JORGE GOETERS-27-Scotiabank Ford Fusion (Qualified 4th) "The car is OK. We were working very hard trying to get a stronger car for qualifying. I think we have a very good setup for racing. We are fine. We are OK with fourth place. We want more...
JORGE GOETERS-27-Scotiabank Ford Fusion (Qualified 4th)
"The car is OK. We were working very hard trying to get a stronger car for qualifying. I think we have a very good setup for racing. We are fine. We are OK with fourth place. We want more because this is our town, but this is perfect for us."
THIS IS YOUR THIRD BUSCH RACE HERE. ARE YOU COMFORTABLE ENOUGH IN THESE CARS NOW? "I think from 2005 to 2007, it's a completely different story for myself. I learned a lot and I've tried to speak better English so that I understand everybody more than in 2005. I'm really excited for this weekend, and very pleased with the Brewco team giving me the opportunity to drive for them. I'll be very happy."
COMMENT ON THE ABSENCE OF THE CHICANE. "I like it. For me, it's better. For the fans and for the people watching on TV there is very good zone to pass and to watch from there. It's good for the people that are in the grandstands at the end of the straight because everybody wants to take the first turn first, so I think this is better for sport."
TODD KLUEVER-16-3M Ford Fusion (Qualified 31st)
WERE YOU A LITTLE MORE COMFORTABLE IN QUALIFYING THIS YEAR? "It was a little bit more fun this time around. It's just hard because I don't have a lot of experience and qualifying is kinda tough; it takes me a little while to get a rhythm. I think we'll be all right. Eddie (Pardue, crew chief) and these guys did a really good job with the car. I'm really happy with it."
COMMENT ON THE ABSENCE OF THE CHICANE THIS YEAR. "I think it's a lot better. I think it will be a better race. People are going to be able to pass on the front straightaway, which is what all these fans come to see. They have all those seats on the front straightaway to see some action, and I think they will see passing there this year. That was definitely the most dangerous part of the race track last year, so I'm glad to see it gone."
WHAT ARE YOUR EXPECTATIONS FOR THE RACE TOMORROW? "We're going to try and keep it clean. I've never finished one of these road course races, so that's ultimately the first goal. But, I'd like to run at least fairly well and in the top 15. I think that'd be a good weekend for us and just keep this 3M Ford in top 10 in points and build from there. We weren't very good at road course racing last year, so I have to crawl before I can walk."
GREG BIFFLE-37-Yard-Man Fusion (Qualified 25th)
THERE APPEARED TO BE SOME CONFUSION DURING YOUR QUALIFYING ATTEMPT. "All of the officials are down here telling me, 'Go. Go. Go.' Originally, they told us that if we didn't go with our group that we don't get to qualify. That's it. First they said, 'Whatever group you can make it there, you'll go to the back of that group.' Then they said, 'You have to be with your group or you don't get to go.' So then when we came out, I buckled in and they were all, 'Go. Go. Go. You've gotta go.' We knew our group was on the track, so I went. I guess the guy was telling me to go around to the staging area. So, whatever. I ran the goody off my tires trying to get a lap. I ran a faster lap time then and by lifting off the gas than I did there flat out."
WILL THAT BE AN ISSUE FOR TOMORROW? "I don't think it matters at all now. We'll probably be 15th or better, I'm guessing because I imagine that a lot of these guys are going to beat us. I still feel like we can be 15th or better, and that's the top portion that we wanted to get the Yard-Man car in is that top 15. We hope that will be safe going down into turn one down here."
BOBBY HAMILTON, JR.-35-McDonald's Ford Fusion (Qualified 17th)
DID YOU SURPRISE YOURSELF IN QUALIFYING? "I'm not the road course driver. These guys ran good here last year. I just kinda stepped right in there. I like the place, it's really fun and we kept working really hard on it yesterday getting it as soft as we could in the front. It was just a little bit free that run, but overall I'm really surprised. If we walk out of here with a top 15 in qualifying, I'd be tickled to death."
YOU HAVEN'T COMPETED ON A ROAD COURSE SINCE 2001. WAS IT A TOUGH ADJUSTMENT YESTERDAY? "It's been a while since Watkins Glen, and the biggest thing that I've always complained about is that I never had anything that would stop. I've always run through stuff and could never get it to whoa down. I think I got that figured out and the car is turning good. When the car is turning good you can run a fast time. Luckily enough, I have pretty decent equipment. Like I said, these guys were in the top 10 all last year here. I'm lucky to be in something good."
