ELLIOTT SADLER --21-- Motorcraft Taurus (Finished 34th) "I just got a little loose. It was looser than I thought it was gonna be. I was just kind of stuck on the inside and got in the gas too hard. It was 100 percent my fault. It's a tough...
ELLIOTT SADLER --21-- Motorcraft Taurus (Finished 34th)
"I just got a little loose. It was looser than I thought it was gonna be. I was just kind of stuck on the inside and got in the gas too hard. It was 100 percent my fault. It's a tough break, but we'll just try to get it fixed and get the Motorcraft Ford Taurus back out there and get some points."
DID YOU FEEL ANYTHING LIKE OIL ON THE TRACK DURING THE PACE LAPS? "Yeah, you can see it. It's a brown stripe all the way around the race track. I might have got my right-rear in it and it came around because it definitely came around in a hurry. It's a shame. I'm not gonna blame it on that because I was the only one that spun out on the bottom, but I don't think the track was ready to go green."
JEFF BURTON --99-- Citgo Taurus (Finished 39th)
WHAT HAPPENED? "I don't really know to be quite honest. I got in the corner there and, I don't know if somebody got into me. I don't know. It just went around really fast and backed in the wall real hard. Sterling hit really hard. I turned around and I saw him hit head-on, but he seems like he's OK. He's pretty sore, but I think everybody's OK. That's the main thing."
THIS IS THREE WEEKS IN A ROW YOU'VE HAD SOME BAD LUCK. "That's the way things go. You go through periods where everything goes well and you go through periods where they don't go well at all. It's unfortunate. It's a short night."
WHAT HAPPENED AGAIN? "I really don't know. I drove in the corner there. My car really felt good the few laps before and I drove in the corner, I don't think anybody hit me or anything. I think it just got around on me and I backed into the corner really hard."
THERE'S BEEN SOME COMPLAINING ABOUT THE BOTTOM GROOVE AND MAYBE SOME OIL BEING DOWN THERE. DID YOU FEEL ANYTHING? "I'm not gonna blame anything on that. I got in the corner and the next thing I know I was going backwards, but I don't know why that is. Like I said, I don't think anybody got into me. I didn't feel anybody get into me and I don't think anybody was close enough to get into me. It just went around really fast. It's unfortunate because the car drove really nice. It's hard to tell with that many laps. It's just a short night."
ROBBIE REISER, Crew Chief --17-- DEWALT Power Tools Taurus
"I tell you what. This is a great race team. I'm not the smartest guy in the world. I probably almost killed Matt tonight with an air-pressure problem, but that was a great job by this race team and a great job by Matt. This whole race team deserves this. I don't deserve it for what we did to ourselves, but it was a great run."
RYAN NEWMAN --12-- ALLTEL Taurus (Finished 2nd)
"You know, it was an awesome run all day for the ALLTEL Ford. The guys did a good job in the pits. We came out the first couple of times in first and that was important. I got a little tight there on that last run and when Matt got by me I could hold my own, but I couldn't catch him. I just kept getting tighter and tighter and he pulled away. Congratulations to those guys. They did an awesome job coming back from what they had started in the race."
DID THE TRACK CHANGE MUCH? "We had to adjust on the car a little bit, but I don't think it changed a whole lot. I know the sealer wore off quite a bit, but it looked like the track had a couple grooves to work with. I was about equally as fast on the high side as I was the low side. I kept moving all over."
TODD BODINE --26-- Discover Card Taurus (Finished 5th)
"It was a great run for the Discover Card Ford. We started off getting spun out there early with Terry. I don't know if the spotter didn't say I was there or what, but that's racin' at Richmond. We had to come from behind and Donnie (Wingo) and the guys did a great job. Donnie made all the right calls and all the right changes. Right there at the end he kept saying, 'Pedal it, pedal it. We need the gas mileage' and I ran out at the start-finish line so it was real close. It was a great job for all the guys. It's the best run I've ever had at Richmond and the best car I've ever had at Richmond, so we're excited about it."
