MARK MARTIN - No. 6 Viagra Taurus (Finished 41st) "We just kind of got bumped around there going into the tunnel (turn). Junior ran into me and we slowed up a little bit. Then I think Michael (Waltrip) might have run into the back of me...
MARK MARTIN - No. 6 Viagra Taurus (Finished 41st)
"We just kind of got bumped around there going into the tunnel (turn). Junior ran into me and we slowed up a little bit. Then I think Michael (Waltrip) might have run into the back of me because he sent apologies, so I don't know. We kind of got run over there. It's tight quarters going into that corner there at the tunnel and real last-minute moves like Junior made usually causes trouble."
RICKY RUDD - No. 21 Motorcraft Taurus (Finished 39th)
"It wasn't pretty today. We were gonna hang around and end up pretty decent. We never did put two tires on our car. A lot of guys did and they got track position. We were sort of waiting until the end of the race because it worked out good for us last week at New Hampshire to wait for the last stop when we could put on just two. We were getting to that point and, all of a sudden, the oil pump belt came off which caused the motor to lose oil pressure and it shook real violently. We're real lucky it didn't scatter all over the race track."
IT'S A DISAPPOINTING FINISH, BUT STILL A NEAT WEEKEND. "Yeah, it was a neat weekend, I just wish the outcome would have turned out a little bit different and it would be something we'd remember 700 by. We'll remember it, but not in real super-positive way just because we didn't finish today."
KURT BUSCH - No. 97 Rubbermaid Taurus (Finished 2nd)
WHAT WAS THE DIFFERENCE AT THE END? "The difference today was turn three. A lot of teams set up for different corners. I whooped his butt in turn one, we were equal in two and he got me out of three, so he was just able to get down the long straightaway better than us. We could have had a bad day out of what we had happen with our right-front control arm, but we kept digging and my crew chief gave me the fuel mileage I needed to finish second."
WERE YOU CONCERNED IN THE MIDDLE STAGES WHEN YOU WERE HAVING PROBLEMS? "I noticed everybody pitted right after we came back out with our problem, so we could have been 36th but yet we were 16th. It was camoflauged by everybody pitting, so it worked out great."
JEFF BURTON - No. 99 CITGO Taurus (Finished 6th)
WOULD YOU SAY THIS WAS YOUR BEST RACE OF THE YEAR? "Last week and this week were good. Richmond was good and Martinsville was good, but we're starting to put a string of them together. We just don't have any luck. We had a great race car. At times we were the best car and at times we weren't, but we were never worse than a fourth or fifth-place car. I'm proud of that. We've just got to get some stuff going our way and, if we do, we can get in victory lane."
YOU HAD TO COME IN AND TOP OFF? "With the way it worked out we might have been able to with the cautions, but how do you know the caution is gonna come out? Some of those guys that stayed out, they wouldn't have made it without those cautions. They had some luck with them and we didn't."
MATT KENSETH - No. 17 DEWALT Power Tools Taurus (Finished 13th)
THE FOUR-TIRE CALL AT THE END, WAS THAT THE RIGHT CALL? "Well, that was but the one to pit probably wasn't. When we came down and got fuel there was only three of us on pit road, so, I don't know, we've been a little conservative on the gas mileage thing. We had a second or third-place car and finished 13th with it. You just can't do that. You give away too many points. When you play conservative, that's when you get bit. They said that's all the fuel we had, but, I don't know, everybody else made it and got some cautions so we need to look that over. There was only three or four of us that had to pit that time. If it's half or three-quarters of the field, then you can live with it, but when you're one of only three or four cars to pit, you've got something wrong and you've got to figure out what it is."
YOU DID GAIN ON THE 24 TODAY. "Yeah, but I'm not even that worried about it. You take a third-place car and finish 13th with it, I'm just mad. I don't care where everybody else finishes. I feel like we're running good enough to beat those guys and finish in front of them. The 8 got real lucky on that one long green, but then they did a real good job with their pit strategy to get their car up front. I think we had a better car than he did today and a little bit better than the 97 and he ran second, so it's just real disappointing."
DAVE BLANEY - No. 77 Jasper Engines Taurus (Finished 9th)
YOU HAD TO SWITCH IGNITION BOXES IN THE MIDDLE OF THE RACE. THAT WAS OBVIOUSLY A CONCERN AT THAT POINT. "Yeah, it just shut off. We've been having trouble with jumping out of gear all week and I thought that's what it was. Then I thought I stalled the motor and it just took me a long time before I figured out it was an ignition box. But then we got a yellow 15 or 20 laps later, so we got caught up. Bootie made some good calls today and kept us with pretty good track position with two tires a lot when we didn't have the car working that good. At the end we were going better, so it was a solid day. He did a good job."
YOU'VE BEEN LOOKING FOR A DAY LIKE THIS. "We brought our car that's been doing well this year. We brought that and I think we're gonna just take it every week. If we don't wreck it, we'll take it every week. It was solid. Bootie made good calls and got the car better and better all day, so it was good."
GREG BIFFLE - No. 16 Grainger Taurus (Finished 27th)
WHAT HAPPENED AT THE END? "Spencer ran into my left-rear quarter coming off turn three and cut my tire down. We were up-and-down. We got some track position there and weren't quite getting the fuel mileage the other guys were. I guess it was a decent day overall, but I'm pretty frustrated about cutting a tire down at the end."
ELLIOTT SADLER - No. 38 M&M's Taurus (Finished 14th)
"We had a pan under the duct work in the front of the car come loose for the first two green-flag runs. We finally figured out what happened and lost a whole bunch of track position bringing the car in to tape it up. That pan made us so loose it was tlike the tires were on the wrong side of the car. So then we went back to what we started with and the car tightened up as the track tightened up with the clouds. We just couldn't dig out of that hole. For the last part of the race we were so tight the nose of the car just plowed through the corners. I had no grip whatsoever. I'm just looking forward to Indy."
TODD BODINE - No. 54 National Guard Taurus (Finished 8th)
"I was thinking, 'Don't let there be a caution,' because we were pulling away from the guys behind us and running the guys down in front of us. I knew I could hold my own and get a good finish. When the caution came out, Gary (crew chief Gary Cogswell) said, 'Don't worry about it, you're faster than those guys behind you. You're just as good as those guys in front of you and maybe better.' We'll take what we can get. We didn't have the best car, but we had a good car. We worked on it all day and got it good and used a little strategy and got a top 10 out of it."
HOW WAS THE CAR DURING THE RACE? "It was tight in the middle and loose off. We fought that in practice a little bit. We knew which direction to go. We just had to have pit stops to do it. Once we got going in that direction the car got going pretty good to where I could get up off the corner good. It was still a little tight in the middle. But the key here is getting off the corners good. With long straightaways you've got to get off the corners."
THIS IS YOUR FIRST TOP 10. "It's about time. It's not a key or a momentum booster. It's just what you're supposed to do every week. We've got a team that can do it. We've just got to get a little more consistent. We're missing it a little bit in the chassis. We've just got to get better, and today's a step in that direction."