RICK CRAWFORD-14-Circle Bar Truck Corral Ford F-150 (Qualified 2nd) "I got everything we had out of it, but it was a really good ride. I was expecting to maybe bring a surprise souvenir, it was little twitchy out there, but we've got powerful...
RICK CRAWFORD-14-Circle Bar Truck Corral Ford F-150 (Qualified 2nd)
"I got everything we had out of it, but it was a really good ride. I was expecting to maybe bring a surprise souvenir, it was little twitchy out there, but we've got powerful Roush/Yates engines under the hood. These guys bounced back from that first hour of almost disaster and really went to work hard. Kevin Starland heads up this team and we're Built Ford Tough. This second hour really worked for the Circle Bar Truck Corral Ford. This is home. This is the next best thing from Atlanta and Daytona. We really want to win here and I hope the pole holds out, but I know it's an early draw."
WITH THE WORK THAT WAS DONE TO TURNS THREE AND FOUR, HOW DIFFERENT IS THE RACING SURFACE? "It's a lot smoother, and it's a lot closer to Atlanta than it used to be. The straightaways still have the same characteristics, and you still have to enter the corners the same way, but it's a lot smoother, which allows you to be a little more aggressive with the spring and the shock package, and it holds you to the ground."
DOES THAT MEAN WE'LL SEE SIDE-BY-SIDE RACING, OR DOES IT ALLOW YOU TO PASS OUT OF THE CORNERS? "I hope we start on the pole and then it's not side-by-side for me. You ought to be able to pass. I passed a couple of trucks out there in practice and was able to do it, but that's all because of setup and knowing where the groove is it."
HOW DID YOU COMPENSATE FOR THE FACT PRACTICE AND QUALIFYING WAS DURING DAYLIGHT AND THE RACE IS AT NIGHT? "What you do is you put your race setup in it, and then you gear up for qualifying with tape on the grille and where you put the trackbar. You have to set up for qualifying within the rules, but then you already know your race setup, so it makes it easy to just to take your race setup and plug it in once you get in your impound package."
TERRY COOK-10-Power Stroke Diesel by Int'l Ford F-150 (Qualified 29th)
"We're a little disappointed with that. I thought we could have at least run an 80, maybe even a 70. We did test here, but just like everybody else that did we probably only got 20 laps total on the track when we were here. I don't know if you can call it test and NASCAR didn't even count it against us because it wasn't much of a test. We were off just a little bit today, but not too bad and right there at the end of practice we got into something pretty good. We made the proper adjustments and we were real loose getting into the corner. We were real loose into one on both laps. The first lap I just thought it was a tire issue, and it did the same exact thing the second lap. It was real loose and I had to get off the throttle just to catch it and killed its momentum for the lap. I think it will race really well. Typically this place will tighten up a little bit at night, and everybody has told me that you have to be pretty loose in qualifying to be ready for the race, and that's where we're at. I think it's still going to be the same old Charlotte when it boils right down to it. When we get into the race, 20 laps in you're going to be pushing like a freight train. Knowing that we're pretty loose might bode well for the race."
WHAT WILL BE THE IMPACT OF THE GRINDING OF THE RACE TRACK IN TURNS THREE AND FOUR? "In my personal opinion, and I'm optimistic, we'll have to wait and see the way the race plays out, but I thought we had a great race track before and I don't know exactly why they ground it up. We'll see if Humpy and the rest of the gang here at Lowe's Motor Speedway knew exactly what they were talking about. We'll find out after the race if it's a three or four-groove track like they're hoping, but I already thought we had two or three groves here. We'll see."
RICKY CRAVEN-99-Superchips Ford F-150 (Qualified 13th)
"Track position is a little bit less important than last week, but there's still an easy way and a hard way of doing things. The guys really worked for this one today. By gosh, we struggled with a brand new truck hitting the race track. It's amazing. That was the first real lap that we made today. That was the first clean lap than we made all day. In that respect I'm really proud of the effort and optimistic."
HOW DIFFERENT IS THIS TRACK NOW WITH THE WORK THEY DID IN THE CORNERS? "It's like a superspeedway with bumps. They've smoothed it out and it's much better and it has more grip, but there are still waves in the track. The truck is still going to move around, and it's going to be interesting."
WILL THERE BE MORE SIDE-BY-SIDE RACING TOMORROW? "I don't know. I can't answer that. Typically when you run this fast it's awfully hard to be underneath somebody. I expect that you will see some close racing, but I don't expect that you'll se side-by-side racing"