NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES
SPRINT ALL-STAR RACE
CHARLOTTE MOTOR SPEEDWAY
TEAM CHEVY QUALIFYING NOTES AND QUOTES
MAY 17, 2013
KURT BUSCH WILL START ON THE FRONT ROW FOR SATURDAY NIGHT’S ALL-STAR RACE
CONCORD, N.C. – May 17, 2013 – Kurt Busch, No. 78 Furniture Row/Sealy Chevrolet SS, posted the second-fastest time of the 19 drivers who have earned spots in the 29th NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Busch ran a time of 111.297 seconds and average speed of 144.068 mph in the unique qualifying format that included three laps and a four-tire pit stop.
With Busch on the front row, there are a total of three Team Chevy drivers who will start tomorrow night’s non-points race in the top-10. Kasey Kahne, No. 5 Farmers Chevrolet SS, qualified ninth and his Hendrick Motorsports teammate Jeff Gordon, No. 24 Cromax Pro Chevrolet SS, will start 10th. So far, a total of eight Chevrolet SS drivers have already earned spots for tomorrow night’s event. Two more drivers will race their way in via the Sprint Showdown race, while one more will be voted in by the fans to round out a 22-car field for the All-Star race.
Martin Truex, Jr. (Toyota) won the pole for the Sprint Showdown while Earnhardt Ganassi drivers Jamie McMurray, No. 1 Bass Pro Shops/National Wild Turkey Foundation Chevrolet SS, qualified on the outside front row in second and Juan Pablo Montoya, No. 42 Target Chevrolet SS, was third.
Carl Edwards (Ford) won the pole for the All-Star race, Greg Biffle (Ford) qualified third, Kyle Busch (Toyota) was fourth, and Joey Logano (Ford) was fifth to round out the top-five starting positions.
The NASCAR Sprint All Star Race is set to start under the lights on Saturday, May 18th at 9:00 p.m. ET, and will be aired live on SPEED. The Sprint Showdown will also air on SPEED and will begin at 7:00 pm ET.
NASCAR SPRINT SHOWDOWN QUALIFYING QUOTES:
JAIME MCMURRAY, NO. 1 BASS PRO SHOPS/NATIONAL WILD TURKEY FOUNDATION CHEVROLET SS – QUALIFIED SECOND:
IT DROPPED ABOUT FOUR DEGREES. HOW ON-EDGE WAS YOUR LAP?
“It was pretty good. I got a little bit loose in Turn 3 but overall the grip from practice was a lot better. I don’t know about the rest of the teams, but for us I remember testing here when it was only 50 degrees. So to come this afternoon and test when it was 90 degrees out because it is a totally different track. It was a lot different. The set-ups we had from January were somewhat irrelevant. Out Bass Pro Chevy, I thought, was good in race trim. And I feel like this will be a good qualifying lap. I don’t know if it will be the pole, but if the sun stays out it might be.”
DANICA PATRICK, NO. 10 GODADDY CHEVROLET SS – QUALIFIED SEVENTH:
“I feel like we’ve made improvements throughout the day. We had a good debrief with Tony (Stewart) and Ryan (Newman) and I feel like maybe something that we did for qualifying might have been worth some grip in the middle of the corner in front. Hopefully this translates to a good race car; something consistent. Man, it’s just so tough in the middle of the day when it’s so hot and slippery out there. But I feel like we made some progress and hopefully we have a good race car for tomorrow. I’d love to race my way in and that’s the plan.”
NASCAR SPRINT ALL-STAR QUALIFYING QUOTES:
DALE EARNHARDT JR., NO. 88 NATIONAL GUARD CHEVROLET SS – QUALIFIED: 15TH
HOW WAS QUALIFYING WITH THE PIT STOP?
“It was pretty good. We had a loose lug nut on the left front, so I guess it’s going to cost us a lot of time. But I think I put together a good run. I liked the pit stop. I liked having the pit crew involved. Getting onto pit road speed. I liked that. It’s pretty crazy. I’m that’s not how we have to do it every week like the old days because that would definitely get your attention. You really wouldn’t be looking forward to any pit stops getting tires like we do now. But I think we did a good job. We just had a little miscue on the car on the stop, but otherwise I think we put a good show on for ourselves and I’m pretty happy about that effort. I liked practice. I thought practice was really good. I thought that we had good speed and the car has good handling. We’re just not going to get the starting position we wanted and we’re going to have to work real hard all night and kind of an uphill climb.”
JIMMIE JOHNSON, NO. 48 LOWE’S PATRIOTIC CHEVROLET SS – QUALIFIED: 18TH
COULD YOU FEEL THAT THE CAR WASN’T ABLE TO STOP?
‘Oh yeah, oh yeah. I started wheel-hopping and that was a big problem trying to get it stopped. I scared them from pit road with my entry speed. I put a big effort up there but unfortunately just didn’t have the car under control to brake its own and the back tires started bouncing at that point and I knew I wasn’t going to stop in my box. I was just trying to avoid spinning out. It was different.”
POST QUALIFYING DRIVER PRESS CONFERENCE TRANSCRIPT:
KURT BUSCH, NO. 78 FURNITURE ROW/SEALY CHEVROLET SS – QUALIFIED THIRD:
THE ALL-STAR RACE IS A BIG EVENT FOR SPRINT CUP SERIES DRIVERS TOMORROW NIGHT. DO YOU THINK YOU CAN GET TO VICTORY LANE?
