Friday, March 15, 2013

Chevy qualifying at Bristol


NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES
FOOD CITY 500
BRISTOL MOTOR SPEEDWAY
TEAM CHEVY DRIVER QUALIFYING NOTES & QUOTES
MARCH 15, 2013

 KASEY KAHNE WILL START SECOND AT BRISTOL
Ffour Chevys to start in the top-10 in Sunday’s Food City 500

BRISTOL, Tenn. (MARCH 15, 2013) ~ Kasey Kahne, No. 5 Great Clips Chevrolet SS, put down the second-fastest lap of the day and will start Sunday’s Food City 500 at Bristol Motor Speedway on the outside of the front row.   His lap time of 14.875 seconds and 128.995 mph was also above the previous track qualifying record set by Ryan Newman in 2003.   This is Kasey’s fourth top-10 start of 2013 and his 10th in 19 races at Bristol.

Richard Childress Racing driver Paul Menard, No. 27 Menards/Sylvania Chevrolet SS, qualified fifth for his best start of 2013.   Menard is followed by Jaime McMurray, No. 1 Cessna Chevrolet SS, who reeled off the sixth-fastest lap of the day.   Tony Stewart, driver of the No. 14 Bass Pro Shops/MOBIL 1 Chevrolet SS, posted the eighth-fastest lap rounded out the Chevrolet drivers in the top-10.   Stewart won the fall race at Bristol in 2001 for his only NASCAR Sprint Cup series win at the “World’s Fastest Half Mile”. 

Other Chevrolet drivers qualifying just outside the top-10 included:  Jeff Gordon, No. 24 Drive to End Hunger Chevrolet SS (11th); Jimmie Johnson, No. 48 Lowe’s/Kobalt Tools Chevrolet SS (13th); Jeff Burton, No. 31 Cheerios Chevrolet SS was 16th; Juan Pablo Montoya, No. 42 Target Chevrolet SS was 17th; Kevin Harvick, No. 29 Budweiser Chevrolet SS was 18th and Kurt Busch, No. 78 Furniture Row/Beautyrest Chevrolet SS was 19th.

Kyle Busch (Toyota) was the pole winner, Denny Hamlin (Toyota) was third, and Brian Vickers was fourth to round out the top-10.  

Sunday’s Food City 500 from Bristol Motor Speedway will air live on FOX at 1:00 pm ET and can be heard on PRN radio and Sirius/XM satellite radio channel 90.

KASEY KAHNE, NO. 5 GREAT CLIPS CHEVROLET SS – QUALIFIED 2ND:
POST QUALIFYING PRESS CONFERENCE TRANSCRIPT:

THAT WAS QUITE A LAP YOU PUT DOWN THERE TODAY
“Yeah, the car felt really good. I knew Kyle (Busch, pole-winner) had put down a great lap and a track record. So I knew I had to go pretty hard. I just felt like I may have given up a little bit in (Turns) 1 and 2, which would have made it really close for the pole. But, we it was still really good between (Turns) 3 and 4. The car was balanced really nice. We had to work on it a lot in practice getting it where it needed to be and it should be a good race on Sunday. I’m looking forward to it. I really like how the car has driven so far today.”

WHAT ARE THE LIMITS ON SPEED HERE? IS IT JUST A MATTER OF WHAT THE TIRES ARE LIKE AND CAN YOU EVENTUALLY GET DOWN TO THE LOW  ‘14’s? I think those speeds today were pretty good, especially what Kyle (Busch) did. That’s fast. You put softer tires on it and you might be able to go faster; I don’t know. But they have to last for a full race run. I felt like the tire felt pretty good today, so I was really happy with the way the car drive in race trim and in qualifying trim. You’re going into the corner has hard as we ever have and the cars are loading and traveling as much as they have with this combination. So, I think eventually we’ll probably go faster than that. But for today, I thought that was a good lap.”

