TED MUSGRAVE (No. 1 Mopar Performance Parts Dodge Ram) - Started 14th, Finished Second "We battled some aero-push that kept us from getting around Kevin (Harvick) at the end there, but that's just the way it is. We tried everything other than ...
TED MUSGRAVE (No. 1 Mopar Performance Parts Dodge Ram) - Started 14th, Finished Second
"We battled some aero-push that kept us from getting around Kevin (Harvick) at the end there, but that's just the way it is. We tried everything other than taking him out. On the last lap we gave him a shove over and let him know that we were a little quicker. I wrinkled his quarter panel a little bit - what the heck, it's Harvick you know? But our Mopar Dodge was good. We had to come from the back after we made that one adjustment there. We're points racing now. Rick Crawford ran real good. We ran side-by-side. We're all thinking of the big picture right now. Kevin wanted to win bad, and I want to win the championship. We were close to it. I almost wanted to take him out at the end, but it wouldn't have been right.
"We lowered the track bar on that first caution. We changed four shocks, and then we changed the springs in the rear, rubber in the right rear, the sway bar and did all that after happy hour. We came pretty close, just needed one adjustment during the race. But the guys know what to do, and it worked out right. We had a good Dodge out there today.
"On that final restart I called my spotter and told Eddie Thrap, 'Hey, get a hold of the No. 14 spotter. Remember, we're racing for points here. Let's not be stupid.' But Ray Crawford had a good head on his shoulders, so I knew in the back that we had a nice race. We did all we could to pass Kevin Harvick, but his truck was just as good as mine. He could run my line, and he knew that. We ran at the bottom of the lane down there, and he could make my truck push a little bit. So, all I could do was keep up with him. I couldn't pass him because of the aero-push, but I just let him know that I was there on the last lap. In the last corner I gave him a shot and booted him up the racetrack. I just about got him at the line. I was only going to be able to do that on the last lap because I knew he was going to retaliate if I got by him. We came up about three feet short. But the guys did a good job in the pits. All we had to do was just drop the trackbar a little bit, and that's all we did all day. I think between myself, Gene Nead and everybody, we got our heads together and did a real good job today.
"Well yeah, I could have hit (Kevin Harvick) a little harder. I could have hit him as hard as I wanted and put him in the fence, but that wouldn't have been very good. I just tried to give him a little bump and run. I tried to move him up, get him loose and get underneath him for a drag race at the end. You want to just move him up out of the lane a little bit -- you don't want to take him out. We came up just three feet short at the end. But we've got another race to go to at Homestead-Miami and I think he may be coming to it, so I want to finish that one.
BRENDAN GAUGHAN (No. 62 NAPA/Orleans Dodge Ram) - Started 23rd, finished 13th
"We actually had it where we thought our Dodge was dialed in right. We just got tangled up a little bit with a lapper there. We put our left-front into him, and put our nose into the wall. He came up and took us about four inches short. It made us real loose all day.
"At this track I'm not as experienced as some of these Winston Cup guys that notice more about weather changes. We were just loose all day. We couldn't get it. We looked like we had it right on that restart. We were going forward, but then got the nose pushed in.
"Man, that's three straight freaking years that we've been 13th here. But, next weekend will be our final race with NAPA Auto Parts, so we'll be going for one more win there. We were the second Dodge today. I think we would've been damn good. We just got hung up with some lapped traffic, and it took our nose in a little bit. We all know that these things aren't the easiest things to drive anyway, but when you make them real loose it gets even worse. We gave it a shot though. We had great power today-we ran 9,200 all day. Kevin Kroyer builds great motors and Dodge has the power in them."
BILL LESTER (No. 8 Dodge Motorsports Dodge Ram) - Started second, finished 15th
"We improved a lot after pitting on that second caution. But then the truck tightened up. That was what we were fighting from center off. It killed our momentum terribly, and I was just a sitting duck out there. It's just going to take some experience with us working together to get it right. But there's no question in anyone's mind, I think, that we're definitely fast when it's right."
CARLOS CONTRERAS (No. 43 Hot Wheels Dodge Ram) - Started 26th, finished 19th
"Well, the truck was pretty good through the first pit today, but only through the first pit. We were a little tight off, but fast, very fast. We were able to take a lot of spots. But when we took the second set of tires we were very bad. We were just way too tight. Those tires were so different from our first set and we were just hoping for a caution, but it just never came.