Talladega: Winning team press conference, part 1

An Interview With: KYLE BUSCH JOE GIBBS JD GIBBS STEVE ADDINGTON THE MODERATOR: We are pleased to be joined by our championship team, No. 18 M&M's Joe Gibbs Racing goes to victory lane winning the Dream's Come True at Aaron's 499 at Talladega,...

An Interview With:

THE MODERATOR: We are pleased to be joined by our championship team, No. 18 M&M's Joe Gibbs Racing goes to victory lane winning the Dream's Come True at Aaron's 499 at Talladega, driver is Kyle Busch, team owner is Job Gibbs, JD Gibbs, and the crew chief is Steve Addington.

Congratulations, and you put on a great, great show out there today and super race for everyone.

Kyle, take us through the race, your thoughts now, you've won on a Super Speedway and last week you won at a road course, intermediate track, short track; you're hitting them all now.

Congratulations, and your thoughts on winning at Talladega.

KYLE BUSCH: Thank you, good win for us today. Proud of the fact we were able to win with Joe Gibbs Racing and M&M's and Snickers and Home Depot and Interstate, Toyota, all helped support this race team.

And for us there in the beginning part of the race, we were running along and trying to come out pit road there and having guys on the inside and behind me so this is my fifth stall and had come back around the next time and get the pit stop done there, and so had to walk a lap. Fortunately we were in the right position at the right time and got the lucky draw and were able to come in from there and get back on the lead lap and come back to the field.

About ten to go, things got crazy so really my memory is a little scratchy, but getting through there was problematic speaker system I was running fourth or fifth and got a bump draft and got a huge line, shot me on the line and got into McMurray there. And I don't know what happened with that scenario and we were able to straighten up and get going, 42 was myself, pushed me all the way to the front. Montoya, gave me a great shock, got us both up to the front two spots and rode up there and stayed together.

And then 55 and 48 did the same thing, had a caution come out, and on that restart we shifted the 55 out and I think Gordon got in behind me somehow, and Jeff was pushing me and we bump drafted Jimmie out of the way off of 4, and I got out underneath him and Jeff pushed me past the 48, and that was cool and we got the 24 shut out of line by the 42 again and it was the 18 and 42 there at the end and the 11 and so that was pretty cool.

THE MODERATOR: Steve, what did you see you up on the pit box today? You called a great race. Your thoughts?

STEVE ADDINGTON: I'm really proud of him being patient, you know, when we got the last we got behind Tony, we were a lap down, if we could just hang in there, we had a good enough car there, if we could get our caution and he was so patient when we got there in the back of the pack it and took his time coming up through there. So it wasn't that bad (indiscernible) between him and the spotter when the car is on the racetrack. So let them do their thing and try to just let stay off the radio and keep the clear channels in between.

THE MODERATOR: Your thoughts going into victory lane with the 18 team?

JOE GIBBS: When you have a race team like that you have three cars, and it's almost like the emotions are all over the place. First, you're down there and you're upset because Kyle and everything that happened on pit road and he winds up a lap down; and you have Tony leading the race and all of a sudden Tony cuts a tire down and you've got Denny looks real strong and all of a sudden he gets shuffled all over the place. And so for me, it's just emotions are all over the place and of course at that point, now mid race, you figure there's no way Kyle is going to have a chance to win it and so I was really proud of our whole team, as Kyle said it was a total team effort. Steve did a great job. Everybody on pit road did a great job. Staying that calm and cool and find a way to fight his way back just got to say it was a great day for us and I'm really proud of the guys.

THE MODERATOR: JD, anything to add?

JD GIBBS: For us, we people don't really how much time and effort goes into preparing speed way cars and there's so many times like Daytona we had great equipment, great cars you don't windup winning and to be able to capitalize yesterday and then today I think was really encouraging for everybody at Joe Gibbs Racing and our who whole team.

THE MODERATOR: Something of note, this is Kyle's 7th NASCAR victory this season, spread over three series. And in the Truck Series he's won in California and Atlanta, the Nationwide Series he's won at Texas Phoenix, Mexico City, and in the Sprint Cup Series he's won in Atlanta, Talladega. So he's touched them all for intermediate short track Super Speedway road course.

