NASCAR Sprint Cup Series: Pure Michigan 400
Topics: Pure Michigan 400
August 18, 2013
THE MODERATOR: Joining us now is Kurt Busch, who finished third today. Kurt sits ninth in points following today's race.
Kurt, talk about the race and your thoughts on the Chase.
KURT BUSCH: It was a good day for us. We battled hard, persevered. Came through some of the sequences where we were putting on four tires, some of the other guys were putting on two. Even saw some fuel‑only out there today.
We stuck with our game plan. At one point we were buried deep, 14th on one of the restarts. I was a little frustrated at that point, knowing we had a much better car. But our weaknesses were restarts today, trying to maneuver in traffic.
But lo and behold, got fired up, sometimes I get lucky, and opening opened up on the outside. I think I came on that restart from 14th to sixth. It was a game‑changer. That one moment was our race.
But to be in position and run well, to post a top‑three finish, just got to thank the guys. Furniture Row team is acting like a big‑time player right now. We have a little bit of weaknesses here and there, but overall we keep posting good results, and it's very satisfying.
THE MODERATOR: Questions for Kurt.
Q. You almost seem like you don't want to get excited. You're ninth in the points now. The Chase is close. You have three races to go. You almost seem like you don't want to get too excited about it right now. Are those next three races that critical in your mind?
KURT BUSCH: Well, it's being focused. I'm excited that we're running well. We're able to seal the deal, when that had been some of our struggles through the midpoint of the season.
Now I'm just in that Chase mode where we have to get in. You can't celebrate with a third‑place finish. You just have to feel confident and to know that you can go back next week and do it again.
The biggest thing is just staying out of trouble. Bristol, trouble can happen at any corner. There's going to be 500 laps that we have to perform there next week where we have to protect our car and still finish well.
A day like today, we were running 14th with 60 to go or something like that, I'm looking at Biffle ahead of us, Truex, Kahne, Keselowski. We wouldn't have gained any points today.
So it's great. I'm happy. I'm very satisfied with the effort today. There's still just three weeks to go where we could get in a little fender‑bender, some itty‑bitty thing happen the next three weeks and that will put us on the outside.
Excuse me if my blinders are on.
Q. How exciting is it to be in a position like this, especially after last year, to get in the Chase with three to go?
KURT BUSCH: This is tremendous. Jumping in with the Furniture Row guys last year, running six races together, got a lot of the bugs worked out. It allowed us to discover things about ourselves, some weaknesses on the team.
Each section through this season, like every six races, we can lump them together and say that we've improved every time we've gone through a chunk of six races at a time.
Now here we are. We're 23 races in, got three to go to get in the Chase. It's an amazing feeling to be in position right now, have a group of guys from Denver, Colorado, in the Chase right now. That's what we have to do, make sure when the door closes, the music stops, that we got a place.
THE MODERATOR: Kurt, congratulations on your run today. Good luck next weekend.
KURT BUSCH: Thank you.
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