BUSCH: Mexico City: Winning driver interview

DENNY HAMLIN RACES HIS NO. 20 ROCKWELL AUTOMATION CHEVROLET MONTE CARLO SS TO HIS FIRST NASCAR CAREER POINTS WIN: Note = This was his first NASCAR Busch Series career victory in 39 starts. He is one of seven drivers who is running full time in...

DENNY HAMLIN RACES HIS NO. 20 ROCKWELL AUTOMATION CHEVROLET MONTE CARLO SS TO HIS FIRST NASCAR CAREER POINTS WIN:

Note = This was his first NASCAR Busch Series career victory in 39 starts. He is one of seven drivers who is running full time in both the Busch and Cup Series this year.

"We pretty much executed perfectly -- everything from our pit strategy to on the race track. We just didn't have any altercations at all. We chose to come in on Lap 6 for our first pit stop and that put us in a window where we could go to half way and then pit again. So, it was a great job by Dave Rogers, my crew chief. I give a lot of credit to him for getting me that track position. I told him before the race started to try not to put me in a situation where I have to drive to the front. That just leads to a lot of problems as you saw with Kyle Busch. When you've got to drive to the front, you risk yourself. We were just real patient. There at the end, I just said in my head that it was 50 laps to go, not five laps; and it's 20 laps to go, not two. I just kind of put that in my mind. To beat Boris Said is a huge accomplishment. The guy is flawless and what can I say? We just had a great car."

ON MEXICO CITY BEING THE SITE OF HIS FIRST WIN?

"I tell you, there is no other place I'd rather have it than here in Mexico. It's a race track I was looking forward to going to. This track just fits my driving style perfectly and it's a great race track. The fans are great. Everybody in the Busch Series feels very welcome."

WHAT IS IT ABOUT THIS TRACK THAT YOU LIKE SO MUCH?

"There are a lot of different things about this track that are put into one. I like road course racing. I like going left and right. But it's also tight corners, so it's a short track. But it's also a flat track because there are no elevation changes. Those three tracks right there -- all put into one. It's laid out on a platter for me. All I've got to do is execute and that's what we did today."

DID YOU HAVE ANY CLOSE CALLS?

"The only one we had was when the No. 15 (Michel Jourdain Jr.) and the No. 5 (Kyle Busch) got together off of Turn 4. There was just a lot of smoke. But we knew we had to be patient. I think Kyle was in a big hurry to get to the front, which is understandable. Once you get there, it's hard to pass. So he wanted to get there probably a little bit too soon. We just sat back there and saved and saved and saved. When I had a big enough cushion, I just backed it down quite a bit. That way, if we ever came down to a green-white-checkered (finish) I had enough tires to pull away. And that's what we did."

ON HIS PIT STRATEGY

"If I see somebody else doing something, I start to panic and I wonder what's going on and why they are doing that. When Boris stayed out there for as long as he did, I started to wonder what he was doing. Is there something that he doesn't know, or is there something that we don't know? Fortunately, our pit strategy, I think all the cars that finished around us are guys who were on the same strategy as we were. You can win on strategy, but you also have to have a great can and make no mistakes and that's what we did today."

ON THE CHICANE

"If I would have had a mid-pack car, I probably would have been more concerned. But when you're up front and you're in the top two or three, the cars are spread out enough to where you can see around. However, on restarts, it is extremely hard to see around another car to see where the chicane is. Hopefully next year they'll cut them down a little bit, but not too much to where you can blow right over the top of them. It didn't really affect me too much, but I'm not really sure how anybody else's race was either."

ON HAVING THE MEXICAN FANS RECOGNIZE THE AMERICAN DRIVERS

"I think they definitely know our names a whole lot better this year. Just walking through the garage and they call me by my name and I don't even have my suit on, that's a great thing. I hope they look forward to us coming as much as we look forward to coming here. If we're here from now on, that would suit me just fine."

WHAT IS YOUR OPINION ON NASCAR THROWING THE YELLOW FLAGS? SHOULDN'T THERE BE CONSISTENCY WITH THAT?

"Yeah, it's hard to tell. I didn't even see one spin the entire race from where I was. But a lot of times a caution would come out and I'd ask what it was for. But I didn't want to see cautions there at the end. But they try to make the best judgment calls they can, but I'd hate to be in their shoes."

ON RACING OUTSIDE OF THE U.S.

"I think racing out of the country is definitely broadening NASCAR's future. I think a lot of people didn't want to go out of the country. They were afraid it would get out of hand. But it's just great. It's got new media here. It's a great deal for everyone -- for Mexico and for the U.S."

WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT THE MEXICAN DRIVERS IN GENERAL?

"They're so hard to beat. They know this race track like the back of their hand. It's amazing how well they do in race cars they don't race very much. I know how hard it was last year getting in a Busch car coming here for my third race and not really knowing what I was doing. But those guys can adapt that quick. It's amazing."

WOULD YOU LIKE TO SEE THE CUP SERIES COME TO MEXICO CITY?

"Since I run both Cup and Busch, I'd love to come here. I think it won't be long before NASCAR reaches out and goes somewhere outside the country. Hopefully they'll pick this race track. It's a great race track and you've got everything you need here. On top of that, we've got great hotel accommodations. It's a fun place to be."

-gm racing

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series NASCAR XFINITY
Drivers Boris Said , Kyle Busch , Michel Jourdain