Monte Carlo Joliet qualifying

Jeff Green, No. 30 AOL Chevrolet Monte Carlo: "I think the track has slowed down a little bit. Our main focus was to get in the top 36. I think we have a car - if we didn't have the problems we had this morning with the motor - could be in the...

Jeff Green, No. 30 AOL Chevrolet Monte Carlo: "I think the track has slowed down a little bit. Our main focus was to get in the top 36. I think we have a car - if we didn't have the problems we had this morning with the motor - could be in the top five. But hopefully we'll end up with a good starting spot for this AOL Chevy. Something happened during practice - the car started blowing oil. The guys put another motor in it and hopefully it'll be just as good. Hopefully we can gain on that. We just need some more practice. This facility is pretty awesome. It's awesome by yourself. I think it's going to be a tight racetrack for 43 cars. As time goes on, it's going to open up into two or three grooves. I don't know if you'll see that this weekend, but it'll get better as time goes on."

Jeff Gordon, No. 24 Dupont Chevrolet Monte Carlo: "We're real disappointed with that run. The sun and the heat have become a factor. We were expecting to go for the pole today. Some guys are hitting it and some aren't. The track has changed a lot since we tested here (April). There's a lot of grip here, which is typical of a new track. We were one of the first cars here. A lot of cars have tested since then and we've been running quite a bit in the last couple of days. It gradually loses grip, which is good. It makes for a better race for everybody. We've been really struggling with it. The set-up has changed quite a bit since we were here. It looks like a lot of guys are finding the track to be a little slick right now."

Jerry Nadeau, No. 25 UAW-Delphi Chevrolet Monte Carlo: "It was a good lap. We were real loose in practice. I told the guys to just leave it alone and we'd just see what happens in qualifying. It looks like it got a little hotter and the track got a little slicker. And we were a little bit loose. I tell you, it seems like I've qualified outside pole so many times that I just laid it on the line and brought it back home in one piece. Hopefully that'll give us a decent starting spot. The guys did a good job. The car's been good since we unloaded. This is a beautiful facility. Over the years, I think it's going to become a really good racetrack."

Joe Nemechek, No. 33 Oakwood Homes Chevrolet Monte Carlo: "It was a good run for the Oakwood Homes Chevy. Andy Petree and all the guys have worked really hard to give me a good racecar for here. This is my first really high-speed race back after my injury. We usually run really good at these new tracks. We'll be up front. We had a good lap. That was all I had. We've been in qualifying trim since we've been here, so we don't really know what the racing will be like on Sunday. My teammate (Bobby Hamilton, No. 55) did a lot of race runs when they were here testing. Hopefully the groove is going to spread out in the corners so we'll get a second groove. Hopefully there's enough banking that we'll have a lot of grip once we get out in that second groove. But it's just going to take time. The Busch race tomorrow will help open that up and then all the Happy Hour practices will help too. We're pleased with the car. We've got a good motor and everybody's done a good job."

Mike Skinner, No. 31 Lowe's Chevrolet Monte Carlo (note: after crashing in practice, Skinner switches to the Chevy he ran at Michigan - finished 20th): "We messed up our primary car this morning. I don't really know what happened during practice. I was talking to a couple of the other drivers and we were looking everything over again. It looked like we hit a little fluid over there down in the corner. This is our back-up car and we didn't even have our best qualifier in there. The motor ran good. The car felt good. We were a little conservative on the set-up. We didn't want to tear this car up as well. When they asked me what kind of air pressure I wanted, we went on the conservative side. It pushed a little bit down here in turn one. I probably overdrove it. But we're pleased with our lap."

Kevin Harvick, No. 29 GM Goodwrench Service Plus Chevrolet Monte Carlo: "Our car was really tight. The track's really changed since practice. I know some of the guys were talking about the heat. It's kind of cooled down and the wind has picked up, so I think that's all gone away. Our car was really, really tight. I expected it to be a little freer than that. But that's a good lap for the GM Goodwrench Chevy."

Steve Park, No. 1 Pennzoil Chevrolet Monte Carlo: "We were actually a little bit on the tight side. We were tight in practice and I think the track is just getting slick. If you're a little bit tight, you get tighter. If you're a little bit loose, you get looser. We've been struggling since we got here, and we know we've got a little bit of work to do. But we really feel this Pennzoil Chevrolet is going to be good on Sunday."

Dale Earnhardt Jr., No. 8 Budweiser Chevrolet Monte Carlo: "We were a little faster in practice and the car just didn't drive the same. But we had a great car in practice. I don't think the weather is playing a role. When you have a car that drives good, it drives good no matter what the weather is like. We should have been fine. But we went in the corner and the car was a whole lot different than it was in practice."

Michael Waltrip, No. 15 NAPA Chevrolet Monte Carlo: "That was a bad lap. We hit it yesterday for a little while. All day today we've been off. The NAPA Auto Parts Chevy was just not doing a very good job and the car didn't stick very good and we didn't get in a very good lap."

-GM Racing

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Dale Earnhardt Jr. , Jeff Gordon , Bobby Hamilton , Michael Waltrip , Steve Park , Mike Skinner , Kevin Harvick , Joe Nemechek , Jeff Green , Jerry Nadeau , Andy Petree