FORD CAPTURES HALF OF THE NEXTEL CUP CHASE FIELD * Despite having the fewest numbers of full-time teams among manufacturers (eight), Ford has the most qualifiers as five Tauruses qualified for the final 10-race Chase for the Nextel...
FORD CAPTURES HALF OF THE NEXTEL CUP CHASE FIELD
* Despite having the fewest numbers of full-time teams among manufacturers (eight), Ford has the most qualifiers as five Tauruses qualified for the final 10-race Chase for the Nextel Cup.
* All five of the Roush Racing Fords owned by Jack Roush made the field as Greg Biffle, Mark Martin, Kurt Busch, Carl Edwards and Matt Kenseth all finished in the Top 10.
* Five cars is the most for a single manufacturer in two years of the chase format. Last season there were four Fords, four Chevrolets and two Dodges in the 10-car field.
* Martin, Busch and Kenseth are repeat visitors to the Cup chase while Biffle and Edwards are newcomers.
* Busch will be looking to win the Cup for a second straight time.
BUSCH BACK IN VICTORY LANE
* Kurt Busch won for the third time this season and first time at Richmond International Raceway.
* The win was Busch's 14th in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series.
* Today's win is the 11th of the season for Ford, which is one more than last year.
* Ford has 565 all-time NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series wins.
* The last time Ford swept the top three spots was Aug. 22, 2004 at Michigan when Greg Biffle won the GFS Marketplace 300. Mark Martin was second and Dale Jarrett was third.
* The last time Roush Racing finished one-two in a NNC race was Sept. 19, 2004 at Loudon when Kurt Busch won and Matt Kenseth finished second.
* This marks the first time Roush Racing has swept the top three spots in a Cup event.
DALE JARRETT - No. 88 UPS Taurus (Finished 39th)
"We had a good race car, but lap traffic was pretty tough. There was prime real estate and everybody was trying to get to the same spot. It's unfortunate. That's one of the better runs we've had. I was happy. We made some good adjustments with our car, but it's another bad night at the end."
WHAT HAPPENED WITH THE INCIDENT? "I was up beside the 37. It was a lapped car and he ran me down on the apron and it's kind of hard to steer down there."
NOW YOU DON'T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT THE CHASE THE LAST 10 RACES. "We'd like to be a part of it, but we'll see if we can get this UPS Ford in Victory Lane."
KURT BUSCH - No. 97 Crown Royal Taurus - VICTORY LANE
"This is something we've been looking forward to for many races - Richmond. We wanted get a good finish because it's bit us so many times. I've respected this place because it's tough to win and we've had everything go wrong to take our chances away, but tonight there were just great pit stops - smooth on the gas, smooth on the brakes. With the way we've been running this year on short tracks, this finally gets us a win on all the short tracks. It's a great feeling and just an awesome run for the Crown Royal Ford."
BUSCH BROTHERS HAVE WON BACK-TO-BACK. WHAT ABOUT GRANDMA? "I love grandma. She's our number one supporter. This whole group and just the way we're able to stick together, obviously, through all the things that are going on right now. I'm just happy that we're able to push forward. I've got a great group of guys. This is a great momentum run now to go into the chase. Just to run every week with these motors that Yates built us and this group of guys - all of our associate sponsors. This weekend we had something special on the hood with Crown Royal Relief. It's not a hangover thing, it's special relief for the hurricane victims. I'm gonna take all my money from this win and have it go towards the chopper that they're trying to raffle off."
IS IT A STATEMENT? "It is in some ways, yes. In other ways, we're just racing our cars to the best of our ability. This is the B car for next week. We've saved our stuff just like we did last year. It's gonna be a busy September and October with all of our testing. Look out, Kurt Busch is running. We're having a great time. The souvenir sales are 50 percent off, I'm gonna give 50 percent of my souvenir sales to the victims as well, so we're just going and giving everything away that we can and we'll see what we can do for the championship."
GREG BIFFLE - No. 16 National Guard/Subway Taurus (Finished 3rd)
"It was a great run. I tell you what, it was spectacular. I wouldn't say it's not one of our best race tracks, but this isn't our strongest race track and to come here and finish third, I don't know what to say. The Ford Taurus National Guard car, the guys did a great job in the pits. One tire got away on us, so we had to come from the middle of the pack, but the car drove right up through there. The brakes ran great all night. Everything just worked perfect. I couldn't be happier. Congratulations to Kurt and Matt for making the chase. It's a good night for us overall."
ON ROUSH'S 1-2-3 FINISH. "That's pretty incredible. I mean, we share information really well together - all these teams do - and we give each other racing room. It's fun to race with Matt and these guys. Man, it's just unbelievable that our cars run this good. This is the way we were running in Phoenix when we got that bumper bar through the radiator. It just shows how strong our teams are and how strong we're gonna be through the end of the chase."
