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 a select few were thinking following the Subway Fresh Fit 500 at Phoenix International Raceway:
“He [Rick Hendrick] makes dreams come true. I watched Tim Richmond win after he was sick, [and] this is as big a deal to me. Arlene [Martin’s wife], thank you for letting me do it. I knew Tony Stewart was good for a while… I knew I had the opportunity to lose it. But Tony raced me clean.” – Mark Martin, race winner
“You can’t say you’re unhappy running second, especially to Mark Martin. It’s good to see him still kicking butt. It just shows a guy like him can kick our butts like everyone else… really proud of Darian Grubb and all the guys on this team. I can taste it. I know it’s coming.” – Tony Stewart, finished second
“My crew held me in there all night long. They gave me great pit stops. I felt like a third-place effort tonight was like a win because Mark Martin was stout and Tony Stewart was strong midway through the race. Great job for the Miller Lite Dodge. Right now, we’re feeling pretty good.” – Kurt Busch, finished third in his 300th career start
“At the end of the day, it was a good day in the points. We passed a lot of cars. We had some issues with lug nuts falling off due to the glue that we used. It says a lot to have a great racecar like we did and pass that many cars. So happy for that entire No. 5 team and Mark Martin.” – Jimmie Johnson, finished fourth
“It feels great to be running up front. The No. 1 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet was a top-10 car all night. I’m really proud of [crew chief] Bono and my guys. We have a lot of work to do, but tonight was a step in the right direction.” – Martin Truex Jr., finished seventh
“It was a real good run for us. We might have been fighting for a top five if the driver had qualified a little better. I’m just real proud of these guys that work on the Mobil 1 Dodge. They really put a lot of work into it. I said if we keep narrowing it down, changing pieces of the puzzle, and trying to get all the right people in the right places, we could be competitive.” – Sam Hornish Jr., finished ninth
“It’s just really hard to pass here. We had a good car, but track position is just really important and we just never got it. It really was a good day. We had a pretty good day in the pits.” – Jamie McMurray, finished 11th
“It felt good running in the top 10 in only my second time at Phoenix in a Cup car, and we were able to pick up a couple spots in the points standings. The points are still pretty close, and we’re not far outside the top 12. That feels pretty good for us.” – Marcos Ambrose, finished 14th
“We came here with a new setup and we weren’t the best car, but made a huge improvement from last year. We didn’t want to see that caution come out at the end. The guys had a great stop [but] they said we were too fast exiting in the last pit stall and it killed our day.” – Kyle Busch, finished 17th
“I don’t know, probably should have came for tires there. We were running 18th and I don’t know what Michael [Waltrip] was doing… but he ran us over. Giving up this many points again another week in a row – it’s a devastation. Our speedway cars are not that fast, so I’m really concerned about that. Looking forward to having a new driver in the [No.] 55 next year.” – Robby Gordon
About the author
Content Director Beth heads up management of our 30-person staff, acting as Tom’s main assistant with technology and personnel while working as Frontstretch’s Truck Series expert. The author of Truckin’ Thursdays and the coordinator of the site’s pre and post-race coverage, she also runs a periodic charity column that spotlights when NASCAR gives back. A childhood transplant to Texas, Beth is a 15-year writing veteran who has contributed content to BRANDT and Athlon Sports, among other outlets.
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