NASCAR Sprint Cup Series: LifeLock.com 400
Topics: LifeLock.com 400
July 11, 2009
KERRY THARP: We'll go ahead and get started, roll into our post race press conference at Chicagoland Speedway. We're pleased to be joined by our third-place finisher in tonight's race. He jumps up to eighth now in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series points standings. A great evening tonight for Kasey Kahne, driver of the No. 9 Budweiser Dodge. You had to feel good about tonight's performance, as the races in the Race to the Chase start to dwindle down.
KASEY KAHNE: We've been working really well together, our whole Budweiser team. Races like this, nights like this you can gain those points. Try to stay in that top 12. That's what it's all about, making the Chase. The guys had great pit stops tonight. They've been on a roll with that. The car was good from the drop of the green. We made some adjustments, kept trying to make it better. Those restarts at the end were tough. It was a battle. There were a lot of good cars battling. I think we got as far back as sixth on the restarts and worked back to second, then back to third with Jeff.
Fought hard against Jeff there at the end. I wanted to hold him off. I felt like we were better than him all night. He had some tires there and was better than us, ended up beating us. We battled hard. It was a good night.
KERRY THARP: Questions for Kasey Kahne.
Q. How much does the engine help? It seems if you're on the good side of the restarts, you love the restarts, and if you get shuffled, they suck. Where is your opinion on 'em?
KASEY KAHNE: Well, the engine, I mean, we got to compare it to the best tonight. We raced with Hendricks and the Gibbs, the 11, throughout the race. Every restart, every pass for position was against one of those guys. We still have some work to do. I think it was decent and we still have some work to do with those guys. My car handled great, you know, so I was happy about that.
The restarts, I like it. I still think it's a great change that NASCAR did. I lost some, I made some again. Same as every week. I lose three of the restarts and win three of the restarts. I don't know, 50% is not too bad.
Q. It seemed like for most of the night most of the guys were on cruise control. After that last restart, everybody went a little bit nuts. I know people were trying to win. What was the difference there?
KASEY KAHNE: Well, I think late in the race one guy makes one guy mad and it causes a reaction from that guy, then they get into another car, then another guy is smoking another guy sideways. Next thing you know, you have 10 guys that are fuming. You never know what's gonna happen. Some guys had tires, other guys didn't, so the speed was way different. I think it just created a lot of kind of chaos back on those restarts. That's excitement for the fans and kind of craziness for the drivers.
Q. How much of it was you maybe being more comfortable with this track, a lot of talk about it weathering in, people being able to race more. Was it an element of the track?
KASEY KAHNE: To me it was similar to what it was last year, last few years here. It's been wide. The pavement has been pretty white, pretty gray like it was. Gets rubbered up quick. You can race kind of all over the racetrack. To me it was similar.
We had our best car. I think I did the best job that I've done at Chicagoland Speedway. I've never raced that well here. It was a good night for us.
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