The Frontstretch: Running Their Mouth : The Jim Stewart 400 by Beth Lunkenheimer -- Monday May 7, 2007

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Running Their Mouth : The Jim Stewart 400

Beth Lunkenheimer · Monday May 7, 2007

 

Editor's Note : Each week, we'll go through all the media reports, interviews, PR, and our own stuff to find the best quotes from the Nextel Cup race that best captures the story of how the weekend unfolded, straight from the drivers themselves. This week, here's a sneak peek at what Jeff Gordon, Bobby Labonte, and others were thinking after The Jim Stewart 400.

“This means the world to me to win here (at Richmond). We haven’t been that strong here. It reminds me a lot of Indy last year where we came back and we were able to beat a track that’s tough on us. I was hoping one-two-three for Hendrick Motorsports…it was awesome racing with my teammate Kyle Busch.” Jimmie Johnson

"I'm very disappointed we let that race get away, but that's why they call it racing. We've got to be smart on pit road, too. We had a good car and the team worked well on pit stops. We just decided to pit at the wrong time. We might have been able to hold off the Hendrick Brigade, but we ended up fifth and it was a nice points day for us and we'll go on to the next one. We're out there working hard and I know our fans are cheering for us.” Kurt Busch who finished 5th

"We had a good run, for sure, in this Alltel Dodge. Both Penske cars did. Kurt was definitely a little bit better than me for most of the day, but the guys did a good job playing strategy and everything else to get ahead of those guys. It was almost a Top 5 and that would have been nice, but it was a good run for us nevertheless." Ryan Newman

"We made up three laps last week at Talladega and finished 20th, and we made up a lap today and finished 15th. Maybe if we keep that up, we'll stay on the lead lap and get a Top 10 soon. We definitely weren't good enough today, but we're making progress. Maybe we should have stayed out for track position a couple of times, but we kept pitting trying to make the car better. Now we're heading to Darlington, and that's going to be a hard race. You never expect Darlington to be easy." Bobby Labonte

“Our Reese’s Chevrolet was pretty much the class of the field and we screwed it up. Yeah, it’s a good thing that we crashed because it was going to be a no contest – the Reese’s Chevrolet was really good and it’s just unfortunate.” Kevin Harvick

“The car was pretty decent there, early on. We just got loose on that long middle run and it hurt us. We couldn’t ever really get it fixed and we lost track position. There are positive signs, though. We ran strong and led a lap and there are things to build on. We just kind of fell off there at some point. But, we can fix that.” Tony Raines

“Our race wasn’t what we wanted. We made the race and we ran — and we were able to get plenty of feedback for the next time, if we get to run. That’s the first race for me in this car and the first race for the guys at Wyler Racing. I’ll call it the ‘new car’ now – we can’t call it the ‘Car of Tomorrow’ because we are racing it right now. It’s different to drive, but I think it’s not as bad as everyone says. It will get better when we get the set-up, but it wasn’t terrible.” Johnny Benson

"I feel like we've got 20th-place cars or so and we're just getting good pit stops and calling the race good and not getting in accidents and finishing 10th with them. We've got a long ways to go with these cars. I don't know. We just can't keep up." Matt Kenseth

"I felt pretty good about the car. I wouldn't change much if I had it to go over again. I was relatively happy with it, and it was better than Phoenix." Greg Biffle

“We’ve got to be proud of that. This has been one of our worst tracks. To come out here in the Top 5 just tells you what kind of improvements we’ve made with the DuPont Chevrolet team. At one time, I thought we had the car to beat, and then we made some adjustments trying to keep up with the changing conditions of the track and just lost it. Jeff Gordon

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M. B. Voelker
05/08/2007 11:14 AM
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I liked the one where Kyle Busch said that Hendrick and Chevy wanted him to like the COT. But I don’t have the exact wording.

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