Toyota Talladega Notes and Quotes, 10.15.20147
DENNY HAMLIN, No. 11 FedEx Ground Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing
Finishing Position: 6th
Are you kicking yourself a little bit here at the end?
“I maybe should’ve pushed the 31 (Ryan Newman) a little bit longer. I tried to pass him in a different spot, yeah just a flick shy of clearing him there and I knew if I could clear him then the runs were going to be very small because there were very few cars out there. I did what I wanted to do. I pushed him out there to the lead, stay attached and then make a move, but I just didn’t do a very good job there those last two laps.”
Are you happy you had a good points day after so many cars were involved in accidents today?
“You always want to win, I don’t care about the points. Our FedEx Toyota team really did a good job all weekend. The three big wrecks that happened, they all started in front of us and somehow we got through every time so it was quite amazing. Still a good day overall, but wish we had a little more.”
Do you have any regrets on those last few laps?
“I wish I would’ve pushed him a little bit further because I was attached to him pretty good and we got a big lead. Maybe just continue pushing, I don’t know. I don’t know what the right thing to do is. I mean, I almost cleared him there in the tri-oval, almost cleared him and that was the race for us.”
Are you disappointed you didn’t get the win today?
“There’s so few race cars out there, my chances were pretty good to win this thing especially given the circumstances we were the only ones with no damage. Just did everything I wanted to do for one lap, it’s just the last two I didn’t. It certainly could’ve been worse. There were guys around us that got caught up in wrecks and so that part of it was good for us, but you just want to have a shot to win and we had a shot to win and just didn’t quite have all everything just right. It was just there was so much battling going on with just a few cars. If you lost a run it would just take forever to try and get it back so we finished kind of back of the pack there.”
MARTIN TRUEX JR., No. 78 Bass Pro Shops/Tracker Boats Toyota Camry, Furniture Row Racing
Finishing Position: 23rd
What happened to take you out of the race?
“I’m not real sure, I got into the right-rear of the 38 (David Ragan) car a little bit and he got squirrely and then they started wrecking in front of us so I don’t know if I turned him sideways and he hit somebody on the inside and then hit somebody on the outside in front of me. I’m not sure if that was the cause of the accident or it was just a secondary thing. I hadn’t seen anything up ahead of us. If it was my fault I hate it for everybody involved. Just Talladega. Just everybody running hard with 18 to go and trying to get in a hole that really wasn’t there yet.”
Is it a relief to know that this incident doesn’t ruin your Playoff chances?
“I mean we came here knowing that we were in good shape and we were just going to race hard, try to put ourselves in position to hopefully get another win and unfortunately we couldn’t. We could never even get to the lead all day. We tried hard and got close a bunch of times and had a lot of fun out there, just there were some really strong cars and we weren’t one of them.”
What happened in that incident?
“Well I tried to get into a hole that was closing up at the wrong time and by the time that I got in the brakes trying to get out of there I got in the 38 (David Ragan) a little bit on the right rear and he got squirrely out there and all hell broke loose. Just was trying to get to the end and get some track position and try to get towards the front and have a good day and ended up causing a wreck, so I hate it for everybody. We definitively had nothing to lose today, but at the same time you don’t want to be the person that causes others problems. Even though I feel like I’ve never been that guy here before it looks like today I was, so I hate it for all of those guys and all of their teams. I wish I didn’t make that mistake. Just 18 to go at Talladega, trying to get going and trying to fill a hole. Bad judgement and should have been more patient.”
KYLE BUSCH, No. 18 M&M’s Caramel Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing
Finishing Position: 27th
Are you okay after the accident?
“I’m fine. I just didn’t know where the heck the 48 (Jimmie Johnson) came from with all of the headrests and all of that stuff I never saw him coming. I wish I would’ve obviously, I would’ve tried to dodge left and go to the apron and shoot down there. Looking at it, it looks like I could’ve missed it. Just never seen him coming, so unfortunately we got caught up in that mess. None of our own wrong doing. I thought when I cleared the 38 (David Ragan) I was home free of it and then had another one come up from the left side. Just hate it for my guys and everything going on with what our situation was today. We’ll just have to go on and go to Kansas now.”
How does this set you up for Kansas?
“I have no clue. I don’t know what’s going on around us. I don’t know who all was in it with us. Obviously the 48 (Jimmie Johnson), the 78 (Martin Truex Jr.), the 17 (Ricky Stenhouse Jr.), the 1 (Jamie McMurray) has been out for a while, so we should probably be the last guy through.”
What happened from your perspective?
“I had no clue what happened. I just saw the 38 (David Ragan) get sideways above me and then he came across my back and I missed him and he must have got the 48 (Jimmie Johnson) and the 48 shot up right across in front of us. I never seen him. I wish I would’ve saw him a little bit down there. I could’ve shot to the apron and tried to miss him, but unfortunately we just got messed up in that deal. I hate it for our situation and what we’ve got going on, that’s not what we needed today, but that’s what we got so we’ll just move on to next week.”
ERIK JONES, No. 77 5-hour ENERGY Extra Strength Toyota Camry, Furniture Row Racing
Finishing Position: 36th
What happened on the race track to cause the incident?
“It was kind of hard to see from my view. I was behind the 18 (Kyle Busch) and he started checking up, he swerved off to the left and the 1 (Jamie McMurray) was sitting there really slow on the race track so I didn’t really have any choice. Unfortunately ran him over and kind of caused a chain reaction from there. It’s a bummer. We didn’t get to race today and I was hoping we’d just get a chance to go up and see what we had. It’s unfortunate, but those kind of things are going to happen here.”
RIS NASCAR Editor. Has been with RIS since the middle 90's. Writes on each of the three main series of NASCAR.