Edwards Finishes Fifth in Darlington Nextel Cup Race
ROBBY GORDON – No. 7 Menards/MAPEI Ford Fusion (Finished 38th) – “If you take a look at the right side of this car, it’s obvious to see what got us back here. I just got into the wall a couple of times. I got into the wall about lap 15 and I’m gonna say I’ve hit it about six times by now. I think we bent the rear end back or something, but it’s just extremely loose. We had to come in and work on it before NASCAR tells us to come in and work on it.”
KEN SCHRADER – No. 21 Motorcraft Ford Fusion (Finished 41st) – “We cut a tire. When I got into David Ragan on the yellow before that, I messed up the front end. We thought we had it all fixed. Maybe we did and maybe we didn’t, but we cut a right-front.”
CARL EDWARDS – No. 99 Office Depot Ford Fusion (Finished 5th) – “My guys did a great job. I guess I got onto pit road wrong and we got a penalty, but I had fun. This is the greatest race track we go to by far. They need to build about 10 more of these all over the country. We need to race at them once a month for sure. This is a blast.” WHAT ABOUT THE BATTLE AT THE END? “It’s crazy, but that’s what makes this place so great is you can race so hard. My hat’s off to Jeff Gordon and those guys. They did a great job, but our Office Depot team did great today. This is the best finish we’ve had in a while and I’m really proud of them.” WHAT HAPPENED WITH THE PIT ROAD INCIDENT? “I don’t know exactly what happened. I guess my right sides weren’t on the commitment line. I just did everything I could to get to pit road and I guess I messed it up.” WHAT ABOUT A FIFTH-PLACE FINISH. “It was a lot of fun. I appreciate all of the fans sticking around for the race today and I hope everybody had a good Mother’s Day. It was a lot of fun for me. This is my favorite race track. Congratulations to Jeff and those guys. They’ve been on a roll and it’s awesome to see somebody do that well, but we’re creeping back up and we’ll go onto wherever we’re racing next and have a good time.” WAS THE RACING ANY DIFFERENT WITH THIS CAR? “It was pretty good for me. You could hit the wall harder with these cars and not mess them up, so that was fun. It was just a fun race. I thought they did a good job here. I wasn’t too happy with these cars at Phoenix and Richmond, but this was all right.” YOU AND MATT LED SOME LAPS. DO YOU FEEL YOU’RE GAINING SOME GROUND? “Yeah, we’re gaining some ground. We’ve got guys that are working really hard on it and I’m really proud of everybody. It’s neat to lead some laps and run really well, qualify well, it was good.”
MATT KENSETH – No. 17 DeWalt Ford Fusion (Finished 7th) – “I feel like we’re gaining on it. We’re not where we need to be, but I feel like we’re definitely gaining on it. Before the sun came out, we weren’t the car to beat, but we made some adjustments and got up within the top five cars and actually led a little bit. The cars are just very, very sensitive – at least ours are. The sun came out and it just really threw the car for a loop and we could never get it back.” DID YOUR BRAKE ISSUES HAMPER THE CAR AT ALL? “A little bit. I probably should have insisted on something else, but these cars use the brakes a lot more than the old cars. You can’t run the old braking system, you’ve got to run bigger stuff. I don’t think it made a difference at the very end for our finishing position, but it didn’t help anything.”
JAMIE MCMURRAY – No. 26 Crown Royal Ford Fusion (Finished 16th) – “It was just terrible at the beginning. All of the Roush setups were pretty close and I knew that Carl was leading at one point and we weren’t much different. Apparently what worked for him wasn’t working for us. We were just really, really loose so the guys adjusted on it and we got a little better, and then the next adjustment was really good. I thought we were like an eighth to a tenth-place car and we just kind of ran there for like 100-150 laps. Everything was good and we came in and pitted and then went back out and it was just undriveable – tight. We kind of thought we got a bad set of tires and then we put another set of tires on and it was a little bit better, but it still wasn’t the way it had been early in the race. I hit the wall a couple of times. I might have knocked something out of whack, I don’t think so, or maybe the race track just changed and we didn’t keep up with it.” HOW IS YOUR ARM? “My arm is a little sore, but my butt and my right leg are just numb. I’m gonna get it looked at tomorrow. I don’t know if I’ve got a nerve pinched or what, but you pull those seatbelts so tight around your collarbone and everything. I’ve gotten in there before and had my leg fall asleep, but just nothing like today. To have your right leg and your left arm fall asleep, that’s a job at Darlington.”
GREG BIFFLE – No. 16 Ameriquest Ford Fusion (Finished 15th) – “It just wasn’t what we wanted. I don’t know. The car just didn’t drive like I anticipated it to drive. It was just on top of the track and never really got any grip. I just kind of held on all day. I kind of got hurt by the 2 car at the end. He knocked me out of the way when we were three-wide. The 1 was in the fence and everybody kind of checked up and he ran into the back of me twice and just knocked me out of the way. That probably cost us about five spots. We could have had a top 10, but, still, that’s not what we came for.”
RICKY RUDD – No. 88 Snickers Ford Fusion (Finished 26th) – “We had somebody’s tear-off wrapped around our front end. I think that happened on lap 20 and we had to stop. It boiled over and had to stop to put water in it. We lost two laps there and then we ended up losing another one on the track. At best we were a mid-pack car, but after that tear-off deal we weren’t good enough to get our laps back, so we just went into the survival mode.”
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