NASCAR Nationwide Series: Ford EcoBoost 300
Topics: Ford EcoBoost 300
November 16, 2013
KERRY THARP: Let's roll into our post race press conference. Our second- and third‑place finishers of tonight's race have joined us. Our third‑place finisher is Kyle Busch, and our second‑place finisher, also the 2013 Sunoco Rookie of the Year is Kyle Larson.
Kyle Busch, talk about your race out there tonight and what you saw out of your racecar in this season finale.
KYLE BUSCH: Our car was just all right. We had certainly had better cars in previous races this year. It was just in another car we probably could have won the race, but it certainly wasn't the best car out here tonight.
The Penske cars were really good. Kyle Larson was really good as well. It was a lot tougher for us than what we hoped it to be, but we come home with a solid third, but today that wasn't good enough.
Unfortunately a lot of mistakes were made this year. A lot of my mistakes were made this year, you know, made us lose points throughout the season. Ultimately we missed by two. It's frustrating. I hate it for everyone at Joe Gibbs Racing, for Monster Energy. They deserved a championship this year.
You win 12 races a year, you go out there and capitalize with lesser talented driver, like Drew Herring or Owen Kelly, they're trying to run for solid finishes, get themselves experience. You're racing against Cup guys in another Nationwide car with a Cup team.
It was a little bit more difficult than it should have been, but those were the hands we were dealt. All in all, just proud of the team and everyone, the way they worked this year.
KERRY THARP: Kyle Larson becomes the first Drive for Diversity driver to win this award and first Asian‑American driver to win that.
Great honor for you in your first season in the NASCAR Nationwide Series. Talk about what that accomplishment means to you.
KYLE LARSON: It means a lot to me to win the Rookie of the Year in the Nationwide Series. A lot of the veterans in the past and in the current Cup Series have won the Rookie of the Year. To add my name to that list hopefully means I'm doing something good.
As far as tonight went, I think we definitely had the best car on the long run. Short runs, we were maybe fourth or fifth best. After seven or eight laps, we were really, really good.
I got on the wall three or four times. Seemed like every time I did, it made my car better.
Kyle Busch drove by me earlier and asked me if I learned anything from him in Cup practice. I definitely did. I learned the higher you get, the faster you go. It's a fine line up there.
Had a lot of fun. Got beat on tires there at the end. I knew Brad was coming. Had that long yellow flag. I thought that was going to help us and maybe keep us out front long enough to win. Just came up a couple laps short.
To get four second‑place finishes my rookie season isn't any reason to hang my head, proud of how my Turner Sport guys have worked.
KERRY THARP: We'll open it up to questions.
Q. Were you surprised that the race wasn't red flagged?
KYLE LARSON: I was surprised, but I was glad it wasn't just 'cause it helped us a little bit, I think. They kept wanting to go, but they realized it was pretty wet up top on the straightaway. I was nervous to choose the top on that restart because I didn't know how dirty it was going to be.
I think it worked out in our hands a little bit better that they didn't red flag it.
KYLE BUSCH: Same.
Q. Something was said on the radio today about suspending your Nationwide operation for now. Is that the game plan for 2014?
KYLE BUSCH: There's absolutely no funding in this world. It really, really sucks. That's why we're open and in business. But when the economy turns, Joe Gibbs Racing shut my team down this off‑season, Turner Scott Motorsports is shutting down Nationwide teams this year. It's not due to lack of hard work, that's for sure.
KERRY THARP: Thank you both.
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