Watkins Glen post qualifying quotes


BUSCH POLE QUALIFYING QUOTES ROBBY GORDON (#40 Coors Light Chevrolet) -- "We knew we were going to run faster than this to be on the pole. We tried real hard, and I think we had a pretty decent run, but I blew it in one corner that was a really costly one, heading up onto the fast straightaway. The car's working pretty good, and they guys are doing a really good job, so I hope that...we should be in the top 25, and have a good car for the race."

BILL ELLIOTT (#94 McDonald's Ford) -- "Seems like every weekend we have a bit of a problem, but hopefully we can get the monkey out of the race car. All in all, we've been real lucky the last two weeks. Coming up here and testing really helped us. We learned a lot by doing it, and I feel that it was definitely the thing to do, and I feel like it will help us more on Sunday."

JIMMY SPENCER ( #23 Camel Cigarettes Ford) -- That's my fastest lap yet. They have given me such a good car all year. Last year we had a good car, but we crashed it in practice. It's good when the car is fast, but sometimes the drivers not up to it. We've been close so many times to the top five all year. We'll just hope for a top ten finish here Sunday. I'm so used to turning left my whole life, so I'm pretty good in the left handers. I think you've got to have a car that's underneath you. DALE JARRETT (#88 Quality Care/Ford Credit Ford) -- It was a pretty good lap. I got so excited I made it almost all the way around, and in the left hander here I just missed the corner pretty much. I was very lucky to stay on the course, and that probably cost us a ten and a half or so. It won't be good enough for the pole, but its a good start.

TODD BODINE (#34 Hardinge Chevrolet) -- I guess everybody gets lucky every once in a while. I wanted to go out and get a decent smooth lap to get us in the race. The lap was two tenths faster than practice. The car was smooth. We made two changes to qualify and we had a good set of tires and Ron had a good engine. I still can't believe it. I didn't make any mistakes, and I just got a good lap. I got into all the corners right and I was just smooth. I'm not afraid of the Winston Cup cars here. I've run three Winston Cup races here and I always run well in the Busch cars here. Its kind of like having the home field advantage when we come here, and we try to rise to the occasion. We were struggling back in practice and we made some changes and said we'll see if they work.

DARRELL WALTRIP (#17 Parts America Chevrolet) -- That will not get a shuffle, I'll tell you that. It's going to get me shuffled right to the back I'm afraid. The car's good. It's driving great but we haven't been able to get quite enough speed out of it. We're four or five tenths off of what we need to be. It's diving good and I think we'll race well but this isn't a real great qualifying effort. The driver did good. The car did good. We just didn't go fast enough.

RICKY CRAVEN (#25 Budweiser Chevrolet) -- I got crossed up through the esses and unfortunately that's a place you don't want to make a mistake. That's the fastest place of the course. We gave up quite a bit there. We'll probably end up going again tomorrow. I attempted to make up for the lost time there and really, the rest of the lap I was pretty happy with. It's hard to say, there are 11 opportunities to mess up here at Watkins Glen and we did it up through the esses.

JEFF GORDON (#24 DuPont Refinishes Chevrolet) -- I bobbled just a little bit in the esses. That hurt me about a tenth of a second but other then that, I got through everywhere just a little bit better. I learned from last year. We had a shot at the pole last year and I overdrove it. This time I just tried to get a really smooth clean lap and we got that. We're still off just a little bit in speed. I've really gotten to where I enjoy the road courses. I can really get aggressive here and drive the track hard. It's a great track and I really enjoy it.

JEFF BURTON (#99 Exide Batteries Ford) -- It was terrible. We haven't run real good since we've been here. We struggled the whole time. We're just not running good. We don't know, we just don't know.

STEVE PARK (#14 Burger King Chevrolet) -- My hat's off to the whole Burger King team who worked so hard. We've come back from not qualifying at Pocono to get a good qualifying run in here at Watkins Glen. We're just real happy. We're real happy. The whole entire team has done a real good job. We tested here and we came back really confident knowing that we might be able to qualify in the first round. We're really happy to be here. I'm excited. I don't even know what to say. I'm just excited that we're going to be able to start are first Winston Cup race here at Watkins Glen.

RUSTY WALLACE (#2 Miller Lite Ford Thunderbird) -- It was a decent qualifying run. I wish I could have been a little better at it. It felt a lot faster than what I run. I ran a 60, and it felt like the thing really ran in the low 13s. But we'll take it and put another motor in it that has more power. We'll work on it for race day . It's not that we ran slow or anything, I just wanted to run faster. I ran a 55 last year and this year a 50, and it's the same car, same tires, same rules. You tell me. I ran about the same speed as I did last year, but I was hoping for a little bit more. I had no problems with the run. I got into turn one really good. I thought I got off of everything pretty good. Maybe I could have done a little more in turn one and a little bit more in the esses. But I made everything up the rest of the way around the track. All my right-handers were really great.

BOBBY LABONTE (#18 Interstate Batteries Pontiac Grand Prix) -- We freed the car up and did some stuff for qualifying and it worked out. I never did run a perfect lap, so I don't know what a perfect lap is. Through the Esses I hit the curb. I ran over the curb. In the Inner Loop , where I never did get through there good, I got in pretty good, but I didn't get off it as good. It felt like it got too slow in the middle of the corner. I got a little bit tight off the last corner. Qualifying on a road course is harder than an oval. You have a lot more corners to mess up on .