Q: This has been a track where everything possibly that could go wrong for you has gone wrong and today in many ways after that everything went right is that a product that everything is going right for you all season or is it all of the above?

KYLE BUSCH: I'd like to say I'm smarter than I look but that's certainly not the case.

You know today was just due to having a great car, Mark and all those guys at the shop did an awesome job building a great Toyota engine today and in order to power us up through there through the field when we were getting bumped and banged all over the place; but getting a lap down, yeah, that was like typical Talladega there, and I didn't wreck today, so I am ultimately happy about that.

Greatly appreciative that I was able to win today because it's just been a struggle here at this place for certainly a couple years, and I don't think I've ever finished one here yet without having some sort of damage.

Today we still had damage but it wasn't enough to keep us from victory lane.

Q: The ability to push around, was that something you discovered this weekend; or the fact that the bumpers match and the new surface, and also, Steve, did it make the cars so much faster at times, I know the cars had chips in them, was there concern over motor or engine damage?

KYLE BUSCH: For the drafting around here we figured that out with the new asphalt when it was laid, when the old cars we could bump draft each other through the corners, the old cars we lined up on in the restrictor plate tracks the high ends were (indiscernible) with the bodies on those cars. And with these cars, they are the same way, the rear bumpers are high and front bumpers are low, and so we are able to bump draft all the way through the corner, built so much speed all the way around this place, and NASCAR doesn't like it. But when you have two guys that know what they are doing and keep their car straight and you don't hit somebody too hard and just sit on them nicely, it really works and you can use it to your advantage really well.

Denny was doing it a lot today and I felt comfortable with it.

Q: When you guys went after Kyle, you knew he was a good driver but this start to the season is pretty unbelievable why some drivers when they come in it takes them time to get up to speed; what's going on here that he's just so red hot?

JOE GIBBS: There's no pat answer for it. For us the first time (indiscernible) so when we tested Atlanta in the fall you realize we had something really personal there.

You could see if in Steve's eyes and those guys and each of our teams has a really good group of guys. The A Team has not shown the last few years, but now Kyle filling that hole there and having Steve and those guys working together and Mark on the motor side, I just think there's a lot of things that really fit in that package. And first and foremost, you have to have that guy behind the wheel, and he just has a natural talent for it.

So I think we're blessed to be a part of that and see it. And the thing is you forget how young he is and how many years we have left to grow together and winning races at championships, really is encouraging. He's got at least five before he retires to an island.

Q: Can you talk about how you did save it when you got into it with McMurray and Hamlin is talking how great the package is with his new car, wondering if you like it now?

KYLE BUSCH: The save, I mean, I didn't know what was happening.

All I remember was I got knocked out of line first to begin with and then looked up in my mirror to see who I had behind me then. And I think it was Juan, a couple car lengths back, and I don't know if McMurray was looking at his car trying to get in front of the 42, but we made contact and I thought I was going out of the park.

I thought I was getting hooked right rear and going great up on the fence and luckily somehow we got off each other and we kept it straight and we were able to continue on and Montoya got behind me and forced up the lead and so that was cool.

As far as the package of this car, I think it's just the product of the car.

I wouldn't say it's great, but when the cars get side by side they get stuck, so it takes a lot more help and a lot more bump drafting to get through people and to get more racing going on, because I don't know if it's because they punched us a big hole in the air or what, but you know when you pull out on someone, you just stall, like you crept up alongside of them at least get half the length going and at least get somebody behind you to get that length past like the old car. But it's just a product of the way this car is so everybody has to learn what to do and how to race it and how to use it to their advantage.

Q: People have to be envious of your position after last year

KYLE BUSCH: Well, I am fortunate to be hooked up with this bunch, with Joe and JD and Steve Addington leading the calls on the box did a great job today as always and luckily we were able to get up in the lap back there.

But it's special to have the results so far this year. And the amount of crew chiefs I've worked with this year and over the years, I think just becoming more in tune with everybody and telling them what's in my race car. When we unloaded this weekend and the car was good and wasn't great, and I told Addington what I wanted and what we needed to try to work on to make it better and we did it. I think we made it better and wasn't as good as it needed to be and it wasn't as good as the 20 but it was a good enough car that when you put it in the right position today, we were able to win with it.

Continued in part 2

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Kyle Busch
Teams Joe Gibbs Racing