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NASCAR Race Weekend Central

Running Their Mouth: 2010 Auto Club 500 at Fontana

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 Auto Club 500:

“I won my first race here, and to come back and win my 48th… I can’t thank the fans enough for supporting our great sport and being behind us. It has just been a great nine years, and I look forward to seeing what the future brings.” – Jimmie Johnson, Auto Club 500 winner

“Jimmie is a good friend of mine, but there’s no way of getting around how lucky they are. You don’t win four championships and do all the things they’ve done. They did a good job today in winning the race, but they have a golden horseshoe stuck up their ass. I mean, there’s no way to get around that.” – Kevin Harvick, finished second, on Jimmie Johnson’s luck

“We felt good about what happened in the fall, over the winter. Until you start racing, you don’t know where you are honestly. You feel good about it. I had quite a bit of confidence coming in. But until everybody gets out here and they’re going to give somebody a trophy, you don’t really know where you stand.” – Jeff Burton, finished third, on the rebuilding effort with Richard Childress

“It was a great run. Alan [Gustafson] and everybody on the GoDaddy.com Chevy did awesome. They gave me a great racecar. It was fun, man. What a great track to race on. There was a lot of racing going on out there, and a lot of passing, side-by-side, and fighting. I had a blast today.” – Mark Martin, finished fourth

“The first time I came here was last year and we sucked. We ran 35th to 40th the whole time. Last time we came here, we ran probably 20th to 25th, and this time around we were within the top 10 and sneaked out a top five there at the end. You got to be pleased with that. That was really cool.” – Joey Logano, finished fifth

“I’m feeling great as far as the two finishes that we’ve had. It sounds dumb, me saying that since we won the first two last year, but to get out of Daytona with all the troubles we had and finish eighth, and then to come here in Todd [Parrott]’s first weekend and finish seventh is pretty good.” – Matt Kenseth, finished seventh

“That’s some crummy luck there. But it just wasn’t our day, you know? We got up there, and there was just so much trash blowing around unfortunately. This wind was blowing it right into that front straightaway wall and the catchfence, and it just kind of spins and twirls right there. It’s just a frustrating day.” – Clint Bowyer, finished eighth after a long pit stop to clean off his grill for overheating

“I swear – we almost pulled a Joey Logano there, as well. I would have laughed my ass off if we would have won that race under rain like he did.” – Scott Speed, finished 11th

“The one time we stayed out because it was raining, we kept running and everybody short-pitted. They should have thrown the caution because it was raining pretty hard, and they didn’t. And we lost a lot of ground with everybody short-pitting.” – Brian Vickers, finished 12th

“We were running legitimately in the top 10 until I messed up on pit road on the last stop (overshot the pit box). That really hurt us – it’s on me. Once you lose track position in dirty air, it’s tough to make up ground. It was a huge confidence builder when you see the [No.] 48 car and run with him (Jimmie Johnson). It makes you feel you belong there, and the team believes what they’re doing is right. I am really proud of this team.” – Regan Smith, finished 19th

“I tell you we had no luck today. We battled the weather and the other competitors, and most of them beat us today.” – Denny Hamlin, finished 29th

“We tore up an axle or a drive plate, one of the two. Down in the center of [turns] 1 and 2, I just got back to the gas and the car felt like it had a flat tire. I don’t know. Something’s going on there where we’re chewing that stuff up and tearing it up. We’ve got to figure out why that’s happening; they think it’s a material issue, so we’ll just have to see.” – Dale Earnhardt Jr., finished 32nd

“I can’t build the cars. What do you want me to do? I just drive them.” – Earnhardt Jr. on why his performance was so far below that of his Hendrick teammates Sunday

“It was fun running against the wall. I don’t do that a whole lot here. I thought the racing was pretty good. We were mixing it up, and that is the most competitive I have been here in a long time. We’ll just keep on going.” – Ryan Newman, finished 36th

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