Open: Bliss - Pole winner interview

Mike Bliss 0 NetZero Chevrolet Pole winner I guess I don't have to worry about these guys (All-Star Challenge qualifiers) beating us, because they've got a pit stop. I'm glad I didn't have to worry about that. I was a little bit surprised, I ...

Mike Bliss 0 NetZero Chevrolet
Pole winner

I guess I don't have to worry about these guys (All-Star Challenge qualifiers) beating us, because they've got a pit stop. I'm glad I didn't have to worry about that. I was a little bit surprised, I think, because we weren't that good in practice. We were too loose, but I think that the race track changed quite a bit in our favor and I think that kind of helped me.

HOW IMPORTANT IS IT TO START AT THE FRONT IN SUCH A SHORT RACE?

I think it's going to be the biggest, I think personally, that it's going to be a key to be start close to the front, because the track's so fast. It's going to be a little bit hard to pass until everybody's cars start giving up grip. I knew that going into it that we'd have to qualify good and I was hoping that we had something to do it.

HAVE YOU TRIED THE LOW LINE HERE ON THE TRACK?

When we tested here in testing I did that. I was in the old Charlotte line. Kept figuring out everybody kept moving up and moving up and gaining more grip. It just seems like there's more grip out there. I saw out there and watched the big screen there and hadn't been there all day and just figured I stayed where I was. It's such a momentum place right now that it doesn't kill the momentum as much up there. They told me my first lap on the back stretch and I knew I got through 1 and 2 a lot better on the second lap and I think I watched Kyle go better on the second lap, so I thought I'd try it. It really stuck a lot better the second lap.

WHAT DO YOU THINK OF THE NEW TRACK SURFACE?

You know, I like the old track because it had a lot of character because it was tough and you had to work hard to get a hold of the race track. Now it seems like it's almost an equalizer and makes the cars a little bit closer. But, we'll see tomorrow night after the races. You're handling is going to go away of course on a lot of cars. It's going to be hard to pass the first 15 laps because you can't go around the outside, you have to do it wide open I think. And on the bottom you have to be pretty good. It's going to be tougher to pass, I think, but maybe I'm wrong.

DO YOU THINK THIS TIME WILL SURVIVE QUALIFYING NEXT WEEK?

We tested here and we did a qualifying run but we weren't in an impound situation and we had at least 250 lbs more right front spring than tonight. I was really concerned about driving in the with the balance, which we have to race with. And just hurting the front end of the race car and just hitting the ground. So I was really kind of surprised that we didn't do that. But, I'm going to say we're going into a night qualifying, we're going to be able to run pretty close to wide open through 1 and 2 at least. I think a Ryan Newman is probably going to be in the 27's, I think.

-gm racing-

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Ryan Newman , Mike Bliss