NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES
BANK OF AMERICA 500
CHARLOTTE MOTOR SPEEDWAY
TEAM CHEVY DRIVER QUALIFYING PRESS CONFERENCE TRANSCRIPT
OCTOBER 13, 2011
Tony Stewart Wins the Pole at Charlotte Motor Speedway
CHARLOTTE – (October 13, 2011) – For 13th time in his NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) career, Tony Stewart will lead the 43-car field to the green flag.
With a lap of 28.131seconds, 191.959 mph behind the wheel of his No. 14 Mobil 1/Office Depot Chevrolet, the two-time NSCS champion captured the pole at Charlotte Motor Speedway for Saturday night’s Bank of America 500.
Team Chevy will have four drivers starting in the top-10. Ryan Newman, No. 39 Cookies for Kid’s Cancer/Gene Haas Foundation Chevrolet will start in sixth position. Paul Menard, No. 27 Certain Teed/Menards Chevrolet, will roll off seventh.
Five-time defending NSCS champion Jimmie Johnson, No. 48 Lowe’s/Chevy 100th Anniversary Chevrolet, will start ninth in the 334-lap/501 mile race, the fifth in the 2011 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup.
Other Team Chevy drivers in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup qualified as follows: Kevin Harvick, No. 29 Jimmy John’s Chevrolet -14th; Dale Earnhardt, Jr., No. 88 AMP Energy/National Guard/Chevy 100th Anniversary Chevrolet-15th and four-time NSCS champion Jeff Gordon, No. 24 Drive To End Hunger/Chevy 100th Anniversary Chevrolet-23rd.
The race is scheduled to start Saturday night at 7:30 p.m. ET with live coverage on ABC TV, PRN Radio and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio Channel 90.
TONY STEWART, NO. 24 MOBIL 1/OFFICE DEPOT CHEVROLET – POLE WINNER
QUALIFYING PRESS CONFERENCE TRANSCRIPT:
TALK ABOUT TERRIFIC QUALIFYING LAP, BIG RACE HERE SATURDAY NIGHT 500 MILES, TALK ABOUT STARTING THE RACE UP-FRONT:
“That was a pretty cool lap; the hard part is typically we see the pace pick up a little more in qualifying than we say tonight. You just didn’t know what to think. There were guys that broke even or may have barely picked up a little bit or lost a little bit in their lap and that are not what you normally see here. You normally see a large, large pick up from practice speeds to qualifying in the evening here, but just was happy with the lap. I felt like we had a good pick up, definitely had a really good lap obviously, but you sit there after that lap and felt like hopefully we had something that was going to be a top five or six run there but, it was definitely better than we thought after we got out of the car.”
YOU SAID IT WAS ONE OF THE BEST CARS YOU HAVE UNLOADED HERE IN A LONG TIME. SAFE TO PICK YOU THIS WEEK FOR MY FANTASY TEAM?
“That is why they call it fantasy, you never know. It is definitely been a good start to the weekend. The first run we made today was in race trim and that was the best balance we had taken off the truck here in a long time. Darian ( Grubb) thought the pace was really good, what we ran there and I felt comfortable in the car, so it definitely got the day started off on the right foot for sure, when we started doing our qualifying runs, we were pretty decent in speed too. You never know. I have had runs here in qualifying where I have missed it and missed my marks doing something to try to gain that extra time that you think you are going to need and made mistakes. Tonight I tried to duplicate my lap that I ran in practice and just get a little bit more out of it versus trying to get that big chunk like we were used to in the past. It has definitely been a good start to the weekend. I have never got into the fantasy anything, I watched fantasy island as a kid, that is about as much fantasy as I have had.”
WHY DO YOU THINK THE TRACK DIDN’T PICK UP FROM PRACTICE TODAY AND ARE YOU SURPRISED THAT IN THE TOP THREE SPOTS, NO ONE CAME FROM THE LAST TEN GUYS THAT WENT OUT?
“I am surprised, I was surprised when we got out of the car, when you are on top of the board like that you start paying a little more attention obviously you are more concerned about what is going on there than if you have missed it in your qualifying run, but I honestly don’t know. I don’t know why guys didn’t pick up, I was watching from the motor home and was watching guys lap times and looking at the sheet and seeing what they had practiced and it just wasn’t as much as what we had seen. I think obviously we had a lot of cloud cover today and cool temperatures here in the last couple of days. I don’t think the track changed as much and got as hot during the day as what we typically see here so, I think that is the reason we did have the big pick-ups. You still anticipate that at night the guys are going to pick up speed. It just seems like outside the air is just a little muggier right now and I don’t know if that hurt horse-power and created more drag and just evened anything out. Guys that made gains in their car for qualifying but the temperature and humidity and air probably equaled it back out but it makes our lap that much better of a lap knowing that we were able to gain what we did.”
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