Penske Racing Preseason Thunder - Dodge quotes on COT

NOTE: Members of Penske Racing comment on testing the car of tomorrow on Wednesday at DIS. Rain washed out the final afternoon of testing at about 2 p.m. RYAN NEWMAN (No. 12 Alltel Dodge Charger) "I think we got three or four runs in trying...

NOTE: Members of Penske Racing comment on testing the car of tomorrow on Wednesday at DIS. Rain washed out the final afternoon of testing at about 2 p.m.

RYAN NEWMAN (No. 12 Alltel Dodge Charger)

"I think we got three or four runs in trying a couple of different things. It drove OK. It stuck pretty good. It seems like it stuck better than the other car, but we'll see what it's like when it gets in dirty air and traffic. I never saw it (Busch's fast lap), but I heard about it and I think I might have heard him go by. That's cool as far as speed goes, but that's not the way we can race around here especially when you get 15 of them in a line. It'll be really hauling the mail. We proved today you can't take the plates off of them. That was still a pretty good size plate on there and that was 190 something mph. Until we get less horsepower will we run with less restrictor plate or no restrictor plate."

MICHAEL NELSON (Crew chief No. 12 Alltel Dodge Charger)

"We started out with a 15/16th-inch plate and then went to a one-inch. We kept the same gear in for the first two runs and then made a plate change for NASCAR and then did a gear change so they got a back-to-back-to-back run. We came down here working with NASCAR as far as the specs and we tried to make it as legal to what we think the current spec is as possible and give those guys some data and get ourselves started working on the speedway cars. We're further ahead today than we were yesterday. I know some other teams have done some testing. It was just a good chance for us to get our feet wet and learn a few things. It's a different animal and it was a good opportunity to get a head start for Penske Racing. It's a racecar. It's actually pretty fun for Roy and me today. We had a good time. It's a new challenge. It gives us a chance to work on something new, so we're excited about that. Actually we would have liked to run a little longer today.

KURT BUSCH (No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger)

"I thought it was great. We had to make sure of fender clearances and we just went for two laps at a time and it really shook out to be positive. We played with spoiler angles, or wing angles, and the different combinations with the plate with fuel and air mixtures. I thought the car could handle any speed it wanted to go. It gets back to a little bit of what they have with the truck series, big drag that slows the car down aerodynamically, but an open motor that has the horsepower like we're used to at all our tracks. It was real interesting to drive. It was right on that edge of sliding all four tires, similar to what we get with the regular car when we're in the draft. It was comparable. It was a nice shakedown for us I think for us to get ahead of the competition. It was a treat to go out there and drive as fast as we did at one point and then get a chance to work on the car in a realistic box.

ROY McCAULEY (Crew Chief No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger)

"The Miller Lite Dodge was a lot of fun actually because it was something different. You really feel like you're cutting some new ground. We're far from learning everything we need to know, but we definitely learned some things to get started, enough to tickle the brain and kind of help out NASCAR. They helped us and it was a real nice situation.

"We kind of split things up. We worked on gear and plate and Mike Nelson and Ryan did the opposite trend of the way we were going to see which way it would go. We put a bigger plate on and changed the year, put a lesser plate on and changed the gear, trying to get a baseline of where things were at. We finished with a one-inch plate. We split it up. We did a one-inch and a one and an eighth. (The fast lap 191.118 mph was with the one and one-eighth of an inch plate). I think it's good to have the data. I don't see us racing that. If I had to guess I'd say it looks like a one-inch with a 370 gear. (It was) 100 percent (legal) as far as the rules as I have and I can get it.

"It's actually fun to work on something different because through the years you start beating your head into putting the same spring in, OK, do that. I won't say it gets monotonous, but you're trying so hard to pick the small specs out of anything. With this there's a large window of opportunity and the people that do their homework the most will exploit that window of opportunity initially. That's why we're here. When the COT comes on line, the people who have done their homework are going to exploit it for a given amount of time. Now the garage area is full of the smartest racers in the world and they'll catch up. Everybody will catch up, but I think a couple of cars will be dominant because they've done their homework ahead of time.

"I really wanted to run the rest of the day so we could put the cars in the draft and see how much of a hole was being made so to speak. Can you pull up from a hundred feet or can you pull up from 400 feet? With an Iindy-style car it was large and I'm not sure what that effect is and we were going to work on that this afternoon. I'm sure it's similar. I'm just not sure how big it is."

-credit: dodge motorsports

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Series NASCAR Cup
Teams Team Penske