MONSTER ENERGY NASCAR CUP SERIES
DAYTONA 500 QUALIFYING
DAYTONA INTERNATIONAL SPEEDWAY
TEAM CHEVY NOTES AND QUOTES
FEBRUARY 19, 2017
CHASE ELLIOTT, NO. 24 NAPA AUTO PARTS CHEVROLET SS – POLE WINNER:
CONGRATULATIONS ON BACK-TO-BACK POLES. THIS IS BIG FOR YOU.
“Yeah, this is really cool. I’m just happy for our NAPA team and it’s great to have Napa on board this weekend; and a big thanks to the Hendrick engine shop and Chevrolet. Everybody at Hendrick Motorsports has done a lot of work this off-season. This team definitely has a knack for these plate tracks as they showed with Jeff Gordon and then last year with here and Talladega. But that stuff doesn’t just happen by staying the same as everybody knows. Everyone is always trying to get better and make their cars better and faster; and the engine shop is always finding new things. So, I think that’s just proof that they’re improving with everybody else and taking that next step, which is really impressive. I’m happy to be a part of it and hopefully we can run good next Sunday.”
YOU WEREN’T ABLE TO CAPITALIZE ON THAT STARTING SPOT LAST YEAR. HOW HAVE YOU MATURED AS A RESTRICTOR PLATE DRIVER TO WHERE YOU CAN SCORE YOUR FIRST DAYTONA 500 ON SUNDAY?
“Well, we finished our first Cup race at Daytona today, which was good. We didn’t win the race, obviously, but we finished. Unfortunately, we tore up a lot of stuff here last year. So I hope we can just try to get to the end of the 500 next. We’ve obviously got to get through the Duels, first. But, just making it to the end and having yourself in position, obviously we’d love to have a shot to win this thing. So, it would be great and I think we have a car that can do it. So, we’ll find out.”
DALE EARNHARDT JR., NO. 88 NATIONWIDE CHEVROLET SS – QUALIFIED 2ND
BY THAT PERFORMANCE, YOU NEVER WOULD HAVE KNOWN YOU’VE BEEN OUT OF A RACE CAR FOR 7 MONTHS. HOW GOOD DOES THAT FEEL?
“It feels good. I think the guys are a little bit disappointed. They really wanted to get the pole. I’m disappointed too, but am absolutely thrilled to have an all-Hendrick Motorsports front row. And we’ll work on the balance practice a lot this week and make sure it’s a good handling car for the race. But, it’s a good way to start the week.”