MATT KENSETH --17-- DEWALT Power Tools Taurus
VICTORY LANE INTERVIEW -- WAS THE DIFFERENCE BEING IN THE RIGHT PIT SEQUENCE? "I don't know. The right thing was to be up front at the end, I guess. We tried to pit with the leaders after that. We had such a fast car and we kept getting flat right-front tires and I was real concerned about that, but everybody on this DEWALT/AT&T crew did a great job tonight. They gave me great pit stops and they had us out there when we needed to be."
HOW ABOUT THE LAP TRAFFIC AT THE END? "It was just such a fast car. The car was really fast. All these guys built this car brand new a few weeks ago for a short track car and it was just really fast the whole time we've been here. It would work high and it would work low. Before a lot of the guys got to the high line, I went up there pretty early and I was able to pass a lot of guys and put 'em away early before a lot of people realized how good the high groove was and that seemed to help quite a bit."
YOU GOT GOOD GRIP OFF OF TWO. "Yeah, the car was flying around turn one and two. That was our strong point is driving off the corner. The thing would roll through the center real fast too, so it's pretty fun to have a short track car that is that fast."
WERE YOU CONCERNED ABOUT FUEL? "I wasn't too worried about it. Robbie hasn't run me out. Russ has run me out in the Busch car, but Robbie never ran me out yet in the Winston Cup car, so we've been pretty conservative the last few weeks. When they told me I was within five laps, I felt like I was conserving anyway running around the bottom of the track and letting off the gas early, so I wasn't real worried about the fuel, I was more worried about the tire."
YOU WENT FROM THE LOWEST TO THE HIGHEST. "That was pretty cool. Both times we've been here we had to battle back, but we've had great cars and they're a lot of fun to drive."
MARK MARTIN --6-- Viagra Taurus (Finished 6th)
"We had a really great race car tonight, it just got away from us there for a little while. We lost a little on our setup as the night went on, but it was a strong run overall. We ran great for 300 laps, but we kind of tailed off in the end. Still, we came out and try hard every week and just see where we end up. There's nothing wrong with a sixth-place finish, but I just wish we'd finished as strong as we ran all weekend and for the first 300 laps."
RUSTY WALLACE --2-- Miller Lite Taurus (Finished 15th)
DO YOU BELIEVE THAT LUCK? "No, I don't believe it. Man, it's sickening. Early in the race I had a right-front go down, so I put some more air back in the tire and ran. Then we'd just get out and I was fighting like hell trying to get past those guys and finally got past everybody. I was trying to run Kenseth down and win that race, get that million and, son of a gun, if it doesn't go down again. I felt it about four laps before and I said, 'Oh God, don't let this be again,' and, sure enough, it went down. It's just sickening, man. I tell you what, I thought it was gonna be a second place for sure and never believed we were gonna lose a tire."
AT LEAST YOU GAINED SOME POINTS ON STERLING. "Yeah, we gained points on Sterling and Gordon and tightened the points race up a little bit, but, man, it could have been a lot better than that."
RICKY RUDD --28-- Havoline Taurus (Finished 7th)
"We tried to stretch it at the end and ran out of gas. We had a top three or four car and we just ended up seventh. I don't think we had a whole lot of choices there at the end. If you pitted, you were gonna get really screwed because some of the guys were gonna make it and you would have gotten out of sync. It was the right call, we just didn't make it. We ran OK. We just got beat really bad off the corners all night long."
DAVE BLANEY --77-- Jasper Engines Taurus (Finished 9th)
"We just struggled most of the night. We were actually pretty good the first quarter of the race and stayed pretty consistent. We could kind of hang there with them, but I just kept getting tighter and tighter and we couldn't get it free enough. We got caught on that pit stop deal one time and got a lap down. It took us a while to get it back, but still, at the end, we weren't very good. We just made it on fuel. I was running around there half-throttle for the last 10 laps and made it."