NASCAR Winston Cup Series ACDelco 400: Post Qual Quotes - Chevy Drivers
26 October 1997
NASCAR Winston Cup Series Chevrolet Qualify Quotes ACDelco 400 North Carolina Motor Speedway October 24, 1997 ROCKINGHAM, NC - The following provided by Chevrolet Motor Division, General Motors Corporation Public Relations: STEVE GRISSOM (#41 Kodiak Monte Carlo) - Did not qualify, 37th - "That's about what we ran in practice. I'm a little disappointed because I thought we could pick up a little bit." JEFF GORDON (#24 DuPont Automotive Refinishes Monte Carlo) - Qualified 6th - "That's all we had for 'em. That was a pretty good lap for us. Ray (crew chief Evernham) told me he was going to give me a tenth and I had to find a tenth. I think I found a couple hundredths, and he definitely found a tenth. With the cooler temperatures, it's tough to get it around here feeling comfortable for one lap. That's definitely better than we'd been all day in practice. "I don't see how we could have got too much more out of it. The car got in the corners good, and I was just floating the back end through the corners. It was still cutting and driving forward. We were further off than that earlier today, so we closed up the gap. It was good enough to put us in the top 10. "We've got to go out there Sunday and try to win the race and try to run up front. I think every championship is different. If we had a huge lead right now, maybe I would think about the points, but I don't. The margin I have is very small. When you've got guys like Mark Martin and Dale Jarrett chasing you, as fast and as hard as they're running, they're going out there to win races. Those are the guys we have to run with for this championship, so we've got to go out there and try to win. I like having the points lead. We're still doing our job and running well. We know those guys have to catch us. At the same time, you can't make mistakes. If you get off your game plan, that's when you start making mistakes. Those guys have to step it up. They've got to go out there and win races so they can make up the points on us. We're running in the top five and top 10 every weekend. It's going to be interesting. "We usually have good luck here in the spring and bad luck here in the fall. We're going to try to change that this time. That qualifying right there was the first step. We're pretty happy with it. This is a different car than we had here the first time this year. You've got to come with the best thing you've got in the shop. This is the car we ran at Bristol earlier this year. It was a real strong car, and I think it's the best thing we've got for 'em. We feel like it's capable of winning here." KEN SCHRADER (#33 Skoal Bandit Monte Carlo) - Did not qualify; 38th - "We've been struggling since we got here, and we haven't figured out what's wrong. We'll work on it Saturday and try to get things sorted out before the race." DAVID GREEN (#96 Caterpillar Monte Carlo) - Qualified 15th - "We made an air pressure adjustment in the right rear. We thought we might be a little too loose because I was here in the spring. It never got that way, but we'll take that. I picked up from practice, and that's what we need to do every time. The year is almost over, and this qualifying has helped make my hair even grayer." MIKE SKINNER (#31 Lowe's Monte Carlo) - Qualified 10th - "We tried to duplicate what we ran this morning in practice. At Rockingham, if you screw up the first day, you're going to run slower on the second day. I'd say nine times out of 10, you're going to run slower on the second day anyway. They're calling for rain, and we've already got two poles this season. We just wanted to get in the race. That's the kind of lap I ran. I was probably a little bit too conservative. We had a little better car than that, but I was a little nervous about trying for the pole today." STERLING MARLIN (#4 Kodak Gold Film Monte Carlo) - Did not qualify; 35th - "We were just tight. We'd been faster than that in practice. That wasn't exactly what we wanted. I'm not sure what the deal was. We're going to go back up there in the trailer and try to figure it out. We're not too crazy about the idea of having to pit on the backstretch, but we'll have a good car for the race." JOE NEMECHEK (#42 BellSouth Monte Carlo) - Qualified 19th - "We picked up from practice. I guess it's these new colors. I got loose, but through (turns) one and two the car was awesome. The back end stepped out about halfway through (turns) three and four. I had to come off the throttle and it hurt me. We were hoping we could run a 23.40, but the guys are doing a great job. This is the car we ran at Charlotte. It ran good in the race there, so we're looking forward to a good run." RICKY CRAVEN (#25 Budweiser Monte Carlo) - Qualified 9th - "It got sideways on me getting in the corner, but that was the fastest lap we had. It's hard to have a fast lap here that's good or real bad. We wrestled the steering wheel all the way around, but we had a great engine. We've had an up and down year, but we've got a great group of guys. We're going to work hard to finish out the year on a positive note and get after it in '98." DALE EARNHARDT (#3 GM Goodwrench Service Plus Monte Carlo) - Did not qualify; 26th - "That's better than we practiced, but we should have been a little better. A low .60 would have been real good. It's going to be real tight. I hope nobody beats me out for a frontstretch pit. It sure would have been nice if we could have held on to 25th, but that's the way it goes."