March 3, 2001 Homestead Miami Speedway Craftsman Truck Series qualifying for Sunday's 250-mile race began at shortly after 11:00 a.m. today, and amid 80-degree temperatures and clear skies, 36 drivers circled the 1.5-mile Homestead Miami ...
March 3, 2001 Homestead Miami Speedway
Craftsman Truck Series qualifying for Sunday's 250-mile race began at shortly after 11:00 a.m. today, and amid 80-degree temperatures and clear skies, 36 drivers circled the 1.5-mile Homestead Miami Speedway for their one-lap qualifying run. With a 36-truck field decided among 36 entries, none of the competitors were forced to pack up their haulers before the start of the 167-lap event. Ten Fords will be on the starting grid for tomorrow's race, which has a scheduled start time of 12:00 noon.
RICKY SANDERS 19 TruckTrix.com F-150 (qualified 30th)
YOU WERE PRETTY LOOSE COMING OUT OF TURN 4.
"We played with some stuff at the end of practice. We tried to tighten it up a little bit without going overboard, but it was still too loose. When I picked up the throttle, the back end started coming around, and I had to lift a little bit to keep it under me and away from the wall."
DID YOU TAKE SOME RISKS WITH ONLY 36 TRUCKS ENTERED IN THE RACE?
"Yeah. When we started this morning we were a little tight, we got it loosened up pretty good and tried to go halfway between for qualifying. With the temperature and the sun, it was still a little loose. Turns 3 and 4 are our biggest concerns right now. We want to get through the middle and off of (Turn) 4."
TERRY COOK 29 K Automotive Ford F-150 (qualified 21st)
"That was as bad as we had been all day. We've been fighting the chassis setup since we got here, and we had it too loose for our qualifying run. We were pretty tight earlier, but we got it way too loose for qualifying. I think that by the end of Happy Hour we should be pretty good."
WHAT PART OF THE TRACK HAS GIVEN YOU THE MOST PROBLEMS?
"(Turns) 3 and 4. We got through (Turns) 1 and 2 pretty good most of the day, but even that time we were a little loose in (Turns) 1 and 2, so I knew we had it loosened up pretty good. We'll be all right by race time; we still have Happy Hour left. We were looking for some speed in qualifying, and unfortunately, we went the wrong way."
RICK CRAWFORD 14 Milwaukee Electric Tools Ford F-150 (qualified 10th)
"That wasn't too bad. The track has gotten hot and slick. We ran what we ran this morning, so I thinks that's a pretty good effort."
ARE YOU SETTING THE TRUCK UP FOR TURNS 3 and 4?
"I was having trouble this morning getting off of (Turn) 2. I was OK in Turns 3 and 4, but when we went out and qualified, (Turns) 3 and 4 became our problem area. It still isn't that big of a problem. Even it we don't get that fixed for the race, we can drive through that."
DO YOU TAKE A FEW MORE RISKS WHEN THERE ARE ONLY 36 TRUCKS ATTEMPTING TO
"No, not at all. It doesn't matter if there are only 10 trucks here; you always have to do your best. If you lose job and you're doing your best, you can't complain. I always try to keep looking forward and do the best that I can no matter if it's qualifying, practice or racing. These guys work hard on the truck and I try to give them all I've got."
WHAT AFFECT DID THE 12:1 COMPRESSION MOTOR HAVE ON HANDLING?
"You can feel it a little bit. I don't know if there is a drastic difference, but I think you'll see a little difference when you go to let off. The compression helps to break the truck a little bit and you have more torque. It's a little of that and a little of this, but it all helps."
IS IT MORE FINESSE OUT THERE NOW?
"No. There is no such thing a lot of finesse. That's why you have a top-grade crew, engine and a crew chief. They're there to tell the driver, 'We'll fix it, you just drive.'"
NATHAN HASELEU 99 Roush Performance Ford F-150 (qualified 31st)
"I came out of Turn 4 to take the green flag, and I got loose and had no speed on our qualifying lap. I screwed up. I guess we'll just have to start in the back tomorrow. The truck is pretty good. We made some qualifying laps in practice and it was decent, but I guess there was some driver error today in qualifying. Two laps would have helped me today, but we only had one shot today. I got a little anxious going to the green flag and that cost us."
LARRY GUNSELMAN 63 Waterloo Tool Storage Ford F-150 (qualified 33rd)
THAT WASN'T AS FAST AS YOU WOULD HAVE LIKED, BUT YOU'RE IN A BIT OF A DIFFERENT SITUATION.
"We're here kinda points racing. We're trying to get Waterloo to come on for the whole season, and right now it's a 10-race deal. We're footing the bill for this one ourselves. We're going to try to run the first six and see where we're at in the points after that. We had a problem with our 12:1 motor on the dyno, so had to bring an old 9.5:1 motor out, so we're down 100 horsepower form the guys we're racing against. We're having a hard time getting a grip on this race track; it's my first time here. We still need to get it to turn a little better. I think we'll be all right tomorrow. We'll come out here and be smart because we going to start near the back of the pack. We need to go out and survive this and see if we can't pick up a top-15 finish."
CHUCK HOSSFELD 50 JR's Garage Ford F-150 (qualified 17th)
"This is a pretty cool track. It's nice and smooth, and hopefully our qualifying time holds on to the top 20. It wasn't a very good lap. I think we're 15th right now, but I think we'll end up around 16th or 17th."
WHEN YOU STRAPPED INTO THE TRUCK THIS MORNING, IT WAS YOUR FIRST TIME AROUND
THIS TRACK. HOW DID YOU LEARN WHAT LINE TO DRIVE?
"In all honesty, I'm by not means setting the world on fire here, but it was pretty easy. Like Dennis Setzer said in the drivers' meeting, this is a pretty easy track to drive. It seems like I picked it up pretty quick. It's a fast track, but the groove is around the bottom. I didn't struggle too bad."
DID YOU FOLLOW ANYBODY IN PRACTICE?
"I would have liked to follow one of the veterans, but I didn't happen to get out behind anybody. I was pretty much on my own."
BARRY BODINE 25 Miccosukee Gaming Group Ford F-150 (qualified 26th)
"I was loose, pretty loose. I guess everybody's fighting it right now, but we've been fighting it all day long."
DID YOU SET THE TRUCK UP FOR TURNS 3 AND 4?
"Actually, it was better in Turns 1 and 2 before, but we just didn't have any grip. It was pretty slick."
YOUR DAD WON THE POLE HERE IN THE TRUCK SERIES IN 1996. DID HE HAVE ANY
ADVICE FOR YOU?
"We're trying to use that information, but it's a whole new tire that we're running and we have more power, so things are different. We try to use the same stuff, but it's different. The new motor is changing our driving line a little bit. We're carrying more speed into the corners, and we're carrying some more coming off. It's not a huge difference, but it does make a difference."