Phoenix: GM teams qualifying quotes

Jeff Gordon -- ...

Jeff Gordon -- #24 DuPont Chevrolet
Pole Position

YOU LOOK EXCITED COMING OUT OF YOUR RACE CAR, WHY SO EXCITED? Well, crazy things happen when you least expect it. We had a great car for the race yesterday when we were doing our practices. I was so happy with it. We put it in qualifying trim and could not go anywhere, so I just really didn't think we had a car capable of running that kind of speed. My hat's off to the guys in this DuPont Chevrolet. They do an amazing job. Everything the car was doing yesterday during the qualifying run, it did the exact opposite today. The car just rolled through the center of the corner awesome. The first lap I knew it was a throw away, I knew it just didn't have the grip in the corner. But the second lap. We've got other guys coming up still to qualify, but still, that's a great lap.

DID YOU DIG DEEP DURING THAT LAP? The first lap I was a little nervous. Yesterday I was just so, so tight, but I knew that if I had a car that rolled through the center, I could really push the car. When it came down to that last lap, I absolutely had to. You have to all the time, these days.

Bobby Labonte -- #18 Interstate Batteries Chevrolet
4th position

WHAT ARE YOU LOOKING FOR IN A FINISH THIS WEEKEND? A good solid night, that's what we need. We're really excited about coming up here with our Insterstate Batteries Chevrolet. We were good in practice and qualified better than we practiced. Going out first, I didn't know what to expect, but it was a good lap for us. Hopefully it will stay up. So far we're really happy.

THE VISIT BY JOE GIBBS TO THE SHOP. WAS THAT A MORALE BOOSTER FOR THE TEAM? That's what it was. He was in town, I guess, and had a little pow wow with everybody and basically, what you said, team morale.

HOW IS TEAM MORALE IN THE SHOP RIGHT NOW? I don't think we're really down. I think we've just been stricken with stuff we couldn't control, probably. You know, he doesn't come around as much as he used to. When you hear him every Tuesday, you get used to it. But when you hear him once or twice a year, and there are a lot of employees now that have never heard him speak. It's just good timing.

HOW ARE YOUR SPIRITS? You know, it's miserable probably from Monday, better on Tuesday, a little bit better on Wednesday, Thursday. I'm excited to get to the racetrack by the time we get to the race track. Monday's a little bit tough. But, I feel better about not having much to do with it. If I had a lot to do with it, I'd be like, we need to do this, this, this, etc. But right now, until we race we don't know what to do, except just race.

Brian Vickers -- #25 GMAC/ Chevrolet
5th position

YOU IMPROVED OVER YESTERDAY'S PRACTICE TIMES. CAN YOU EXPLAIN? We put it in qualifying trim basically. The team's been doing an awesome job. Lance put an awesome setup into the car yesterday, really focused on race trim. We pushed it a little far and they closed the gate on us right when we were going out to make a qualifying run (on Thursday), so as far as practice times that hurt us. But what's important is right now. Right now is what counts. We've got a solid starting spot and I'm looking forward to a good race.

Tony Stewart -- #20 Home Depot Chevrolet
6th position

HOW DO YOU FEEL IN THE CAR REGARDING YOUR BURNS? The car is pretty comfortable. It's just getting in and getting out that's the worst part about it. I'm having a hard time sleeping at night, but, I've been real comfortable. Scott's got a fan blowing on it that's keeping it nice and cool, so we're not going to have any problems running with it.

The car center from the NASCAR medical liason team have been doing an awesome job, helping us and keeping it nice and clean. We're doing everything we need to do and we're doing that part right. I really don't feel it when I'm in the car. I told the guys I should have just slept in the car all week, that's the best I've felt. There are no problems with it.

NO SPECIAL PADDING? No, it's halfway where the seat stops. There's nothing that's supported right there where it is anyway, so we'll just dressing like we've been dressing it and keep air blowing on it.

THE RECENT VISIT BY JOE GIBBS TO THE RACE SHOP Yeah, it was one of those motivational days, just to kind of keep everybody's spirits how about things lately. It's nice when you get Joe to come in and do that. It's a good thing. It was probably one of the best speeches I've ever heard him give. When you get down like that, you need to keep everybody pumped up about what we're doing. So, it was a good day.

Dale Earnhardt, Jr. -- #8 Budweiser Chevrolet 15th position

I'm pretty happy with that lap. It's way better than what we had in practice yesterday. We gave up a little bit of speed going into the corner, but we got an awesome kick on exit. When you can do that, you carry a lot of speed down the straightaway. I'm reall happy, looking forward. It will be cool racing under the lights. I'm looking forward seeing how the Busch cars do.

Pete Rondeau -- Crew Chief -- #8 Budweiser Chevrolet

HOW WAS YOUR QUALIFYING RUN? It was a good run, and better than practice. We struggled a little bit in that second practice, we learned a few things in that second practice that helped us out today.

DID YOU PUT IN SOME QUALIFYING SIMS YESTERDAY IN PRACTICE? We did a couple of qualifying runs. One qualifying run in the first practice that was a closer time to what we thought it was going to be today. Some of the other people did later runs. We felt that we did ours at the right time.

HOW DOES DALE JR. FEEL ABOUT THE CAR? He's pretty happy. He said it will be a good piece for tomorrow.

Scott Riggs -- #10 Valvoline Chevrolet
16th position

Not as good as I wanted to be. We didn't quite pick up as much as these other guys had. The track was little slick for us. The car still had a pretty good balance. Just a little tight across three and four. I might have gotten into three a little hard, so it cost us a bit. We've got a long race and the race track is pretty wide, we can make it happen. We'll be in good shape.

Jason Leffler -- #11 FedEx Express Chevrolet
18th position


It wasn't as bad as we thought we were going to be, but not as good as we wanted to be. We made a little adjustment there and got a little tight. But I think the car is good for tomorrow.

SO YOU MADE SOME CHANGES FROM YESTERDAY? We made a ton of c hanges from yesterday and today. It helped and we made a couple of little last minute changes. Probably we shouldn't have, but that's racing. I'm looking forward to the race tomorrow.

Bobby Hamilton, Jr. -- #32 Tide Chevrolet
19th position

The car is good. It puts a little bit on you because it's whole different deal. When you're top 35 you can be a maniac in qualifying, but here you've got to get a lap. You've just got to go do your deal. Same old Phoenix, whoever gets in the car the hardest, gets in the gas the fastest is going to be the quickest. We're going to run good.

Jeff Burton -- #31 Cingular Wireless Chevrolet
20th position

No, we wanted to be a little bit better in the Cingular Chevrolet. But we've got a good car for the race. We got a little bit tighter on the second lap than I wanted to be. Got through one and two, but three and four got a little bit too tight, kind of mismatched it up. Not bad.

Dave Blaney -- #07 Jack Daniel's Chevrolet
21st position

HOW WAS YOUR QUALIFYING LAP? I don't know. It wasn't very good I don't think. We're just slip-sliding around too much. You know, we were happy with it yesterday. We just got some different weather with it today. We were so good yesterday we hated to change it, so that might bite us a little bit. But, we'll take what we can get.

HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT THE DUSK START TIME TO THE RACE? Yeah, I don't know. We'll see how it goes. We got a little bit of practice last night. It didn't change all that much, just gained some grip. It's the same for everybody.

-gm racing-

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Dale Earnhardt , Jeff Burton , Jeff Gordon , Bobby Hamilton , Bobby Labonte , Tony Stewart , Jason Leffler , Scott Riggs , Brian Vickers , Dave Blaney