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 Price Chopper 400 at Kansas Speedway:
“The last time Greg won I was in a hospital due to my little problem at Osh Kosh.” Jack Roush, winning car owner
“Little problem?” I’d hate to see what a big problem is to Jack Roush if a plane crash is a little one.
“Track position is important and the further back you got today, the worse your car handled. Clean air was very important. We got out front and were able to set sail. After a little bit, four tires showed up and the 16 passed us. I am kind of disappointed with fourth because we had a little bit of a slow pit stop the last pit stop. I am proud of the guys, though, because this was a fast car all weekend.” Paul Menard, finished 8th
I admire Menard’s desire to do better, but his performance in Sunday’s race had many race fans raising their eyebrows. Menard took the lead from Jamie McMurray on a restart and actually held it for several laps before Greg Biffle made what was eventually the race-winning pass. Menard is a running joke in the NASCAR community, taking a lot of flack because of his father’s business giving him the funding he needs to race. Most of the time, it’s well-deserved, but Sunday he actually proved there’s talent behind his treasure chest of funding. Menard isn’t known for finishing in the top 10, so you would think an eighth-place result would be considered a success. Kudos to him, though, for not being satisfied with a finish he felt was less than what they had.
Controversy of the Week:
“It’s just really unfortunate, you know. These guys work their butts off and to put ourselves in the Chase and to have the opportunity to try to go after a championship and to have it end up something like that today… the guy (David Reutimann) was loose — said it on the radio. He slid up off the bottom, and I got into him unintentionally and just spun him out. My fault 100 percent, but then the retaliation to a guy that’s in the Chase that’s racing for something… he’ll be here next year. He could’ve wrecked me in any of the first 26 races next year. That would’ve been fine. It’s just hard to swallow something like a day like today where we had a solid top-5 car going. Dave (Rogers, crew chief) did a phenomenal job getting this M&M’s Camry to where we could run up front, run those guys down and chase them down. And, we had a really good car going and just when we got hit there, it just bent everything under the rear end. We salvaged the best we could, but still far off of where we could’ve been.” Kyle Busch, finished 21st
“He (Kyle Busch) just rolled over me. I’m on the bottom of the race track and he had the whole top of the race track to go to, and he ran over me. I got wrecked. You guys can sugarcoat it all the time, but he wrecked me. You can tell me how bad he wants it, how hard he drives, how much he wants it above everybody else. That’s all fine. You guys can say all that, but he just wrecked me.” David Reutimann, finished 35th
I’ve never seen Reutimann that angry and I’ve never seen Busch so calm after an incident like that. I’m not huge on drivers using their racecars as a weapon, but that’s a part of racing and emotions run hot under those helmets. However, I do feel Reutimann might need to do a better job at retaliating if that’s going to be the route he takes from now on. Oh, sure, he messed up Busch’s day, but part of retaliating is making sure you don’t wreck yourself in the process.
“Thank goodness this one isn’t a controversial win. Last time, people were skeptical if I kept my speed up. I think I kept up plenty of speed this time.” Greg Biffle, race winner
A margin of victory just under eight seconds? Yes, I think you had plenty of speed, Mr. Biffle. Unlike that one time when you rolled across the line slower than my Grandma.
Crew Chief Quote of the Week:
“This guy is pretty incredible here. Look at his track record. Heck, I’ve only been with him three years now and we’re in Victory Lane twice. That ought to say something. He does a great job here.” Greg Erwin, winning crew chief
I’m beginning to wonder if it was Erwin and Biffle that pitched the idea to NASCAR for Kansas Speedway to have a second date.
Best of the Rest:
“We feel good about where we’re at. That’s what got us here was these solid top-5 finishes and the things that we did during the year. So we’ve just got to keep doing those things and keep our cars in contention to run up front, lead some laps, get those points, and we’ll see where we’re at when we get to Homestead.” Kevin Harvick, finished 3rd
“Yeah, we’re not out until you guys say we’re mathematically out. Who would have dreamed we would have two weeks in a row like we had the first two weeks? So it’s proof it can happen. Talladega is still on the schedule (laughs) so that can jumble everything up, too. So, we’ve just got to go out and do what we did today, and that’s just go out and try to win the race and take what it gives us.” Tony Stewart, finished 4th
“Well, I’m happy we gained. We gained points overall and points positions. That’s good. I felt like we kind of missed an opportunity here this weekend. I felt like we were one of the best cars and felt like we should have led more laps and had a battle for the win. We still have some work to do, and we’re going to try to make that happen with the tracks coming up. They are good tracks for us. But they’re good tracks for our competitors, too. It was a good day today. I just felt like we could have been better, and we’re going to have to do that in the races coming up.” Jeff Gordon, finished 5th
“We are so far behind that I haven’t even thought of (the Chase), to be honest with you. I am just happy that we are more competitive. We have to finish them off. I am happy we are more competitive, though.” Matt Kenseth, finished 7th
“It’s tough. You’re going to have to run well all ten of these races. The good part is we didn’t panic and get ourselves into a wreck or something like that. That’s the thing. It’s just you’ve got to make the most of your bad days and if this is a bad day for us, then we’re going to rebound next weekend. We’re going to just keep fighting. That’s all we can do.” Denny Hamlin, finished 12th
“Something is not right in the 77 world of cars. We’re getting the fluke things that never seem to happen to anybody else. Hopefully, we’re getting them all out of the way where there’s nothing left that can happen to us anymore the rest of the season.” Sam Hornish, Jr., finished 36th
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