HOW DO YOU FEEL GOING INTO THE CHASE? "Awesome. I think that before tonight I felt like we were the team to beat and I still do. We've got so much momentum. Our cars are running so fast. I really feel like we're gonna be one of the teams to beat."
MATT KENSETH - No. 17 DeWalt Taurus (Finished 2nd)
"I'm relieved, but more than relieved I'm excited. I'm excited for this whole DeWalt team. They did such a great job on pit road. They're the reason why we're here. We were way behind here a few months ago and they just kept digging and giving me better race cars. They were just killing everybody on pit road. It was awesome on pit road and they put us in position. I'm real excited because I feel like we've got some momentum. We're running really well. We didn't just sneak in. We still ran second tonight and had a good run. I really think that we can be a threat down the stretch. There are a couple of tracks that probably aren't great tracks for us, but I think we can be a legitimate threat for it."
ON 1-2-3 FINISH - "It's pretty neat. I mean, you've got to enjoy it when it's our time at Roush. It really works in cycles. You have up and down days and up and down years. It goes like that for awhile and right now I'm really enjoying this. It's fun to drive these cars. I've got great teammates. They're all running good and they're all working really good together right now. It's sad to see Kurt go when he eventually goes because right now we've got a really good group that works good together and we've got good information and everybody is running well."
WOULD IT HAVE BEEN TOUGH TO TAKE IF YOU DIDN'T MAKE IT AFTER SUCH A GOOD COMEBACK? "Yes and no. It's easy to say afterwards, but coming into today I didn't have a lot of pressure. I was good however it went. I thought we had a good car if we raced really well and didn't have any problems we were gonna make it. I thought we could make it on performance. If we had some problems and didn't make it, well, that's just the way it goes. No matter what, I was gonna walk away today happy and proud of my guys because we made up three hundred and some odd points on 10th place in the last couple months and that's awesome, even if we wouldn't have made it, so either way I was gonna be real proud of the effort they put forth."
CARL EDWARDS - No. 99 Scotts Taurus (Finished 21st)
"That was nervewracking, but I did have fun racing there at the end. My car was pretty decent and I was just cruising. The middle of the race we were just tight in the center and that wasn't good. We started falling back and falling back and we went a lap down and I thought, 'Man, this is really going the wrong way.' We fought back and got our lap back. That was pretty cool and ended up running 20th or 18th, so that's fine. That works."
WHAT ABOUT THE WRECK. "Oh man, that wreck was insane there. I saw the whole deal flash before my eyes. It's pretty cool we made it through that."
THOUGHTS ON MAKING THE CHASE? "I can't believe it. I wasn't allowing myself to even think of this, really, so it's pretty cool. When I go home tomorrow it's gonna be pretty neat."
WAS IT HARD TO PROTECT A SPOT INSTEAD OF GOING ALL OUT? "Yeah, it's real hard, but that's what was necessary and that's what we did."
MARK MARTIN - No. 6 Viagra Taurus (Finished 13th)
"The car was pretty special. We did get one lucky dog, but we would have never gotten it if we didn't make a lap up on the race track against the 97 and all those guys. I'm pretty proud of the performance here tonight. I'm glad that we had this tonight. Maybe we won't have the flat tire next week. I'm real proud of the performance. I thought the car was pretty strong, especially on the long runs and we didn't make too many people mad."
NO PRESSURE EVEN WHEN THE TIRE WENT FLAT. "Yeah, the racer in you doesn't like the idea of finishing 41st, and then it got to 30th, and then it got to 23rd. But, heck, there's nothing wrong with 23rd based on what we had, but we wanted more and we could have got more if we would have had more time.'
RICKY RUDD - No. 21 Motorcraft Genuine Parts Taurus (Finished 38th)
"I got run over from behind and didn't see it coming. I didn't know what happened. The guys did a good job. At the very end they got the car tuned up a little bit. I could never get a handle on the track and then it finally did right there at the end. Everything was going good except we got run over."
ELLIOTT SADLER - No. 38 M&M's Taurus (Finished 17th)
"We had a lot of contact tonight but you know what I'm not going to hang my head. These guys behind me worked their butts off all year long but we didn't make the Chase. The world's not over with. I've got some great sponsors on this race car that believe in us whether we made it or not. I got a great car owner in Robert Yates. We've just got to try and maybe get that 11th spot but the main thing is that we need to go and win a race. I think that would be good for all the guys involved. I'm so proud of them with all the problems that we had tonight, they did not give up. We kept on fighting and kept on fighting. I'm so proud of all of these M&M'S race guys right now."