“I think we’re definitely in a good position. Our team continues to define speed each and every week. To unload today and to have a good practice session and then to execute coming on top pit road at 157 mph, it’s pretty wild. It’s like a step back in time when you get a chance to throw caution to the wind and let it rip coming on pit road. It was fun. Thanks to Mike Helton and John Darby and Robin Pemberton for coming up with that rules change. When I first heard about it I was really excited and gave it my best effort. We were right there. The pit crew had a nice steady stop; it just wasn’t the fastest stop. And so we fine ourselves outside pole, but we find ourselves in a great position for being up front and for trying to win that first segment. And then to see how it goes from there. We want to be up front early in the race. It’ll now direct us in a different pattern, probably, for out pit strategy for the four segments. We just need good average finishes with the way they’re going to do the line-up on the final segment. To be in the top-five all night is where we hope to be. The guys on the team just need a nice steady night. No big drama and just have a smooth night and I think we’ll be in the mix.”
HOW DID YOU GAUGE HOW FAST YOU COULD GO ON PIT ROW? DID PRACTICE HELP YOU WITH THAT OR WERE YOU LOOKING FOR A MARK? HOW DID YOU FIGURE THAT?
“I just found a mark and used it for a braking marker like you would at a road course. And so the only thing that’s a little different is the tires only have a lap and a half of heat and the brakes have no heat at all. So in practice, the tires had more heat and the brakes had more heat so the car was going to be more consistent in practice. So I just came in a little conservative. I didn’t want to overshoot the pit box, but I think our mile per hour was 157. There was only one guy who was quicker than us getting into the pit box with that trap speed. The trap speed is one thing, and that’s what I learned in drag racing versus the whole elapsed time, and that is the deceleration rate getting into the pit box. So it was just a point that I picked. I practiced it twice and then executed on the third time.
ASSUMING THAT CARL EDWARDS WAS JOKING, THIS IS NOT A GOOD SYSTEM FOR A REGULAR RACE, IS IT?
“I don’t know what Carl Edwards said.”
HE SAID, ‘HEY, WE COULD DO THIS EVERY WEEKEND’. THAT’S PROBABLY NOT A GOOD IDEA, RIGHT?
“Yeah, that’s one of the remarks I made earlier about throwing caution to the wind and that’s because we have a controlled environment with only one car on pit road at a time and the crew guys had to wait until the car came to a complete stop. Yeah, we can’t have ca
rs doing 157 miles an hour on the entry to pit road. Imagine being in that 43rd box and having cars zip by you that fast. It was just a fun treat to do this All-Star weekend. It’s just the whole atmosphere.
“Tonight is military appreciation night at Furniture Row so I’m headed from here to the store, which is just a couple of miles away, to shake hands with our military guys and have a soda pop with them. We’re running the banner that’s on the cars supporting our military and so we hope we’re able to deliver for those guys and support our troops. It’s always fun to kick it off this weekend with Armed Forces Day on Saturday and with next week being Memorial Day. I’ve just got to thank Barney Visser and this whole team. We’re definitely finding some speed and we’re showing some results. It’s been a good feeling.”
WILL THERE BE A PROBLEM RE-ADJUSTING WHEN YOU HAVE TO GO BACK TO THE OLD SPEED LIMIT ON PIT ROAD? DO YOU THINK IT WILL CAUSE PEOPLE TO SPEED IN THE NEXT RACE?
“Well, it’s just the green-flag stops that will cross your mind when that happens. But for the All-Star race, there’s a caution every 20 laps, I think we’ll have everybody under control. But it was just fun to do it. It was fun to do something different and give a moment of throwback when speeds were above 150 coming on pit road. It was pretty wild. Edwards and those guys executed well and their pit stop I think was 1.2-seconds quicker than ours and they beat us by 1.1. It was definitely fun challenging the other drivers to go fast on pit road.”
I UNDERSTAND YOU GOT YOUR OPPORTUNITY IN LAS VEGAS IN LATE MODELS BECAUSE OF A TRAGEDY IN THE DICK TRICKLE FAMILY. YOU ACTUALLY RACED AGAINST DICK. CAN YOU TALK ABOUT THAT AND GIVE US YOUR THOUGHTS ON HIM AND HIS PASSING?
“You know, when I was growing up running in Vegas the Trickle family was the racing family in the city. It was Chuck Trickle was the dad, Chris Trickle was the son, and they were known as the big name. And we always looked up to those guys on how they raced and how their demeanor was outside of the car and inside the car. Yeah, I did get a chance to race against Dick Trickle once. It was at Slinger Speedway in Wisconsin. He was there in a driver’s meeting. It’s 3:30 in the afternoon and he’s got a cigarette in one hand and he’s got his coffee in the other hand and we hung out and shared some stories.
“And just all those stories you heard about Dick, it made you think that wow, one person has done all of this. He’s lived an extraordinary life and it was always fun when he was at the track. And when you were there racing against him, you knew he was always going to have a smile on his face. Jeff Gordon always told the story on when you knew you were going back to green when the cigarette butt came flying out the window and hitting the track. And so there are a lot of good Dick Trickle stories out there. The boys on ESPN were always showing his highlights even though he was running 38th. It would just get a chuckle about his name. But he was a true hero on the short tracks. You don’t win a thousand races by accident. A guy that comes up in my mind today that really takes over for short track America with a name in history like that is Steve Kinser. And we’re all going to miss Dick. I need to find Chuck Trickle. I need to reach out to him.
“I got my opportunity in Late Models when Chris Trickle was tragically shot in a drive-by shooting in Las Vegas. I was actually away at college in Tucson, Arizona and the phone rang and they said that Chris had been in an accident. Of upmost concern of course was coming back to see him in the hospital and to hold his hand and to try to help him through it. But he never was able to pull through. He spent over 13 months in a coma from the injury. And that opened up the door for me to be able to jump in that car and take it to a championship in the Southwest Tour. So it’s tough to lose another Trickle. That’s to say the least.”
NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES