The Frontstretch: Running Their Mouth: Autism Speaks 400 presented by Hershey's Milk & Milkshakes by Summer Bedgood -- Monday May 17, 2010

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Welcome to Running Their Mouth! Each week, we’ll go through media reports, interviews, PR, and all of our own stuff to find the best quotes from the Sprint Cup race, capturing the story of how the weekend unfolded. It’s the most original commentary you’ll ever find: the truth, coming straight out of the mouths of the drivers, crew members, and car owners themselves. This week, here’s a sneak peek at what they all were thinking following the Autism Speaks 400 at Dover International Speedway:

“This is a long race and it’s very hard to stay patient, especially if you’re a car battling for 10th, 12th, 15th because you know the leader is coming. You know they’re coming up behind you. But, today we just — we ran fourth so I wasn’t too worried about it. We had a good race car. We had a top-four race car. It was fast, it was just a little bit unbalanced. So as soon as we got the balance right the thing really came to life and took off. I can’t thank Dave (Rogers, crew chief) enough. He does such a phenomenal job with this team and he’s doing such a great job for all of us. The M&M’s people are here today, Combos was here yesterday — I wish it was a triple, but I’d rather miss out Friday to get one Sunday.” Kyle Busch, race winner

“I’m just real proud of this race team, real proud of Kyle for never giving up and putting ourselves in position to win it at the end.” Dave Rogers, winning crew chief

“We’re just getting started really here. I’m thrilled that the last seven, eight weeks have gone so well for us, but the reality is that can all turn in a week. That’s one of the things about pro sports, the two that I’ve been in, and particularly this sport, we’ve got great teams out there we’ve talked about, the 48 (Jimmie Johnson), and to say that we’re there would be ridiculous. They pretty much dominated things. They had a great car again today. I think we’re just getting started, but it’s exciting for us to know that we have over the last eight or nine weeks started to get on a roll.” Joe Gibbs, winning team owner

“The track is so rubbered-up that if you ever got out of the groove you’d just all but wreck. It was just crazy how much rubber was on the track. It really made it hard to pass.” Jeff Burton, finished second

“We made our way to about 15th and there were like 18 cars on the lead lap. We were within a couple seconds of getting lapped. In that pit stop we decided to take two and everybody else got four. That brought us out of the pits third and that was really the main call that got us where we were. It took us out of jeopardy of being a lap down. That call right there was the key.” Matt Kenseth, finished third

“Our team is just clicking right now. We’re getting good finishes on our worst race track and that’s what we need to do. It was a step in the right direction for sure.” Denny Hamlin, finished fourth

“We started off not very good, but in the long runs we would get better. I’m proud of my guys. I think they did a great job. This will help us in the points a little bit. We had to stop the bleeding at some point and hopefully we’ve done it this time.” David Reutimann, finished fifth

“I still feel we need something. I don’t know what that is though. It just seems like we are a little off the other three organizations. The competition is so tough that if you get a little behind it is hard to break through and get that win. I think we are maybe a half a step or step behind.” Matt Kenseth on whether Ford is closing the gap against the competition

“You know after finishing 22nd three weeks in a row I feel like this was a pretty good day for us. It was a hard fought battle.” Greg Biffle, finished sixth

Dover was tough on all the competitors on Sunday, but Kyle Busch was able to pull away at the end.

“I think in the big picture it fits well for us because everybody knows that Darlington, Charlotte, and Dover are probably our three biggest struggles and the month of May has always been tough for us and so far we have got three top tens in (May). So we just have to do that one more time in Charlotte and then we can go back to being comfortable at the race tracks that we like going to.” Points leader Kevin Harvick, finished seventh

“We had one run in the race there when we came into the pits third or fourth there on a caution, put four (tires) on and all of a sudden we go back out and we go to the last car on the lead lap. We raised the track bar an eighth of an inch and that doesn’t make it that bad. But it’s definitely it’s a step in the right direction with our run today. It’s not a perfect run by any means, be we’re going in the right direction.” Tony Stewart, finished ninth

“I thought we were going to be pretty good here. I just felt like I don’t think we adjust to the race track enough. It seemed like every other run we were good. We’d get it close and then I’d say we didn’t need that big of a change and we did. I feel like we probably could’ve had a top-five finish. We had a fender knocked in on pit road — that didn’t help — and they had to pull it back out and went back to 17th. We had to fight back for a 10th-place finish, but we’ll take it after the last couple of weeks.” Joey Logano, finished tenth

“We would take off there and struggle on new tires. Then it would come in really good and we’d think okay here we go, we’re going to go to the front; we’d catch somebody and just stop. It seemed like it was really hard to pass today. You’ve got to be careful what you wish for. We’ve been trying to talk Goodyear into laying rubber on the track and it laid so much rubber down that it actually made for new challenges where it was kind of a single groove race track. So, it was challenging and tough for everybody, but we’re glad to stay on the lead lap and at least come out of here with a decent finish.” Jeff Gordon, finished 11th

“We took a bad day and turned it into a decent day. We’re a battling team with great will and have a strong desire for success. It’s the same will and pride that our Soldiers have. Wearing the Army uniform inspires every one of us on this No. 39 Stewart-Haas team.” Ryan Newman, finished 13th

“I guess I got busted in the segment just leaving, or after our pit box, the very next one. So what I can take from this is that I got a much better launch out of my pit box than I did on other pit stops and then was speeding in that given area. At the end, I wasn’t busted. I knew Kyle had me beat when I saw the jack drop for him and he was easing away from me. And I kind of gave up at that point on racing him off of pit road because I knew we needed to be single file on the apron. So, I just had too much forward bite leaving the pit box and got going too fast and got busted.” Jimmie Johnson, finished 16th

“Four-hundred miles here is a lot of work. It was fun. I wish that we could have run up front more. Track position was so important today. I learned a lot driving against these guys today. I just want to be a little bit faster.” Brad Keselowski, finished 18th_

“I always think there’s pressure on me. No matter if you’re Jimmie (Johnson) winning championships or a guy in my position — there’s always pressure to do well. If he’s running second — he’s running badly. We got different goals of our own. You just got to do the best job you can week in and week out. This is a very unique scenario, obviously. Hope Brian (Vickers) gets better soon. In the meantime, we’re working real hard to try to maintain the best we can so when he comes he’ll have something good to get into.” Casey Mears, filling in for Brian Vickers, finished 22nd_

“I don’t if we changed a part of the car but within three laps, both cars (No. 1 Jamie McMurray) broke down and it really sucks.” Juan Pablo Montoya, finished 35th

Contact Summer Dreyer

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