Ragan - Pocono II Friday Media Visit

Pocono Raceway

DAVID RAGAN – No. 6 UPS Ford Fusion

CAN YOU TALK ABOUT YOUR POSITION? “Our mindset here at Pocono is just to capitalize on a track that’s been good to us in the past. We ran OK here in the spring. We think we’ve got a better team, a better car this weekend than we had in the spring, but I guess regarding the wild card and making the Chase, I’ll go back to what we felt like would get us in from day one and you’ve either got to be in the top 10 in points, I think you’ve got to have two wins or be in the top 12 or 13. Thirteenth may get in, but I don’t think so. I think you’ve got to be 11th or 12th in points or have two wins, so that’s what we’re working on. You can’t make it 14th in points. I don’t think you can make it 15th or 16th, so we’ve got some good tracks in front of us. We’re right there in the mix. We’d love to be sitting sixth or seventh or eighth in points right now, but we’ve had really fast cars. It’s just a matter of not making mistakes and can’t wait to get back on the race track and get going.”

David Ragan, Roush Fenway Racing Ford
David Ragan, Roush Fenway Racing Ford

Photo by: Ashley Dickerson, ASP Inc.

HOW DOES THE EDWARDS SIGNING AFFECT YOUR DEAL AND UPS? “I’m glad that it’s just over. Steve Newmark and Jack and our management team are working on it very diligently. They’ve also got Matt Kenseth’s car to work on finding a sponsor and then finalize the UPS program and our deal for next year, so now that Carl is signed, that can be put to rest and we can move on. I’m happy to see it. I’m glad it happened now. I wish it would have happened six weeks ago, but that was certainly the top priority of Roush over the last six weeks, in my opinion, and maybe now they can move on. All I can continue to do is what I need to do on the race track and the management at Roush will keep doing what they need to do to negotiate with UPS and look for some other sponsors as well.”

WITH PAUL WINNING DOES IT PUT MORE PRESSURE ON YOU, AND CAN YOU SPEAK ABOUT YOUR TRIP TO WALTER REED? “I think with Paul winning, other than Paul being a good friend of mine I couldn’t be more happier to see him winning, that’s the last thing we wanted to see. We wanted to see Carl win, Kyle Busch, Jimmie Johnson, Kevin Harvick win those races in the top five or six in points. Anybody that wins a race from 8th to 20th puts more pressure on us, so I think that when we go to Richmond 11th, 12th, 13th, 14th and probably 15th in points will all have a win, so it’s gonna be an exciting Richmond. Like I say, if you’ve got two wins, I think that’s gonna be very good or you’re gonna have to be 11th or 12th in points. It’s gonna be very exciting and I’m glad we run well at Richmond. And then Walter Reed yesterday, I’ve had some members of my family in the military over the years and they’ve never been injured to go to a hospital like that, but to see young kids – and I still feel pretty young – but to see those guys that are 19, 20 years old, 21 years old, that maybe they don’t have any limbs or they just have one arm and a prosthetic leg and they’re in pretty good spirits. They’re happy to serve our country and it makes me proud to be an American. I would hate to know I had to pack up everything in the U.S. and go halfway across the world and fight like that and may return, if you return, so they were all just happy to be alive and you definitely get a new sense of appreciation for what those guys and girls do, so I very much enjoyed the trip and can’t thank all the NASCAR guys for making it happen. I think they really enjoy it too. There are a lot of NASCAR fans. You don’t meet one guy who doesn’t know something about NASCAR. They’re all Dale Jr. fans, but I do like going up there. They’re fun.”

ARE YOU NOW A DENNY HAMLIN FAN AND HOPE HE GETS INTO THE TOP 10 AND DO YOU THINK THE FACT CARL RE-SIGNED VALIDATES ROUSH FENWAY AND SPONSORS MAY HAVE A MORE FAVORABLE POINT OF VIEW AND EASIER TO ATTRACT SPONSORS? “I’m not a Denny fan and I am a Denny fan, so we’ll leave it at that. I still feel like we control our own destiny in making the Chase. I don’t think you deserve to be in the Chase if you’re 16th in points with one win. If you’re 11th or 12th and you’ve got a couple wins or something, you deserve to be in there so we control our own destiny and we’ll see what happens. As far as Carl coming back, yeah, absolutely, I think it makes Roush Fenway still, in my opinion, the strongest team out there today. I think that the sponsors that Carl will attract because he is Carl and he’s been a part of our company for a few years before I got there, and it’s good to have that. I think we can build on having guys like Matt Kenseth and Greg Biffle and myself, Carl, we’re all a little different, we all have different types of driving styles on and off the race track, and, yeah, having Carl there is a big asset. Obviously, I know how good of a driver Carl is. I would hate to know that I had to line up against him every week with him being on another team, and we’re good friends. He’s often got an extra seat on his airplane, so I like that. I can bum a ride every now and then when I need one, so there are a lot of good things about Carl coming back. I know that everyone at Roush Fenway likes it and I just can’t wait to move forward.”

By: ford racing

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Matt Kenseth , Kevin Harvick , Jimmie Johnson , David Ragan , Kyle Busch
Teams Roush Fenway Racing
Tags ford, nascar, nscs, pocono, ragan, roush, sprint cup