JAMIE MCMURRAY LEADS TEAM CHEVY IN QUALIFYING AT WATKINS GLEN
WATKINS GLEN, NY – August 10, 2013 – For the 12th time this season the drivers in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series set a new track record. Ten drivers broke through the old threshold with speeds toping 128 mph. Those breaking the old record included Jamie McMurray, No. 1 McDonald’s/Monopoly Chevrolet SS and Paul Menard, No. 27 Menards/Splash Chevrolet SS who placed their Chevys in the Top 10 for Sunday’s Cheez-It 355 at Watkins Glen International. Drivers will take on the twists and turns of the 2.45-mile course as they compete in round 22 of the 36-race season. With only five races until the field is set for the Chase, a solid run at ‘The Glen’ this weekend is crucial for the Bowtie teams.
McMurray will roll off the starting grid in the sixth position in his No. 1 Chevrolet. He was the road course pole sitter earlier this year at Sonoma Raceway. Menard will follow McMurray in his No. 27 Chevy SS starting from the seventh position. This marks the fifth time this season Menard will start inside the top 10.
Other Team Chevy members starting in the top-20 are: Juan Pablo Montoya, No. 42 Target Chevrolet SS – 11th, Kurt Busch, No. 78 Furniture Row Racing/Denver Mattress Chevrolet SS – 13th, Ryan Newman, No. 39 Haas Automation 30th Anniversary Chevrolet SS – 14th, Jimmie Johnson, No. 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet SS – 18th and Kasey Kahne, No. 5 Farmers Insurance Chevrolet SS – 19th.
Marcos Ambrose (Ford) was the pole winner, Clint Bowyer (Toyota) was second, Martin Truex, Jr. (Toyota) was third, AJ Allmendinger (Toyota) was fourth and Kyle Busch (Toyota) was fifth to round out the Top 5.
The Cheez-It 355 at The Glen takes the green flag on Sunday, August 11th at 1:00 p.m. ET, and will be aired live on ESPN.
JAMIE MCMURRAY, NO. 1 MCDONALD’S/MONOPOLY CHEVROLET SS – QUALIFIED SIXTH
ON HIS RUN:
“Well, our McDonald’s/Monopoly Chevy just didn’t have the grip. I went into Turn 1 the second lap and I could just tell I didn’t have the grip I did the previous lap. And so, it was somewhat of a waste of time to run through the remainder of the lap knowing that you’re going to go slower. It was a pretty good lap. I gave up quite a bit through the esses. The track had a fair bit more grip than what it had yesterday. And where the water was in the bottom of Turn 2, I had never run against that curb. And today there wasn’t water. So I got the car low enough, but I just couldn’t get turned back to the left. I was a little bit loose and it doesn’t look like it on TV, but that is one of the most thrilling corners I feel like we have on our whole circuit because you’re sliding off towards that guardrail. The car is hung out and it takes a lot of courage to run through there flat-out. I just couldn’t get pulled back to the left enough. But it was a good lap. We qualified on the pole at Sonoma, so I felt like we would qualify well here. Our race pace is a little bit off but we’re going to work on it tonight and hopefully get a good, solid run tomorrow.”
PAUL MENARD, NO. 27 MENARDS/SPLASH CHEVROLET SS – QUALIFIED SEVENTH
YOU MADE YOUR SPRINT CUP DEBUT HERE IS IT KIND OF LIKE COMING HOME?
“Yeah, man 10 years go by fast. Our first time was 10 years ago. The car is really good. We unloaded pretty happy with it yesterday, maybe lacked the speed of a lot of guys, but drove really good. I feel like a longer run 10 laps into a run we might be okay. That was a good little pick up there we will see how it stacks up.”
CAN YOU EXPLAIN WHAT KIND OF FEEL YOU ARE LOOKING FOR ON A ROAD COURSE VERSUS AN OVAL?
“A place like this you just need it to stay under you. I mean you are in the gas so hard out of these corners that you start burning rear tires off. Same as Sonoma and any of these road courses, you start burning rear tires off it just keeps getting worse and worse. You need a car that is pretty well balanced even if the speed is not quite there. I feel like our car is really balanced and it will be good on a long run.”
KURT BUSCH, NO. 78 FURNITURE ROW RACING/DENVER MATTRESS CHEVROLET SS – QUALIFIED 13TH
ON HIS QUALIFYING LAP:
“Just trying to get a read on our front tires and we didn’t quite carry enough speed through each of the corners. So when you add up all the corners and you are off a little bit in each corner you are going to add up to an awful lot that you are off on lap time.”
RYAN NEWMAN, NO. 39 HAAS AUTOMATION 30TH ANNIVERSARY CHEVROLET SS – QUALIFIED 14TH
ON HIS LAP:
“It was a good lap. I obviously went out in an earlier group. We’ve just been struggling a little bit for speed. Hopefully we have a better long run car than a short run car. It’s been a bit of a speed struggle, I would say. Being P2 in your group isn’t bad, but that’s better than what is was in practice; let’s put it that way.”
JIMMIE JOHNSON, NO. 48 LOWE’S CHEVROLET SS – QUALIFIED 18TH
ON HIS QUALIFYING LAP:
“It didn’t go as planned. It was a lot harder to get around the track than I expected from what we had yesterday.”
KASEY KAHNE, NO. 5 FARMERS INSURANCE CHEVROLET SS – QUALIFIED 19TH
HOW WOULD YOU ASSESS THAT QUALIFYING SESSION?
“I thought it was all right. It was pretty loose to the right on corner exits; I didn’t get down any of the straightaways real well. It screwed us up a little bit for time. But I thought the car felt really pretty balanced and something that will be nice to race tomorrow. So, this is a tough track for me, but I don’t think we’re as far off as it might look.”
WHAT DO YOU THINK YOU CAN TAKE FROM RUNNING IN THE NATIONWIDE SERIES RACE THIS AFTERNOON TO THE CUP RACE TOMORROW?
“I think just practice. Just running this track and working on braking and just trying to get speed in every corner; a little bit here and a little bit there, and you can get some pretty good times. I did that year. I thought it helped for Sunday’s race. So we’ll see how today goes and try to help it for tomorrow.”
MAX PAPIS, NO. 14 RUSH TRUCK CENTERS/MOBIL 1 CHEVROLET SS – QUALIFIED 29TH
TALK ABOUT YOUR LAP:
“The biggest obstacle for me was definitely going to be qualifying because I don’t do this very often. I got a little too greedy in turn two. I definitely got it better on the third lap, but the tires were gone. I have really good confidence. I improved my speed every time. Definitely qualifying I left something on the table. Maybe is not as much as it felt.”
DID YOU DO A QUALIFYING RUN IN PRACTICE YESTERDAY?
“No qualifying run. Obviously that is something for someone like me who doesn’t have a chance to do this every time it’s much more than a hurdle. I’m proud of my effort and I’m proud of how much better we made the car. I really feel we can do something special from where we are going to start.”
DANICA PATRICK, NO. 10 GODADDY CHEVROLET SS – QUALIFIED 35TH
ON HER LAP:
“The car turned a lot better than yesterday. It was loose, but improved from yesterday for sure. I think we’ve made good gains with the GoDaddy Chevy. I’m ready for tomorrow. It should be a good race.”