Ford Performance Talladega 2 Quotes 10-4-2020

MATT DIBENEDETTO, No. 21 Menards/Tuscany Ford Mustang -- POST-RACE INTERVIEW BEFORE PENALTY RULING WAS ANNOUNCED. - WHAT ARE YOU THINKING?  “It’s just a crazy finish.  I haven’t been able to really process it.  I just really want to get this thing in Victory Lane.  This Tuscany Faucets team.  I feel like this is the same story a lot of times, just heartbreak.  My wife and I have had a stressful week again just with the uncertainty -- always fighting for my life -- but I’m so appreciative of this team.  The Wood Brothers, I want this 100th win for the Woods so bad.  Our alliance with Team Penske, Ford -- I appreciate them putting me in this car.  It’s so much fun to drive and have a shot to win.  Denny did a great job.  Deja vu.  Holy cow.  Denny deserves all the support in the world.  He’s an incredible racer.  He was my biggest threat.  I tried to block all I could.  My spotter, Doug, did a great job.  This is tough.”

YOU LED AT THE RESTART.  YOU SLAMMED YOUR WAY THROUGH THREE AND FOUR.  HOW MUCH MORE COULD YOU HAVE DONE?  “It was actually tough to see.  My windshield was filthy from all the speedy dry.  I was having trouble seeing to block.  I was blocking everyone’s lane.  I mean, that was pure desperation, but that’s how I drive every race.  Every time I step foot in a race car.  I’m appreciative for the challenges I’ve faced.  That’s what it teaches you when you have those shots.  I just want it so bad for my team -- Greg Erwin and all these guys.  Wild finish.  That’s Talladega.  I’m glad the fans got a great show.  I just hope to win races.  I know we can do it.”

YOUR THOUGHTS?  “I don’t know.  I’m just so close.  I’m appreciative to be driving for this team.  I want it so bad to put them in Victory Lane, Menards and Tuscany Faucets, and Motorcraft/Quick Lane, Ford, our alliance with Team Penske, Roush Yates, you name it -- all of these folks -- I just want to do it so bad.  It’s so tough to come that close, but it just shows we’re getting better and better as a team, and I just want it so bad.  It’s been a tough week, honestly, with the uncertainty and I just pray to continue driving for the Wood Brothers.  It’s a dream come true and there’s a lot of people involved that go into the decision-making and I just pray and pray I get to do it.  I’m lucky that I got to drive this year racing for wins.  Denny Hamlin a couple times now.  He did a great job.  He’s just a tremendous racer.  These are tough to swallow.  It’s deja vu.”

BRAD KESELOWSKI, No. 2 Discount Tire Ford Mustang -- “I hope Tony Stewart is watching because he would be proud.  We wrecked every car in the field and I wrecked four times in somebody else’s mess.  This rules package just has everybody so on top of each other.  Runs are just so fast and everybody wants to block and the runs are too fast to block and causes a lot of wrecks, but we made it through somewhat okay, I guess.  We finished 18th and scored a lot of stage points, got a decent points cushion going into the Roval, but that’s gonna be a madhouse because there are a lot of cars next week that are gonna need a big race.  Hopefully, we just get through there with a solid day with the Discount Tire Ford and move on.”

PLUS 41 GOING TO THE ROVAL.  HOW COMFORTING IS THAT?  “It’s good.  I don’t look at the ninth-place car, I always look at the eighth-place car in case ninth through 12th wins the race, and that way we’re only plus-20.  That’s okay, not great.  We’ll probably need to have a solid day there as well.” 

KEVIN HARVICK, No. 4 Jimmy John’s Ford Mustang -- “We tried to take care of our Jimmy John’s Ford Mustang most of the day and wound up starting fourth on one of the restarts toward the end and wound up part of the attrition for the day.  Looking up and down pit road it doesn’t look like there’s very many cars that don’t have damage.”

