RICKY CRAVEN, NO. 32 TIDE PONTIAC GRAND PRIX: "It was a good race for us. It's only the second race for the new Pontiac. I was encouraged with what we had at Daytona and we backed it up here today. I'm proud of my new crew chief and new...
RICKY CRAVEN, NO. 32 TIDE PONTIAC GRAND PRIX:
"It was a good race for us. It's only the second race for the new Pontiac. I was encouraged with what we had at Daytona and we backed it up here today. I'm proud of my new crew chief and new engineer, and extremely proud of the same old guys that are with me for the third year. They did a great job on pit road.
"We were set up for the short run. We've gotten beat here on the short run. And, today we got beat on a long run, so we came up a little short. But, it was a good effort."
DID YOU MAKE A LOT OF ADJUSTMENTS TODAY? "We adjusted every single stop. I was never happy with it, but we didn't win. We needed a little extra and we never really found it. We got better on the short run, but we never got better on the long run. But, I'm sure we'll fix that when we come back in the fall."
JIMMIE JOHNSON, NO. 48 LOWE'S CHEVROLET MONTE CARLO:
"We chipped away all day long. We had a bad qualifying effort, but we just rallied back and got ourselves into the top 10. We'll take this and go on to Vegas."
ON POSTING HIS BEST WINSTON CUP FINISH EVER AT ROCKINGHAM "This place has haunted me, throughout my Busch career and during the start of my Winston Cup career. We've always been strong in the Cup car here, but have just never brought home the finish to go with it. Today we did and we'll build on it when we get back here in the fall."
JOHNNY BENSON, NO. 10 VALVOLINE PONTIAC GRAND PRIX:
"That was a pretty bad day for us. We struggled most of the day. But for whatever reason, the rear brakes never seated in. I don't understand why. As a matter of fact, James [Ince] grabbed hold of the rotors after the race and said, 'Man, I can just hang on to them,' while the front pads are into the backing plates. The rears never touched.
"We spent the whole time trying to adjust the car to it and it was very difficult to do.
"All in all, we ended up OK, but definitely not where we wanted to and not where we're capable of finishing here."
MIKE SKINNER, NO. 4 KODAK PONTIAC GRAND PRIX:
"The car drove good. It was competitive. It felt like it was a top 10 car. I'll tell you - it really, really feels good to be able to pass people. This time last year we couldn't pass anybody. We passed a lot of cars today and raced a lot of really good cars with a lot more resources than we've got. I'm proud of the team, but I really think they struggled on pit road today. I really don't know exactly what all happened, but maybe just lost a little focus on pit road.
"It's a tough place. We started that last restart there and, I'm telling you, that thing would haul butt. It was going. I knew I had to get all the track position I could get because it was going to be loose. It just got so loose I couldn't hold on to it, but it sure felt good to have a competitive race car."
ROBBY GORDON, NO. 31 CINGULAR CHEVROLET MONTE CARLO:
"Rockingham was tough on the No. 31 Cingular Wireless team. We were loose in qualifying for the first time in a long time with this new car and thought everything would be good when we pulled the tape off in race trim. But, we didn't get any race practice and soon realized the shocks were all wrong. I was bouncing and sliding everywhere.
"The guys worked hard each pit stop with chassis adjustments and we slowly got a better handling car, but had already lost one lap. We were pretty good the second half of the race, but just couldn't get in the position to get that lap back. There wasn't anywhere for us to go."
MICHAEL WALTRIP, NO. 15 NAPA CHEVROLET MONTE CARLO:
"We just didn't have a very good day. The DEI cars looked about the opposite of what we looked at Daytona. We're just missing something here. But, I think we'll be good next week. As a team, all our cars ran good at Daytona for a reason - that's because they're a lot alike and they're good. Here, they seem to all run alike for some reason. We've just got to figure out what that reason is."
JEFF GORDON, NO. 24 DUPONT CHEVROLET MONTE CARLO:
ON THE DAY OVERALL "It was definitely a fight. It was one of those days where we were gaining on it each time. We had great pit stops. The guys were awesome in the pits. We were just slowly, but surely, making our way up there. But, you just can't get that far and then have that (a spin) happen. It was unfortunate that it happened, but it was kind of out of our control. When we got back there (in the field) - we had a good car, but we didn't have a car that was capable of just driving right up through everybody."
WHAT HAPPENED IN THE INCIDENT WITH DALE EARNHARDT, JR., WHEN YOU SPUN? "He was racing on the outside hard, got loose and checked up. I was right behind him and I hit him. Then, Jamie McMurray ran in the back of me and spun me. It was just a domino effect. There was nothing anybody could have really done."
BOBBY LABONTE, NO. 18 INTERSTATE BATTERIES CHEVROLET MONTE CARLO:
ON GAMBLING ON STAYING OUT WHEN EVERYONE ELSE TOOK TIRES "The choice was really pretty good, on 'Fatback's' (crew chief Michael McSwain) idea to stay out. We were dead last and we hadn't passed anybody the 10 laps prior to that. We thought the come out (before the end of the race). Who would have thought we would go 98 laps there at the end under green? But, that's just the way it goes. If the caution would have come out we would have been looking pretty good, but it didn't. The guys did a really good job and had great pit stops all day. We had a tire go down. I caught it - it was down about 10 pounds. I knew something was wrong. We came back and got to the top five, but it came back to that tire deal early on where it got us out of sequence. It was just one little thing like that that got us behind."