NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES
SAMSUNG MOBILE 500
TEXAS MOTOR SPEEDWAY
TEAM CHEVY DRIVER RACE NOTES & QUOTES
APRIL 9, 2011
MARK MARTIN, NO. 5 GODADDY.COM CHEVROLET – Sidelined in a multi-car accident on lap 215:
“There was just a big pile-up in front of us. I think Martin (Truex Jr.) got put in the wall and a couple of others. It’s just racing.”
WHAT HAPPENED? “I don’t know. I didn’t see. They just started wrecking in front of me and I piled in it. Couldn’t stop.”
IT LOOKED LIKE A HARD HIT, WAS IT? “Yes, it was real hard. But, I’m fine, everything is good. We were kind of having a tough night there and it ended up short.”
YOU SAID EARLIER THIS WEEK IT’S NOT THE SPEED THAT’S INVOLVED IN THESE CRASHES, BUT YOU’RE FEELING A LOSS OF CONTROL. WAS THAT THE CASE TONIGHT?
“Yeah, I didn’t have any steering after the first hit, so I hit the outside and hit the inside twice. That’s what you have sometimes when you race, you know? But we were having a tough night and then it ended up short for us.”
REGAN SMITH, NO. 78 FARMAMERICAN.ORG CHEVROLET – Sidelined in a multi-car accident on lap 215:
ON THE ON-TRACK CONTACT: “Disappointing. Had a good car. We had a pit road penalty that really hurt us. Shouldn’t have been that far back anyways. It is what it is. The Furniture Row Chevy guys have been doing a great job, We just have crap luck right now.”
JIMMIE JOHNSON, NO. 48 LOWE’S/KOBALT TOOLS CHEVROLET – Finished 8th
ON THE RACE:
“Man, we really were excited leaving practice yesterday. And we just had a really loose car all day and all night. We salvaged a decent finish out of it, but that one threw us for a loop. We qualified well, all our practices were great, and we were expecting a good run and well, we had a decent run.”
CLINT BOWYER, NO. 33 CHEERIOS/HAMBURGER HELPER CHEVROLET – Finished 2nd:
IS THAT CONTACT WITH BRIAN VICKERS GOING TO HAUNT YOU FOR A WHILE?
“Yeah, that was my fault. I shouldn’t have stuck it in there. Track position is so big. You come up on those lappers it hurts you so bad that it almost killed my chances to even have a finishing day. But hats off to Matt Kenseth. He was the class of the field. He deserved to win the race. We were definitely a second-place car. There is so much confidence and so much momentum I see with this race team. I’ve got to thank Cheerios and BB&T and Chevrolet and everybody that helps us with this program. I feel optimistic and with good runs like that, we’ll get it done.”
WHAT AN AMAZING SAVE AND YOUR BEST FINISH AT TEXAS BUT I WOULD IMAGINE THAT YOU WILL GO TO BED TONIGHT THINKING THAT COWBOY HAT WOULD HAVE LOOKED GOOD ON ME. “Yeah, dangit. You know that was my fault. Totally my fault. You come up on those lappers and they hold you up so bad and Matt (Kenseth) started to catch me and I was pressed and trying to get around him and he gave me room and I just slid up and got into him. Man I thought that was going to end our day completely. Really proud Shane Wilson, everybody on this Cheerios/Hamburger Helper Chevrolet. Everybody that is involved with this program, BB&T, SKF, Menards, Chevrolet, everybody. We’re trying to get some more sponsorship for the end of the year for this thing. All the spots aren’t filled and hopefully good runs like that will get the job done.”
DALE EARNHARDT JR., NO. 88 AMP ENERGY/NATIONAL GUARD CHEVROLET – Finished 9th
PHYSICALLY, A LOT OF GUYS ARE TIRED. HOW WAS YOUR NIGHT?
“I’m pretty satisfied. I would have liked to finish a couple of spots higher; maybe a 5th or so. But the balance on the car was going too tight on the second to the last run and then it got loose on the last run. We had a little bit of a rough stop there one time and lost some track position. We had a pretty good car though. I was real happy with our speed and the way we were able to come through the field was great. It was really hot. But, I was ok near the end. That long green flag near the middle was getting humid. But we cooled off there under the cautions and everything was fine toward the end.”
ANOTHER TOP-10, HAS TO FEEL GOOD: “That is how good the team is. We just ain’t made many real big mistakes. We had a much better car tonight. We had a terrible pit stop there one time and lost track position. The last two runs we made adjustments that didn’t suit the car too well. We went too tight then that last run we jumped back over the fence and was too loose. Still, a good car. Happy with the way we run.”
YOU RACED PRETTY HARD WITH (DAVID) REGAN A COUPLE OF TIMES DURING THE RACE, WHAT WAS GOING ON THERE? “Yea, I was getting frustrated there but he was doing what he’s supposed to do. I was getting mad, but I want the spot, man. The hell with running behind him. I want to be in front of him. My car was way faster than his. I just couldn’t get by him. He was running a good line and I was too loose on the bottom.”
DO YOU FEEL LIKE AT THIS POINT IF YOU DON’T GET A TOP-10, IT IS A LET DOWN BECAUSE OF HOW GOOD YOU GUYS HAVE BEEN RUNNING? “Every week that I have ever ran, if I don’t run where I think I should, it is a letdown to me. So, I’d say yea.”
PAUL MENARD, NO. 27 QUAKER STATE/MENARDS CHEVROLET, FINISHED 5TH: ANOTHER GOOD RUN TONIGHT: “We have had a fast car all weekend. Quaker State came on board and we have some different colors on the car, which is pretty neat. Neat debut for them. Didn’t qualify as well as we hoped so we had to do a little strategy with two tires and stuff to get some track position. But, made a lot of small adjustments all night long. Just trying to keep up with the sun going down. The track freed up a little bit. If the biggest problem I have is coming out of the box with a brand new race team this year, we’re looking good.”
MUST FEEL GOOD AFTER THE DISAPPOINTING WEEKEND AT MARTINSVILLE: “Martinsville is Martinsville. We struggled the first run and got a punctured radiator. We fought back on the lead lap. We had a good car it just wasn’t met to be. We don’t go there for awhile. Looking forward to a lot of these 1.5-miles coming up. Charlotte is going to be good for us I think. I am looking forward to Talladega.”
GIL MARTIN, CREW CHIEF OF THE NO. 29 BUDWEISER CHEVROLET. FINISHED 20TH:
THE STREAK HAD TO COME TO AN END, BUT I BET THIS ISN’T WHAT YOU EXPECTED AT TEXAS: “No. It’s not, but it’s not the end of the world either. We’ve had a good race every race this year. Sooner or later you’re going to have a bad one. We’ll bounce back from it.”
DOES THIS GIVE YOU ANY CONCERN FOR THE NEXT MILE-AND-A-HALF RACE TRACK? “No, not at all. It’s just one of those things that happens. We’ll come back from it. We’re tough.”
THE OTHER THREE RCR TEAMMATES WERE ALL TOP 12 AND YOUR TEAM JUST WON TWO IN A ROW. WHAT DOES THAT SAY ABOUT RCR? “I just think it shows how strong our whole organization is. All the cars have run good every week, just the other three guys, especially the No. 31, have had some bad luck. Tonight they were able to put a pretty decent finish together. It just shows that none of the teams are weak and that they’re all pretty strong. We’ve just been able to put some of them together at the end.”
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