David Reutimann earned the top-finish (11th) by a Toyota Camry in Sunday's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) race at Texas Motor Speedway. Reutimann led twice for 40 laps at Texas after starting from the pole to earn Toyota's third pole of 2009...
David Reutimann earned the top-finish (11th) by a Toyota Camry in Sunday's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) race at Texas Motor Speedway.
Reutimann led twice for 40 laps at Texas after starting from the pole to earn Toyota's third pole of 2009 and 10th since entering the series in 2007.
Denny Hamlin (12th), Brian Vickers (16th) and Kyle Busch (18th) also earned top-20 results for Toyota at Texas.
Other Toyota drivers in the field included Michael Waltrip (24th), Joey Logano (30th), Max Papis (35th), Robby Gordon (39th), Marcos Ambrose (41st) and Dave Blaney (43rd).
Four Camry drivers are in the top-20 in the unofficial NSCS point standings - Hamlin (sixth), Busch (seventh), Reutimann (11th) and Vickers (19th).
DAVID REUTIMANN, No. 00 Aaron's Dream Machine Toyota Camry, Michael Waltrip Racing
Finishing Position: 11th
How was your race? "It was okay. We just had that trouble on pit road there. A car was coming out of its pit stall and we kind of had to take evasive action there. I slid it out the box which is my fault and they started changing tires before they got it back. That cost us a lap. We just spent the rest of the day trying to battle back and we were able to do that. I'm proud of my guys, they did a great job on pit road with great stops."
DENNY HAMLIN, No. 11 FedEx Ground Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing
Finishing Position: 12th
How would you assess your day? "It was a struggle. Our car was pretty good until that first green flag pit stop and I wheel hopped it real, real bad getting on pit road and just could never recover. It hurt the rear end pretty bad. Ever since then I had to never let all the way out of the gas or I was going to spin out. It's a shame for the FedEx Ground team but we salvaged something out of it. We had a broken race car I felt like and we at least finished the race and got a descent finish out of it."
What were you and your crew chief Mike Ford discussing during your race debrief? "What in the world I could have hurt by wheel hopping it there. Ever since then it wasn't the same so that was just driver error, too much rear brake getting on pit road. We had high hopes coming into today and we felt like we were going to be a car that could contend for a win. I felt like we were coming through the pack, taking our time coming through there. But the first pit stop had a driver mistake."
How close are you to winning a lot? "I think quite a bit. I think our team needs to get a little bit better on the mile-and-a-half race tracks. Obviously Kyle (Busch) doesn't have the speed that he had last year on these big race tracks. I think we're a little bit behind but it seemed like through practice our cars were good but when it gets to race conditions with a lot of rubber on the track is where it seems to really struggle for us. Towards the end of these races we're really fighting loose so we have to get our car to adapt a little bit better."
Have you learned to be more calm this year? "A little bit. It's a long season and if you harp on it too bad it can get to you. You especially don't want to get frustrated the week before a week off. You want to be able to enjoy your weekend. To me I look at it in the aspect that we finished in the position that we hadn't got in that position up until 30 to go, so we finished better than we ran all day. We salvaged something, that's about it."
What changes did you make to the car to try make it better? "We tried everything, but we just couldn't seem to get the car to come alive. We just battled it all day long. Ryan (Pemberton, crew chief) and the guys worked hard on pit road to try to make the car better, but we just fought it. We tried some two tire stuff and some things, but didn't get it right. Overall, we got a top-20 finish out of it, so we'll just enjoy the off-weekend and get ready for Phoenix and Talladega."
KYLE BUSCH, No. 18 Interstate Batteries Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing
Finishing Position: 18th
MICHAEL WALTRIP, No. 55 NAPA AUTO PARTS Toyota Camry, Michael Waltrip Racing
Finishing Position: 24th
JOEY LOGANO, No. 20 Home Depot Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing
Finishing Position: 30th
MAX PAPIS, No. 13 GEICO Toyota Camry, Germain Racing
Finishing Position: 35th
ROBBY GORDON, No. 7 Jim Beam Toyota Camry, Robby Gordon Motorsports
Finishing Position: 39th
Did the engine give you any indication that something was wrong? "No. It was running good. We had a decent run going. We were just never in the right position to the get the 'lucky dog,' but we were about a 10th or 15th-place car. I'm pretty happy with what we learned today. Unfortunately, we had a problem with the motor. But, I know the guys will go to work hard at TRD (Toyota Racing Development) and figure it out."
MARCOS AMBROSE, No. 47 Clorox Toyota Camry, JTG-Daugherty Racing
Finishing Position: 41st
What happened to take you out of the race? "We blew up. It's just a real shame, we had a great day going - ran top-10 speed all day. It's a shame we couldn't bring it home. We had Clorox on the car for the first time. I'm so proud of those guys coming on board with us. It's a shame we couldn't finish the deal."
DAVE BLANEY, No. 66 Toyota Camry, Prism Motorsports Finishing Position: 43rd
-credit: toyota motorsports