MICHEL JOURDAIN, JR.-17-Dish Network Ford Fusion (Qualified 11th)
YOU CURRENTLY STAND AT THE TOP OF THE BOARD AFTER THE FOURTH QUALIFYING GROUP. "I think that might be good for maybe the top 10. We have to start at the back because we changed the motor yesterday, so I didn't want to make a big mistake that would really cost us."
WHAT WERE YOU HOPING TO GET OUT OF QUALIFYING TODAY? "Pit selection is the only thing that we have and to see how the car is."
HOW IS THE CAR? "The car is OK. It's a lot better, but we'll have to see."
WHAT'S YOUR PLAN TO COME FROM THE BACK TO THE FRONT TOMORROW? "Well, strategy is going to be a big factor. I have to be patient. I will try to pass as many cars, but I want to keep the car in one piece."
SO, YOU WILL HAVE TO GAMBLE ON PIT STRATEGY? "Yeah, exactly."
JON WOOD-47-Clorox/American Red Cross Ford Fusion (Qualified 29th)
"Well, we've been fighting some issues since we got here. It's certainly not as good as the cars we had here last year. Fortunately there will be plenty of cautions, and I have enough adjustment in that car to where without question I can make it a lot better."
WHAT TYPES OF ISSUES HAVE YOU FACED THIS WEEKEND? "Issues, as in a rookie crew chief with a rookie road racing driver, and we have done no road course testing in the off-season. And, we've only got 25 laps on the race track. It's nothing that anybody did wrong, but we will be a lot better tomorrow. I can guarantee that."
CARL EDWARDS-60-Scotts Ford Fusion (Qualified 9th)
DO YOU LIKE THIS STYLE OF QUALIFYING. "They'll go faster than that, but it's fun. I think it's exciting for the fans."
IS IT FUN FOR A DRIVER TO TRY TO SET THE TIME FOR THE FASTER GROUPS TO BEAT? "I think it's fun. I think it's cool that it crescendos to the fastest guys, and that pretty neat."
WOULD IT WORK FOR AN OVAL? "That would be fun. Then you'd have guys sand-bagging for weather and all sorts of stuff."
TALK ABOUT YOUR QUALIFYING RUN. "That won't hold up for the pole, but it will probably be top 10 or top eight. That will be fine. If we can start up front and race with those guys and have good pit strategy - I think our car is really awesome on long runs - so that will be fine. I could have slipped up and ran a second slower and that would have been frustrating, but that was the fastest lap that we've run all weekend by about eight tenths, and I'm happy wit it."
STEPHEN LEICHT-90-CitiFinancial Ford Fusion (Qualified 13th)
IT SEEMS LIKE THE YOUNG DRIVERS CAN OVERCOME SOME OF THEIR INEXPERIENCE HERE TO RUN WELL. "I think not knowing a lot might be a little bit of a benefit coming to a road course because maybe you try stuff out that normally you wouldn't if you kinda know the race track, and you find stuff that makes you faster. The guys have done a great job. Our whole team has done awesome all weekend. The car is good. We haven't done much to it, it's just me learning the race track and learning what to do with these things on a road course. But, we've been getting better every day."
WHAT ARE YOUR EXPECTATIONS FOR TOMORROW? "We're definitely looking for a top 15 right now. The way the car is handling and the way that it's running, a top 10 is definitely possible. Who knows, if we're there at the end and we still have a car in one piece, we might have a shot at something a little better."
MARCOS AMBROSE-59- Kingsford/Bush's/Matchlight Ford Fusion (Qualified 12th)
"I'm fighting learning the track and fighting to learn these stock cars, and we're learning each other on these road courses. That was not a bad run. We're going to have a solid race; we have a pretty good package."
ARE YOU ABLE TO OVERCOME SOME OF THE DISADVANTAGES OF BEING A ROOKIE WITH YOUR KNOWLEDGE OF ROAD RACING? "I'd like to be better than I am. It's nice to know road course racing and to feel comfortable when we're here. We would like to go better than we have so far."
TALK ABOUT THE RACE TOMORROW. "It's going to be exciting for, obviously, all of the Mexican drivers. You don't want to knock off Fernandez. That would be bad news. It's just road course racing. You have to defend your spot sometimes to get a bit of a clear track, and make them work hard to get past you."
-credit: ford racing