Phoenix II: Dodge teams race quotes

Kurt Busch (No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger) Finished 2nd "We did have three or four opportunities to go for Jimmy. It's something special. I don't know if I'm supposed to talk about my team and my crew right now or what Jimmy is doing in this...

Kurt Busch (No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge Charger) Finished 2nd

"We did have three or four opportunities to go for Jimmy. It's something special. I don't know if I'm supposed to talk about my team and my crew right now or what Jimmy is doing in this sport. We were pretty good today, but we weren't that good (as good as the No. 48). What he's building on and what they're (No. 48 team) doing with three championships in a row, it's something very special. I encourage all the fans to come out and watch and be there on TV, Jimmie Johnson is putting a whooping on everybody. But I have to thank my crew. Pat Tryson, great adjustments all day. I love working for Roger Penske. The Miller Lite Dodge was fast. We really put up a fight. I was proud to finish second today.

"We had a great car today and we got beat by an even better team. I love putting up a fight at the end to go for the win. We had plenty of opportunities. We just got beat by a better car. We felt like we had a great race today. We had a great racecar underneath us. We had a great effort all around with pit stops, changes during the race, nice and steady progress all day. We thought we were on our game. We thought we had most of the group covered, but we just got beat and we got beat by something special."

THE FACT THAT JIMMIE IS RUNNING FOR A CAMPIONSHIP, DID THAT AFFECT THE WAY YOU CHALLENGED HIM TODAY ON THOSE LAST COUPLE OF RESTARTS? "I had as a game plan to at least get close enough to him to make him think big picture and to force him into actually making it cross his mind. I just couldn't get that close. Of course I want to race a guy clean when he's running for the championship. I would want him to do the same for me. It was a matter of trying to get to his bumper, but I couldn't quite get there. I couldn't quite put enough pressure on him. I knew that I had all the race fans up on their seats. I was hoping to put on a good show. I was wanting to get there...wanting to get next to him. I wanted to win for our team, but just came up a bit short. We got beat by a really good team."

ARE YOU SUPRSIED AT HOW EASY JIMMIE AND CHAD ARE ABLE TO MAKE THIS CHASE LOOK? "Yes and no. I mean '04 was a battle to the end. I wish every Chase could be like that so that every driver gets to go through the gut wrenching feel that we had to go through. As a quick timeline, in 2006 these guys peaked. They hit their game. That's when we had the old downforce car and they were tough to beat. In 2007, it was transitional year. They were really strong with the new car (COT) and they were real strong with the old car. And if you win in a transitional year, that's only going to bode well for the future. In 2008, they're on their game; it's something special to watch."

WHEN YOU WATCH A TEAM GET INTO A GROOVE LIKE THE 48 TEAM, DOES IT MAKE YOU MARVEL AT WHAT THEY HAVE DONE? "That restart when he was behind you (McMurray) and I was running third, I'm like, 'alright, here's our chance to juke it up a little bit...let's see if Jimmie struggles.' He (Johnson) went high, he cut low, he was underneath Jamie and clear by the dogleg. I watched something so special and said, 'that's why they are so dominant.' That's something that I want to get with my car. I want to get that feel underneath me in the Miller Lite Dodge. He cut and bobbed and weaved and he was gone. That's hard to beat."

CAN YOU TALK ABOUT THE NEW ENGINE THAT YOU HAD IN THE 2 CAR TONIGHT? "It's great to be able to throw some R&D...research and out program right now. We feel like we've been struggling with power. This has been a good addition for us. Can we stand some more? Of course. We always want more.

The way that the engine runs, it seems to run cooler on water temperature, warmer on oil. Durability is defined by every race that we've run with the car. So the more that we get underneath it, the better that we'll be. I'm just a guy that works as quickly as I can with getting stuff into the car and trying it out. I don't think that we would mind if we finished 13th of 34th in points....35th, we're just out here trying to find something that's going to make our Miller Lite Dodge fast, make Dodge proud and give all of our sponsors that warm and fuzzy feeling over the off season."


YOU SAID OVER THE RADIO THAT YOU GOT BEAT BY A BETTER ORGANIZATION. WHAT DOES PENSKE HAVE TO DO TO CATCH UP? "I feel like it's been the same problem that we've had for 35 races this year and that's the front end doesn't respond to the steering wheel that I'm holding. I feel like we're just tight; most of the time it's in the center of the corner. There are times when it's on entry and there are times when it's on (corner) exit. I've got the thing so sideways most of the time, that's when the front end is chattering. That's what we have to work on, getting our front end to turn. I've said it all along, there's plenty of things that we can work on the car to make it better. I see all those changes made to the new Nationwide car -- the front splitter is raised up. The front end is raised up. They're not running on bump rubbers. They've got a rear spoiler back on the car. All the major components that's wrong with the COT have been addressed on the new Nationwide cars. That's what I would vote for, but it sounds like we're not getting any changes. It sounds like testing is still up in the air and it could go down to hardly any testing due to the economy. That will make it tough to catch the competition."


Kasey Kahne (No. 9 Budweiser Dodge Charger) Finished 13th

"We had a really good racecar until the 44 got into me. This was probably the best Budweiser Dodge that we've had here in a while. The car turned good all night and really drove off the corners well. I think we had a top-10 racecar if the 44 didn't get into me and crunch in my right front. One minute I'm racing great and the next minute I'm in the wall. I bent something in the right front and from then on, the car just wouldn't turn like we needed it to. After that (incident with 44) I was just trying to hold track position and get a top-15 finish."


AJ Allmendinger (No. 10 McDonalds Dodge Charger) Finished 16th

"Our McDonald's Dodge Charger was pretty good tonight. We heat-sided the tires and the tires seemed to go away and we just couldn't get the speed back after that, so our restarts were really bad. Even on new tires, when we took off it took a few laps to get up to speed. After that, the car was pretty good."

ON THE INCIDENT WITH THE 17 AND 20: "It was my fault. I feel bad for getting into Matt (Kenseth) who got into Tony (Stewart). You just can't go three wide in that position and I needed to be a little bit more patient in that situation."


Juan Pablo Montoya (No. 42 Texaco/Havoline Dodge Charger) Finished 17th

"I think that we had a better cat than where we finished. We just weren't very good on short runs and that's how the race ended......on a bunch of short runs."


Kyle Petty (No. 45 Wells Fargo Dodge Charger) Finished 39th

WHAT HAPPENED? "I don't know. Obviously I had my head up my butt because I ran all over the back of Sterling (Marlin) and I hate that. I guess that I wasn't paying attention. They started to wreck and before I realized it, I was in the back of Sterling. I knocked him around and then I got up in the wall; that was all my fault. I don't know what happened. This is a typical deal. There were multiple wrecks. There's a wreck that starts it and a wrecks from everyone trying to avoid it. And then there are people like me that wrecks just because I'm an idiot. It happened. I didn't see it happen quick enough. I got into the back of Sterling and spun around and got into the wall. That pretty much knocked us out."

-credit: dodge motorsports

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Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Juan Pablo Montoya