JEFF GORDON, NO. 24 3M CHEVROLET SS – Pole Winner:
THAT WAS A STOUT LAP:
“Well, I didn’t come off the throttle much, if any; I know I had to blip it just the tiniest, tiniest bit. The lap before, in the second session, I was a little conservative and the car just stuck so good, I thought when I heard some of the lap times that were up there, I knew that we were going to go get the pole. You’ve got to be fully committed and just go for it. So, I drove it down into (Turn) 1; I may have come off of it just a tiny bit, but it wasn’t much at all. And it stuck so good, I was like okay. Do I run wide open through (Turns) 3 and 4? I don’t know. It was real close. There was a lot of wide-open throttle there. It was fun. What an awesome 3M Chevrolet. What a turnaround from last week. I’m just so proud of this team and keeping their heads up. Last week was a tough one, and this is a great, great way to start out weekend here in Las Vegas."
KASEY KAHNE, NO. 5 TIME WARNER CABLE CHEVROLET SS – QUALIFIED 3RD
ON HIS QUALIFYING RUN:
“Man it’s a great car. Jeff (Gordon) just found a little more than I did basically. My car is so good. We kept making gains. I screwed up a little on my second run, got loose into (Turn) 3 and had to back pedal. So we had to make another run and was able to advance. The right adjustments Keith (Rodden, crew chief) made and then he adjusted even better for the final round. We even went a couple of tenths quicker it was crazy."
YOU HAD TO MAKE TWO RUNS IN ROUND 2 TO MAKE IT TO ROUND 3, BUT IT PAID OFF
“Yeah, I had a great Time Warner Cable Chevrolet there. The guys made great calls to make the car better. We went the wrong way on one adjustment and got loose into (Turn) 3, so we had to make two runs in the second round. I wish we would have at least got second there. We were so close to (Joey) Logano. But Jeff (Gordon) put a heck of a lap down. I thought my lap was really solid, but Jeff outdid it by a good bit there."
IT LOOKS LIKE THE WHOLE HENDRICK MOTORSPORTS GROUP IS REALLY STRONG THIS WEEKEND WHAT DO YOU THINK YOU HAVE FOR SUNDAY?
“Yeah, so far it’s been good, as far as qualifying goes. We have all had really good speed. So that is just a lot of people working hard to make that happen around all of Hendrick Motorsports."
|Dale Jr. will start 4th|
DALE EARNHARDT, JR., NO. 88 NATIONWIDE CHEVROLET SS – QUALIFIED 4TH
ON HIS QUALIFYING RUN:
“I’m not surprised really when the No. 24, No. 48 and No. 5 qualify well. I expect to see those guys up there. We just didn’t qualify well last year and the year before, hell for four or five years we haven’t qualified well at all. Man Greg (Ives) and Kevin (Meendering) all the engineers the car chief Travis Mack all the guys are working their butts off. They are doing a great job just really giving me a fun car. That car was so fun right there, real easy. I wasn’t worried about the car or concerned with the balance of the car. The car was really underneath me. We were able to just work away and just not hustle and not up out of the race track and worried. Really really happy man, just two weeks in a row we have done great on the 1.5-miles. I hope it is a sign of things to come. Definitely going to help us race better being able to qualify better. We have been hurting ourselves real bad over the last couple of years not qualifying well making it difficult in them races."
HOW MUCH DID YOUR CAR CHANGE FROM PRACTICE TO THAT FINAL ROUND?
“It got a whole lot better. So, I’m happy about that. We just were having a challenge through the bumps in (Turns) 1 and 2 during practice and all the guys got together and worked real hard on the car. Man, that thing was so much fun to drive! I hope it’s a sign of things to come. We’ve really turned around our program as far as qualifying goes, because that makes the races a whole lot easier."
KYLE LARSON, NO. 42 TARGET CHEVROLET SS – QUALIFIED 5TH
YOU HAVE BEEN FAST ALL DAY IT LOOKED LIKE YOU HAD A SHOT AT THE POLE:
“Yeah, I thought so. I’m a little bit disappointed; actually really disappointed I’m fifth. Happy we have had a lot of speed in our Target Chevy. We are really good in race trim too so we will try and have a good day tomorrow and be good on Sunday."
RYAN NEWMAN, NO. 31 CATERPILLAR CHEVROLET SS – QUALIFIED 7TH
ON HIS QUALIFYING RUN:
“That was all I had. It was just a little blip in the middle on (Turns) 1 and 2 and wide open through (Turns) 3 and 4. The cars are going too fast. I mean even in qualifying. It shouldn't’t be a horsepower war we don’t need to use qualifying as a chassis dyno. But I’m proud of the guys the Caterpillar Chevrolet did a good job and we improved every time. We also improved on our practice position. Race trim felt pretty good today and we will switch back over to that."
MARTIN TRUEX, JR., NO. 78 FURNITURE ROW CHEVROLET SS – Qualified 8th:
A CAREER BEST START FOR YOU AT LAS VEGAS. WHAT WAS YOUR STRATEGY IN TRYING TO MANEUVER AROUND THE BUMPS?
“My car didn’t like the bumps quite as much as I hoped it would. I had to give up probably just a little bit of speed down there getting into (Turn) 1 and run just a little bit lower than I wanted to in order to get maximum speed off of (Turn) 2. So, we probably gave up a little bit there. But, all in all, it was a good day for our Furniture Row team. They guys are doing a great job. We changed a lot of stuff for qualifying. We weren’t that good in practice, so, thumbs-up to the guys. They got a good starting spot for us."
JAMIE MCMURRAY, NO. 1 CESSNA CHEVROLET SS – Qualified 10th
ON HIS LAP
“It’s really fun to be able to run that quick around here and almost run wide-open. I felt like in (Turns) 1 and 2, I was pretty much flat-out. I was like literally having to pull on the wheel and force yourself to keep the accelerator down. And my car was a little bit tight, so I was really expecting it to be tight through (Turns) 3 and 4 and when I got down there, I pulled on the wheel and it just wasn’t underneath me. I’m disappointed that we’re 10th, but I’m also happy that we didn’t tear a car up there. That’ could have been a really bad wreck. It was a really good day for our whole group. When Kyle (Larson) and I were first and second, in the second session, I could see all of the guys behind pit road wall when I came in and I could see the smiles on their faces. Our organization has come so far in the last couple of years. We ended last year really strong and you never know how this year is going to start out. But both cars are really fast again and it’s a huge effort by everyone who works in our shop. It’s exciting. I’m disappointed that we’re 10th, but I think we have a good car for Sunday."
KEVIN HARVICK, NO. 4 JIMMY JOHN’S/BUDWEISER CHEVROLET SS – Qualified 18th
HOW MUCH DID THIS RACE TRACK CHANGE FROM ONE ROUND TO THE SECOND ROUND?
“It didn’t change much. We’ve just been off on speed in qualifying trim, for whatever reason. We’ve been a couple tenths off since we went into qualifying trim. So, we’ll just keep working on it. Our Jimmy John’s team will do a great job and we’ll work hard and get it right for race trim."
AUSTIN DILLON, NO. 3 DOW CHEVROLET SS – Qualified 25th
HOW WAS THE CAR?
“Oh, it was all right. We got it tight the second run. Man, the speeds picked-up so much from practice right there. I wasn’t expecting all that. I should have gotten a little bit more on that first run. We would have been fine. We just need just a little bit of transfer and it would have been okay for the second round. The Dow guys worked hard. We have to work a little harder. Our race trim run was really good today. So, I’m looking forward to the race and the Xfinity car was also really fast."