The Winston Open: TODD BODINE - No. 54 National Guard Taurus "We came off of two. I broke loose under Kenny (Wallace) on that restart. It's 20 laps and we're all in the front, so there's no need to get in a rush, but Tony (Raines) got a run...
The Winston Open:
TODD BODINE - No. 54 National Guard Taurus
"We came off of two. I broke loose under Kenny (Wallace) on that restart. It's 20 laps and we're all in the front, so there's no need to get in a rush, but Tony (Raines) got a run on the outside, I think, and he wasn't far enough up. The caution was out and I was just trying to race back to the caution and he got into me. I know Tony doesn't race like that. It wasn't anything intentional. It's just the excitement of The Winston. Running up front, everybody wants to go to the front, but this doesn't need to happen on the second lap."
ELLIOTT SADLER - No. 38 M&M's Taurus (Finished 23rd)
"It's very disappointing. To bring a new race car out here and have it run like that is kind of frustrating. I really don't know what to do to fix it. We're gonna try to bring back a different car next week and, hopefully, it'll be a little bit better. We'll wait and see, but it's embarrassing to run like that. We know we've got to go to work, so we'll see what we can do this week and, hopefully, make a better showing for the 600."
THE LEFT-FRONT HAS A LITTLE SHEETMETAL DAMAGE. DID THAT HAVE A NEGATIVE EFFECT? "No. It was bad way before that happened, so that didn't have any effect on the car at all. If anything, it might have made it better with the way it slung out like that, but we just missed it pretty good. We need to go back to work."
MARK MARTIN - No. 6 Viagra Taurus (Finished 15th)
"I was slowing down, but I had to get slowed down because the 5 was going around slowly and somebody ran into the back of me. It was probably Bill (Elliott) because I think he was running behind me and he got into the back of me and that turned us out of control. It just wadded up from there. The 20 just got in the back of the 5 and turned him and he was doing a slow spin, so I had to wait for it to go down or up. The 20 and I really had to really whoa down, but then I got hit from behind. The wreck was on once the 5 started turning sideways."
DALE JARRETT - No. 88 UPS Taurus (Finished 18th)
"I saw the 5 get turned. I'm not sure, but it looked like they might have gone three-wide. Anyway, when I saw that and saw him go up the track I thought I had a perfect opening to get to the bottom because I had beaten Gordon off turn four and got myself back on the bottom of the track in the last transfer spot. I thought I was gonna sneak by it, but I guess he ran in the back of me. It's just everybody trying to get what they can get. Unfortunately, we ended up in the middle of the wreck and that's kind of been the way this year has been."
YOU WERE TRYING TO HOLD GORDON OFF FOR THE LAST SPOT UNTIL THE WRECK. YOU WERE JUST TRYING TO MAKE YOUR CAR AS WIDE AS POSSIBLE? "I was just trying to get myself back to the bottom to where I could give myself a chance to at least run around and get off the corner to try and make something happen."
KURT BUSCH - No. 97 Rubbermaid Taurus (Finished 2nd)
"That was a lot of fun. I think they should give out money for passing cars and we'd have ended up with a lot of cash tonight. It's just a testament to the crew. It's a lot of fun to drive these kind of cars and I hope that we've got a great car like that next weekend. It's a car we saved and built for the 600 and it's a special paint scheme with Blue Ice next week, so to cap off this evening it's a lot of fun to come out and throw the points away and just duel for cash. There are moves you wouldn't pull in 100 years and it's a lot of fun to throw it up on the outside like that."
HOW GOOD WAS THE CAR IN THE LAST SEGMENT? "It was money-on. I mean, we made just one little to it for a shorter run and it was evident because we slowed up the last four laps of that run. It's awesome to drive cars like this and I've just got to thank my crew and all the sponsors that put us in this kind of position to go out and win some money."
HOW HARD IS IT JUST TO SURVIVE THIS RACE? "You've got to make calculated moves coming on pit road. There were a couple of times when we should have pitted, but Jimmy said to stay out. I was thinking we should pit, but, all in all, you've got to keep your track position because when you go to the back it's difficult to pass cars when everybody is scrambling."
JIMMIE JOHNSON WON THE SECOND SEGMENT LAST YEAR AND SUFFERED WITH THE INVERSION. YOU KNOW HOW HE FELT. "I think we had the fastest car or maybe the 18 did - he was stout. It's just a good way to run tonight. We didn't come here to play possum, so we ended up winning that second segment and ended up coming home second overall, so it wasn't a bad day."
WERE YOU HAVING FUN OUT THERE? "I was having a good time. You've always got to beat the 48 car when you come to Lowe's Motor Speedway. They're a stout bunch and they've always got their game on. Whether they chose to stay in the midpack and then run strong at the end, that's what it took for them to win. I didn't think we'd be able to come up that far from 10th place to finish second, so we had a great run. I'm real proud of my team and the way that this Ford ran."
JEFF BURTON - No. 99 CITGO Taurus (Finished 9th)
YOU KEPT HAVING TO SLOW DOWN BEHIND WRECKS IN THAT SECOND SEGMENT. "We just kept losing our track position and then we got off a little bit on our chassis and it took us a long time to get it back. We'd get ourselves right in the middle where we needed to be and then the wreck would happen and we'd lose all of it. Then I got into Ward and almost spun out, but I caught it and went all the way to last. I had to come back again, so we were back and forth all night. It was pretty interesting."
HOW BIG OF A LIFT IS IT FOR THIS TEAM TO GET TO VICTORY LANE TONIGHT? "I don't know. Winning is winning, there's no doubt about that. Obviously, the caliber of cars in the Open isn't what The Winston is, but, still, there are some good cars in there. We had a good practice last night and we ran well tonight. I'm disappointed with how we ran in The Winston because something just got away from us there. We'll get home and try to figure out what that was and we'll bring this car back. I don't know, it was a real strange night. Everytime we put a set of tires on it the car did something radically different. I don't understand why that is because I know the tires aren't that different. Since we weren't allotted enough tires - because only one guy was gonna transfer - none of our tires matched. We had a hodge-podge of stuff and I think that really had an effect on how we could run."
RICKY RUDD - No. 21 Motorcraft Taurus (Finished 11th)
"I didn't see anything a whole lot different than I've seen in Winston's from the past. It's always exciting. There are always a lot of wrecks. It's survival, but then you need to have your car adjusted so you're ready to win at the end. We had the Motorcraft/Air Force Ford in there all night. I thought the guys did a great job. We kept making that transfer spot every time, but we were just real tight. We couldn't get the front end to stick in the corner like we wanted to, so we at least had a good seat to see what was going on."
WHAT ABOUT THE PASS ON RUSTY? "Our car was pushing really bad and I couldn't get it to turn and stay on the bottom, so the only chance I had at all was to try to drive it into the upper lane and see if the front end would stick and it stuck for one lap anyway. That gave me enough momentum to beat Rusty off the corner. I know he was struggling with his handling on his car also. It wasn't pretty for either one of us, but I've never raced so hard for a transfer spot or 20th before, but it was fun racing."
WHAT DID YOU LEARN FOR THE 600? "You hate to say you used this as a test because there's a lot of money on the line and we wanted to run good, but we've been experimenting a lot trying to find ourselves. We came with a car tonight that we thought we were gonna be better with the 600 car. We're gonna bring back a different car on purpose that is built completely different from one another, so we're still in a severe learning mode right now."