QUAKER STATE 400
TEAM CHEVY DRIVER POST-QUALIFYING PRESS CONFERENCE TRANSCRIPT
JUNE 29, 2012
TEAM CHEVY DRIVER JIMMIE JOHNSON SCORES FIRST POLE SINCE SEPTEMBER 2010
KEVIN HARVICK AND RYAN NEWMAN ALSO SCORE TOP TEN STARTING POSITIONS
SPARTA, KY – June 29, 2012 – Jimmie Johnson earned his first pole position in almost two years in posting the fastest time in qualifying today at Kentucky Speedway for Saturday night’s Quaker State 400. Johnson ran a lap of 181.818 mph in 29.700 seconds in his No. 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet. This will mark his sixth top five start of 2012 in 17 races.
Richard Childress Racing driver Kevin Harvick, No. 29 Budweiser Folds of Honor Chevrolet, turned the fourth fastest time in today’s qualifying session and Ryan Newman, No. 39 Stewart Haas Racing Tornados Chevrolet, will roll off fifth in Saturday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event.
Kyle Busch (Toyota) qualified second and Denny Hamlin (FedEx Express Toyota) qualified third to round out the top five starting spots.
Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the No. Diet Mountain Dew/National Guard Chevy qualified 7th, Jeff Gordon, No. 24 Drive to End Hunger Chevy qualified 9th, giving Team Chevy five of the top 10 starting positions.
Quaker State 400 is tomorrow Saturday, June 30, 2012 at 6:30 PM EST on TNT.
JIMMIE JOHNSON, NO. 48 LOWE’S DOVER WHITE CHEVROLET – POLE WINNER
ON HIS QUALIFYING EFFORT:
“I felt like if I got through one well, I could charge the rest of the track and I got through there pretty good and it wasn’t perfect but I got through there well and then knowing that I had the wind head on the car planting the race car going into three I just bombed it in there and jumped on the gas real hard and the car rotated around and pointed off of four really nice. So happy to get the pole, we have been second quite a bit and we have been off quite a bit the past few times over the last year-and-a-half so it’s nice to win the pole and get that great starting spot and pit road pick and we had a cool paint scheme on the car so that is fun. We will give that thing a good run tomorrow night.”
WHAT WAS YOUR TAKE WHEN THE WIND OF THE STORM CAME?
“I was in my motorhome watching qualifying on television and the bus started shaking real bad and I thought about it and thought it should be doing that. TV was a little behind and they weren’t talking about winds so I thought there for a minute that somebody backed into our motorhome and hit it so I opened the door to look out and when I opened the door, the wind almost took the door off the hinges and I was like, okay, I don’t know what is going on and there was a lot of stuff blowing around at that point.”
DO YOU SEE STARTING UP FRONT AT THIS TRACK MORE OF AN ADVANTAGE OVER OTHER PLACES AND IF SO, WHY?
“Yes, it really is the name of the game wherever we go. Typically the higher the speeds, the more important track position is. Like the old Michigan, you could work traffic a little bit because there was so much room on the race track but there is a relatively narrow groove here on the race track, like 2 or 3 cars wide, and the speeds are really high. So when that happens, it’s tough to pass so starting position and track position in general is very important.”
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