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NASCAR Winston Cup ITW DeVilbiss 400: Post Race Quotes from the Winner

18 August 1997

 NASCAR Winston Cup Series
 Winner Post-Race Quotes
 ITW DeVilbiss 400
 Michigan Speedway
 August 17, 1997

BROOKLYN, MI - The following provided by Michigan Speedway Public Relations:

MARK MARTIN (#6 Valvoline/Cummins Ford Thunderbird) - Started 2nd, finished 
1st - ON LOSING 2 LAPS DUE TO A CUT LEFT REAR TIRE ON LAP 86 - "I felt it get 
a little bit squirrelly-feeling on the front straightaway and I slightly 
eased into (turn) one, that was the only way I saved it. It was all over the 
place when I got into the corner. In fact, I couldn't figure out why it kept 
getting like that because I was slowed down enough I thought I could control 
it and I still was out of control. We came back from it. We had the car to do 
it today. Now I think I know how the Kid (Jeff Gordon) feels on Sunday a lot. 
I had the car today. He's usually got the car. We had the program today. We 
had the fuel mileage. We had everything we needed to win."

IS THIS YOUR YEAR? - "We're serious about it and I hope this shows it today."

but I would definitely take it. This is one of the greatest tracks I've raced 
on, as well as California. We now have two ultimate tracks on the circuit. 
There is wide racing here so it enables you to still go forward when you are 
behind. I just love racing here."

ON CUT TIRE - "I was extremely busy. I didn't have time to be disappointed. 
My first response was to hold on to it. I almost lost it, but got it under 
control and was forced to drive a lot slower than I would have liked. With 
pieces of tire flying everywhere, my concentration was scattered. When I 
realized we were 2 laps down, I knew I had to get into 'points-racing mode' 
and get back to work. Once I got my lap back, I realized winning was 
realistic. I haven't had a car this good in a long time. It's the best car so 
far. We used it at Texas and California. I feel really good about winning and 
running so well in the point standings. I definitely went through a crisis 
last year with not winning a race. I didn't understand why we weren't winning 
with such an outstanding race team. I'm not 29 or 30 years old anymore, so I 
began to wonder what happened. We were used to winning at least 2 to 3 times 
a year. We are out to win races and be taken seriously by the media and the 
fans. You don't get here by being a bunch of goofups. I capitalized on every 
opportunity I could."

ON TEAMMATES - "Burton and Musgrave are the best guys you could have at Roush 
Racing. I'm honored to be a teammate with them and I'd feel the same if they 
were somewhere else. I even dreamt last night that Ted won and I'll be the 
first one to jump up and cheer for him. Jeff Burton has taught me a lot. 
Even with all my experience, that's quite a compliment to him. Not it's time 
to turn up the heat for the championship."

JACK ROUSH (Winning car owner) - "Mark is such a tenacious racer by any 
moral, acceptable means. Mark and the crew work just marvelous together. It's 
pretty awesome to come back from two laps down. The only other time we've 
ever done that was at Bristol. There was an awful lot of pressure as I looked 
at the sky and in the end we wanted a race exactly like this one. When we had 
the flat tire, we used the caution to our advantage to win."

(Martin) 'What percentage of other drivers do you think would let you have 
your lap back?' and he said, 'Very few.' There are a very few opportunities 
where team racing comes into play to assist with a victory -- this was one of