NASCAR Sprint Cup Series: Federated Auto Parts 400
Topics: Federated Auto Parts 400
September 7, 2013
KERRY THARP: We have our top seed in the 2013 Chase, and that is Matt Kenseth. We have Joey Logano who came in before the seeds as the 10th place driver. With the seed he is in sixth position now. Clint Bowyer comes in. Before the seeds he was third, and after, he is the eighth‑seeded driver going into the Chase.
Let's hear first from Matt Kenseth. Top seed. What does that mean?
MATT KENSETH: Yeah, proud of my team obviously for putting us here. We've had really a terrific 26 weeks, led some laps, fortunate enough to win some races. Excited to be up on top. Looking forward to Chicago and kicking off.
It feels like it's been a really long first two‑thirds of the season. I'm ready for the Chase to start, excited about the stuff we got going for Chicago.
KERRY THARP: Joey Logano, certainly getting into this Chase, your first Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, first year over at Penske Racing. Congratulations. What does it feel like for you?
JOEY LOGANO: It feels great. I mean, obviously tonight wasn't the night we were looking for as far as where we ran on the racetrack. We struggled pretty hard tonight with our Shell‑Pennzoil Ford. To get into the top 10 and get our three bonus points there, it was huge. These last three, four weeks have been very stressful. Feels like a big weight has been lifted off your shoulders to get in this thing.
Now we can reset our goals towards the championship. Got a good shot at it. Ready to have some fun now.
KERRY THARP: Clint Bowyer, last year's runner‑up. Clint, you come back, you'll be seeded I believe eighth. Talk about your attempt to go after a championship.
CLINT BOWYER: Time to start over, unfortunately. Matt is the new points leader. Fortunately for him he is the points leader. Just a crummy night. Three weeks in a row we've been leading and just had bad things happen.
I felt like we truly had a shot at winning the last three weeks and had no luck.
You know, wild night. It is what it is. The Chase has started. I'm proud to be in it. Proud of my team. Proud of Brian Pattie. Everyone does such a great job of bringing good equipment to the racetrack capable for me to get the job done each and every week.
You know, let the fun begin.
KERRY THARP: We'll take questions for Matt, Joey or Clint.
Q. Clint, can you explain what happened when you spun late in the race to bring out the last caution?
CLINT BOWYER: Yeah, I think we had something going wrong. We went from a car capable of winning the race, leading, to I think we started 12th or 13th, just went straight backwards. Extremely tighter, tighter, tighter, tighter.
The 88 got up underneath of me. I had so much wheel, by the time I got to the gas, he was underneath me, I spun out.
It's unfortunate. Trust me, I would have much rather been winning the race and been over in Victory Lane than in here bummed out. Extremely bummed, you know, the outcome of the race. Extremely even more bummed, once you get out you realize there were implications.
There's bound to be. Doesn't matter whether it was me or anybody else. When it comes down to crunch time, the last race, it's wild to think after all the racing that's happened, Talladega, Daytona, wild cards, road courses, you can come here and there be six, seven, eight cars running for those one or two spots.
So, you know, it is what it is. But we've had a solid year and we've been consistent. Proud to be in it.
Q. (No microphone.)
CLINT BOWYER: I mean, I don't look at that. He's in, and the other two are out. You know what I mean? I guess I've got one friend and two that hate me (laughter).
JOEY LOGANO: I love you, Clint. Thank you.
CLINT BOWYER: If it wasn't me, could have been a debris caution. Who knows, whatever.
Q. Clint, ESPN replayed some audio in which you were told the 39 was going to win right before your spin. They might have said something like, Is your arm tired?
CLINT BOWYER: My car was tight as hell. 48 blew a tire and hit the wall. I'm telling you, I was the next one. That thing slid, what, maybe less than 10 feet and blew out. You know what I mean? Something was going on there. I've been doing this a long time. It is what it is.
It's unfortunate. I know it's a lot of fun for you guys to write a lot of whacky things. Go ahead if you want to, get creative. But don't look too much into it.
It's unfortunate. I feel bad for the two guys. I'm happy for Martin. We're out there racing as hard as we can. I went from a car that was looking like I could have won to no man's land. I was extremely bummed out and pissed off.
I mean, we don't have computers onboard that tells us everything that happens and goes on within those cars. I mean, he is smart enough to understand all this, but he's been doing it for 58 years. I've only been at it a few.
Q. Joey, you're the one driver not going in with a teammate. I can't believe that Keselowski won't be a tremendous assistance to you. Talk about how important he's going to be.
JOEY LOGANO: I think he'll be very important. It's unfortunate that Brad missed the Chase. Obviously, our goal tonight was to get both Penske cars in the Chase. We got one in.
Brad is a champion no matter what you say. He won the championship last year. He still will be out there in contention to win races. I'm sure he'll win some races before the year is out.
At the same time we can use him as a teammate right now to try some things, try to improve what we got. That's what we do now. Nothing is going to change because of this. I know Brad is really strong. I'm sure it's tough on him right now, but he's going to be okay.
Yeah, I mean, like I said, it's tough. But nothing is really going to change within our organization. I feel like we work as a team very well, Penske Racing does, with two teams. You have to share your notes, the crew chiefs and drivers need to be even tighter. I don't see us changing that at all.
Q. (No microphone.)
CLINT BOWYER: I'm going to, yes. We're taking him snipe hunting tonight (laughter).
KERRY THARP: Congratulations.
|Connect with The Crittenden Automotive Library|