RYAN NEWMAN (No. 12 ALLTEL Dodge Intrepid) - Wins 11th pole of the season, 18th career pole in 79 starts. "This is a good racecar. It's done a lot of great things for us this year, and the guys have done a great job. I'm just the guy who gets to...
RYAN NEWMAN (No. 12 ALLTEL Dodge Intrepid) - Wins 11th pole of the season, 18th career pole in 79 starts.
"This is a good racecar. It's done a lot of great things for us this year, and the guys have done a great job. I'm just the guy who gets to sit behind the wheel and steer it. To me winning 11 poles in a season means a lot from a driver's standpoint. It ties second for all-time most poles in a season. To me, that's a great feat. There's definitely a lot of great drivers in that category.
"He (Brian Vickers) is doing a great job. I told everybody that last week in the media center. He's obviously a talented young individual who's doing great things. Their team is working good together. They've had a great opportunity to do a lot of testing. I think that's definitely paid off.
"To me it is what it is. We can't manipulate the point system in any way. We've had our failures this year, and that's taken a lot of points away from us or however you want to word it. To me to be a Winston Cup champion you've got to have everything.
"Qualifying to me is no different than the race itself. I can wheel the car, and I do a good job doing it. The guys do a good job setting up the car. We've got to have a good engine. You put it all together and you get great results. I think that's what it's all about. It's not just me and Matt (crew chief Borland). It's everybody on the team.
"I didn't watch (qualifying). Brian had a great lap, but ours was good enough.
"It's not just Bill Elliott. It's Darrell Waltrip and maybe Pearson or Bobby Allison. It's a great honor to be in the history of Winston Cup and be second for all-time (poles in a season). It's a great effort. I'm not going to wear the jacket myself. It's the team that's given me this opportunity. That's the way I look at it. It's an honor.
"I don't think the short tracks, but I can think of three or four DNF's off the top of my head, Daytona, California, Talladega, that resulted in crashes, and they're far from short tracks. Michigan engine failure in the first race, and those four races ended up in DNF's and that turned our season around. I remember saying engine failures last year resulted in DNF's and I sat up here last year saying shoulda, woulda, coulda, too.
"We're here to win races and beat the competition. Beating the competition could mean two different things. It could mean winning on Sunday or getting the most points for the Winston Cup championship. It's all how you look at it."