RICK CRAWFORD-14-Circle Bar Truck Corral Ford F-150 (Qualified 2nd) "I got everything she had. The hammer was down. Cowboy (Kevin Starland, crew chief) asked me if we had anything left from practice - we ran a 90 - and I told him I thought it...
RICK CRAWFORD-14-Circle Bar Truck Corral Ford F-150 (Qualified 2nd)
"I got everything she had. The hammer was down. Cowboy (Kevin Starland, crew chief) asked me if we had anything left from practice - we ran a 90 - and I told him I thought it had a 70 in it; we did that when we tested here a few weeks ago. I told him how much the truck had in it and we were two or three tenths off all practice. I told him that if we kept working on it and found the combination it was looking for that the Circle Bar Truck Corral Ford F-105 would run good. He asked me after practice after turning 29.90 if it had a 60 in it and I said, 'Yep,' but I didn't know it had a 60. Tom Mitchell (owner) puts out a big effort for this race team the whole year and we want to give him something back when we come to his home state of Texas, and it would be quite an honor to be on the pole here."
HOW CLOSE TO WIDE OPEN DO YOU RUN HERE IN QUALIFYING? "Damn near it. Let's just say you don't hold anything back."
TODD KLUEVER-50-Shell Rotella T Ford F-150 (Qualified 25th)
"We're not too bad. We'll get better. For some reason this truck doesn't like to run on new tires and we struggled with it, but we'll be all right for the race when it cools off some."
YOU TESTED HERE RECENTLY, BUT HAVE YOU EVER RUN HERE IN THE DRAFT? "I've never been in a pack yet, but I know at Lowe's that it was more like Daytona than any place I've ever been to before. This place is seems similar and I imagine it will be like that tomorrow."
ARE THERE ANY CHARACTERISTICS THAT SETS THIS PLACE APART FROM THE OTHER MILE-AND-A-HALF TRACKS? "To me, at the other mile-and-a-half tracks you get in the banking long before you get in the turn, and here it's really flat and you kind of pick the banking up after you've already turned into the corner and the banking goes away before you're done getting out of the corner. It's a little different that way and then the little ripple bumps in one and two are getting worse and worse, but everywhere has it's little characteristics."
TERRY COOK-10-Power Stroke Diesel by Int'l Ford F-150 (Qualified 22nd)
"We chased the track conditions a little bit today. It's hard to explain, but it felt like it was a fast truck and we just couldn't find that one last thing to put us over the top. Right there in qualifying, the truck felt like it was up on the track, but nonetheless it was still two laps wide open. Whether the truck was down in the track or not, I don't think we could have gone any faster. We brought a race truck here and not a qualifier, and hopefully it will race well tomorrow night."
HOW MUCH DO THE TRACK CONDITIONS CHANGE HERE BETWEEN DAY AND NIGHT? "This is a temperamental track, but not as much as Lowe's, and the grip numbers will definitely change at night. In qualifying the truck is taped up, tire pressures are up and you're on sticker tires. It's so irrelevant to what you actually race. Of course, we practiced all day in blistering heat and then we're going to race tomorrow night under the lights. Typically it will tighten up, and we were fighting a little bit of a tight condition in qualifying. The balance was good, front and back, it was just not sitting down into the track."
HOW MUCH DOES THE DRAFT PLAY A PART IN THE RACE? "It's probably on the lower end of the scale of the mile-and-a-half tracks. You take Daytona and all of the two-mile tracks, and you draft very similarly. At the mile-and-a-half tracks, Atlanta being primary and Texas being secondary, it comes into play, but not like you see at Daytona where you can split them three wide getting into the corner. The only time you can really draft up behind somebody is when they lose momentum off of the corner or check up."
RICKY CRAVEN-99-Superchips Ford F-150 (Qualified 10th)
"It was a good effort by the team. They did a really good job. I didn't know what to expect because we had been pretty free, but it was a good two laps."
IS THERE ANY DIFFERENCE IN THE WAY YOU APPROACH THIS TRACK IN A TRUCK VERSUS A CAR? "It's not much different. The trucks drive different than the cars, but the race track's no different."
DO YOU FEEL THAT YOU HAVE TO GIVE UP A LITTLE BIT IN QUALIFYING TO HAVE A GOOD RACE TRUCK WITH THE IMPOUND PROCEDURES? "We've given up in qualifying and run decent, so maybe there's something to it. We haven't really set the world afire in qualifying. We've qualified respectably, and I think you have to show some speed in these trucks to be competitive. I think you need to be top 10 in qualifying, but I'm not convinced that being the fastest means you're going to have the best truck in the race."