WHAT WILL BE THE PROCESS FOR YOU GUYS NEXT WEEK?  GO GRAB ANOTHER 5 PLAYOFF POINTS?  “We need to try and run well just to put ourselves in a good position for next year since we’re gonna come back with this same rules package.  Obviously, you want to run good and winning a race would be great as well, so that’s always the goal.”

JOEY LOGANO, No. 22 Shell Pennzoil Ford Mustang -- “We had a lot of speed in our Shell/Pennzoil Mustang car.  It was fast and it was up towards the front the whole race, leading a lot of laps.  We were right where we wanted to be at the end of the race and the 9 had a huge run.  I probably shouldn’t have tried to block it.  He was so fast and I lost a lot of momentum when I tried to block that, and that gave the 24 a big run and then I got in the middle and then I got in the soup and the next thing that happens is they all crashed, so it’s gonna be a tough week next week.”

ARIC ALMIROLA, No. 10 Smithfield Power Bites Ford Mustang -- “I’m okay.  I honestly haven’t seen the replay, so it’s hard to say, but I got hit from behind and turned in the outside fence.  It’s such a shame.  We had such a fast Smithfield Power Bites Ford Mustang.  I’m just disappointed.  We were doing everything we needed to do.  We were closing in to the end of stage one and it looked like we were gonna score a lot of points there, which is exactly what we needed to do.  It looks like he got to my outside and my car started to turn to the right, so it’s unfortunate.  I don’t know if he got in the back of me and hooked me or how that played out, but my car just made a hard right into the fence.  It’s unfortunate.  I had a lot of confidence going into today.  I thought we were gonna have a good shot to win.  Our car was so fast, but unfortunately the Good Lord had different plans for us today.  We’ll go onto the Roval and try one more time.”

CLINT BOWYER, No. 14 Rush Truck Centers Ford Mustang -- WHAT WERE YOU TRYING TO DO WITH THE 48 THERE?  “You’ve got to go.  You’ve got to push him.  The 22 and the 21 were trying and obviously they gave up on it for some reason.  As soon as I got to him I push him in the front and the whole rear of the car went down and I was like, ‘Oh my God,’ and before I know it he was tank swapping all over the place.  I don’t know if that was how they had their cars built or whatever, but as soon as you got close to him he was all over the place.  Obviously didn’t mean to wreck him, but you’re going hard and three-wide and people are behind you pushing.  I was hoping he would save it, but he didn’t and we all wrecked.”

HOW DO YOU FACE NEXT WEEK AT THE ROVAL?  “Same way you always do -- go to win.”

COLE CUSTER, No. 41 Ford Mustang -- “Our Mustang was fast and they just all started pushing real hard on the bottom or the middle and then they started spinning.  I was like, ‘Hopefully, I can make it past it,’ but we didn’t.  It sucks.  I thought we had a really fast car.  All the guys at SHR built some fast cars coming here, but we’ll move on to the next one.  It was fun racing up there, it just didn’t work out there at the end.”

KURT BUSCH WAS IN THE AIR ROLLING OVER YOU.  WHAT WAS IT LIKE BEING THE CAR UNDERNEATH?  “I didn’t know he was flipping at first because you’re just kind of looking at what’s in front of you and he was above me.  I saw his tire mark on my roof when I got out, so that was pretty crazy.  Thankfully, he’s okay.  Obviously, they have a lot of safe things in these cars, so I can’t thank NASCAR enough for it.”


5th - Ryan Newman

6th - Chris Buescher

8th - John Hunter Nemechek

15th - Timmy Hill

17th - Joey Gase

18th - Brad Keselowski

20th - Kevin Harvick

21st - Matt DiBenedetto

25th - Ryan Blaney

26th - Joey Logano

28th - Corey LaJoie

31st - Cole Custer 

33rd - Clint Bowyer

36th - Michael McDowell

37th - Aric Almirola

Ron Fleshman

RIS NASCAR Editor.  Has been with RIS since the middle 90's. Writes on each of the three main series of NASCAR.

Read More on Cup / XFINITY / Truck press releases
Volume 2020, Issue 10, Posted 9:51 PM, 10.04.2020