10. I'm pretty happy. I love Michigan, I mean we want to win here so bad, and maybe some day that will happen, but for now 10th isn't so bad."
TERRY LABONTE, NO. 5 KELLOGG'S/got milk? CHEVROLET MONTE CARLO: Finished 13th:
"We never got the car freed up all day long. It was just tight, tight, tight. We never could get it loosened up."
TONY RAINES, NO. 74 GFS MARKETPLACE CHEVROLET MONTE CARLO: Finished 24th:
"It was fair. The car was good on the short run, it would just get really, really tight at the end of the tire run and we just could not get that out of it."