GOING BACK TO LAST YEAR AND THE FIRST RACE WITH THE HIGH GROOVE, DID YOU LIKE THAT BETTER? AND IS THAT AN EXAMPLE OF A TRACK THAT MADE SOME CHANGES THAT MAYBE DIDN’T MAKE THE DRIVERS SO HAPPY BUT BENEFITED THE FANS
“I feel like that’s the most grip the bottom of the race track has had in a long time. You can get your car good there, and then move around to the top. The top is a little bit smoother at times. Or, there are spots up there that might be a little smoother so you can get good runs and momentum down the back-stretch and front stretch. But I think it’s going to turn into a good race. You’re going to be able to pass on the bottom, hopefully, as long as the grip stays there where as before, it was so hard to clear a car. You could get just about by him in the center of the corner, but by the exit they were back to your right so I’s hard to clear them. Sunday you’ll be able to get your car good enough to clear them on the bottom.”

KASEY KAHNE, NO. 5 GREAT CLIPS CHEVROLET SS – QUALIFIED 2ND:
WERE YOU ON THE EDGE OUT THERE?
“A little bit.  I was trying to get all I could because I knew that Kyle put down a crazy-fast lap.  So I didn’t get through one and two as well as I wanted and really pushed in three and four and got some of it back and it was really close.  Our Great Clips Chevy SS was pretty awesome and the car felt really good and its fun to go that fast at this track.  You can press pretty hard here so that was excited and was a good time.  I wish we could have beat Kyle but he put down a great lap.”

TONY STEWART, NO. 14 BASS PRO SHOPS/MOBIL 1 CHEVROLET SS - QUALIFIED 8th 
ANYTHING LESS THAN 15 SECONDS AROUND THIS PLACE IS HAULING THE MAIL. HOW DID YOU FEEL ABOUT YOUR QUALIFYING LAP?
"You've never watched winged sprint cars run around Eldora have you? I can promise you the track record at Eldora is a 12.7 for the World of Outlaws.  Under 15 flat is not a big deal here.  It just shows how good these cars are.  To come out with a new car and have them drive this nice off the bat is a pretty nice deal." 

JIMMIE JOHNSON, NO. 48 LOWE'S/KOBLAT TOOLS CHEVROLET SS - QUALIFIED 13th
WHEN YOU QUALIFY HERE MENTALLY DO YOU TRY TO REMIND YOURSELF OF A HABIT THAT MIGHT NOT BE GOOD OR DO YOU JUST THROW CAUTION TO THE WIND?
"You just go.  You've got to go hard.  With a 14 second lap time that has the pole right now there is no time to think.  It's all about reacting.  I think through a few things on pit road, but usually you go through the gear box so fast and you are in turn three and it's go time and you are coming to the green.  It's really one of those things that you just throw everything you can at it, hope it sticks and hope you bring it back in one piece." 

JAMIE MCMURRAY, NO. 1 CESSNA CHEVROLET SS - QUALIFIED 6th:
THAT WAS AN IMPRESSIVE LAP:
"Martin (Truex, Jr.) and I joked around I'm like 'I just want to run in the 14's at Bristol to say you have done that.' In practice, I mean I don't know how you go much quicker.  A really good day, we have Cessna on board, first race for them in NASCAR.  Our whole team did a really good job today.  We unloaded the car had really good speed.  You could run on the bottom.  I'm really hoping that the top groove doesn't come in because our car was good on the bottom.  All around our team did a great job.  It's just been a good day." 

RYAN NEWMAN, NO. 39 HAAS AUTOMATION CHEVROLET SS - QUALIFIED 31ST
VERY PROUD OF A LOT OF HIS ACCOMPLISHMENTS THROUGH THE YEARS HERE AT BRISTOL BUT THAT TRACK RECORD HERE IN THE 14'S HAS TO BE ONE OF THEM:
"It was in the 14.90 back in '03 I think it was.  That was two cars ago, probably about eight different tires.  A lot of things have changed the track has changed and everything else.  We didn't have the good lap that we needed today.  We made some changes before qualifying and just didn't hit on it.  Actually feel a lot better in race trim than we did in qualifying trim.  Happy we are done with qualifying trim."

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