STERLING MARLIN (#4 Kodak Film Chevrolet) -- That was pretty good qualifying. The guys did a good job on the car. Right now if we can only run good in the race. I don't know if this race is any more critical than any other. We're trying every race. No doubt today was good for our confidence. Mark Martin and some of the others with road race experience run good here. That run of ours wasn't bad. We never did get to run a banzai lap. Oval tracks you can pass better. Passing here is hard. There are nice people up here, I just can't get around this track. I like watching road racing on television.

DALE EARNHARDT (#3 GM Goodwrench Service Plus Chevrolet) -- "I really couldn't get down on that throttle hard like I was last year, and I knew it, but we still made good time. If we can stay out of trouble and run like we did last year - we sat right there in the front, and if the pit strategy we have works out...we want to come out and win a race."

JOHNNY BENSON (#30 Pennzoil Pontiac) -- "Testing here helped. We qualified 38th last year, so hopefully, it will be a little bit better this year. I hope we're better in the race. We've just been doing qualifying, because we qualified so badly last year, so we'll have to work on it for the race. I hope we can get it better, but we just won't know until we can get it going."

TERRY LABONTE (#5 Kellogg's Chevrolet) -- " It's not very good, really. That's just the fastest I can do it. As fast as I'm going to do it."

BOBBY HAMILTON (#43 STP Pontiac) -- "It went good. I think we're going to make the top 25. I'm not much of a road racer, but the guys built a pretty good car - this is the same car they've had since about 1992, I think, and it just keeps repeating and repeating. I went to Topeka and ran the truck race and the All-Pro race out there and got spiffed up a little bit on my road racing, and I came here and I'm just having fun. I love this place. This is probably one of the best road courses we go to as far as racing. There aren't a lot of blind spots, and it's real fast in a couple of places, but it's not just real hard on equipment."

WARD BURTON (MBNA America Pontiac) -- The car had motor trouble early on. We didn't get much practice. That was the seventh lap since we've been here. The guys did a good job. The car was fast right off the truck. We loosened it up a little bit for the last run. I guess we left some out on the track. We probably don't have the right gear in the car. I'm giving up at some places on the track on gear where motor would help. We just have to keep working on it. I think the car would race well.

JOE NEMECHEK (#42 BellSouth Chevrolet) -- Our car is a brand new car. It's the first time we run it. It's a good car. Anytime you qualify in the top ten at Watkins Glen with some pretty heavy hitter here, it's something. Mark Martin's always good here. Dale Earnhardt. A lot of guys. I knew we had a shot at the pole. Todd Bodine clicked off an excellent lap there. I knew if I hit every turn perfect I had a shot at him. Then the car pushed real bad. I almost hit the guardrail, so I had to get out of the gas real fast. It so fast though there, a little mistake and you loose so much time. I know where I lost my time. I'm happy. I love this place. We're starting good. We'll run good in the long runs.

BRETT BODINE (#11 Close Call/Rochester Steel Treating Ford) -- I'm real pleased with our announcement this week and Andy Evans and IMSG coming on board. It'll be really helping us out in a lot of areas in the future. I'm a little disappointed in that effort. We had something in the ignition. The rev-limiter was going off way early. It was really hurting our top-end speed, especially on up-shifts. We'll just have to look at it. We didn't have anything for Todd, but I'm real happy for him. We'll just get this CloseCall Ford ready for this weekend.

RICK MAST (#75 Remington Arms For) -- We're still struggling a little bit. It was a pretty good lap on a pretty slow day. MARK MARTIN ( #6 Valvoline Ford) -- Hopefully we'll that last inch here Sunday. That's what counts. We'd have liked to have done better today. I had an excellent lap. I got around there good. We ran faster testing here, but we couldn't to it today. But we'll take what you can get. Sometimes you start in the back. Sometimes you start up front. Sometimes you finish in between. I'm going to race them hard all day.

WALLY DALLENBACH (#46 First Union Chevrolet) - That wasn't too bad, but we thought we'd be a little quicker. That was a little bit faster than we ran in practice when we made our run. That's probably the best I qualified here, so we've got a good race car..

GEOFF BODINE (#7 QVC FORD) -- We've been making lots of changes with this team and there's more to come. I really like to see more road racing. There are some road course around the country I'd like to see us go to. Two is good, but it's really hard to justify two races, but it works and we're all surviving. We actually have one more in Japan, but that doesn't count. That hardest thing when you strap yourself is to make it around this track without going off. It's really a challenging track.

RICKY RUDD (#10 Tide Ford) -- I'll tell you, our guys did a job. We really weren't prepared for the backup. Maybe we got a little bit behind after Indy last week. I had to roll the backup our and the guys had to worked on it right here. It's going to be pretty racy. The car really pushed bad. We weren't able to take the front end grill off or anything. We left a lot on the table. Gaining 27 positions is hard. You have to work on it. You have to pick 'em off one at a time. We'll l see how it goes. Believe it or not, you can go from there to up front. It just takes some patience. You won't see us until halfway through the race, even if we have a winning car. It just takes a lot of hard work. We'll look at second day (qualifying).We left probably a second out there. We'll just have to go back and take a look at it.

SCOTT WELLIVER, owner (#34 Hardinge Chevrolet) -- This feels pretty darn good, no question about it. We just plain know what we’re doing, that’s all. We came up here and tested. We knew we had a good car. This morning we pulled it off the truck and we just went backwards all day long and after the practice we made some drastic changes and low and behold! Mike McLaughlin is here. He got here a little late today, I guess he had to sleep in, but they had a few words.

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Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Dale Earnhardt , Todd Bodine , Andy Evans , Mark Martin