Ford Performance NASCAR: Talladega Cup Qualifying

Ford Performance Notes and Quotes
Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series (MENCS)
Saturday, April 27, 2019
EVENT: GEICO 500 – Qualifying

RICKY STENHOUSE JR., No. 17 Fifth Third Bank Ford Mustang
Qualified: 6th
“I didn’t really have any feelings before today. I don’t care what the package is. Speedway racing is speedway racing. We are all going to be close together and learn a lot tomorrow. I don’t think anybody learned anything in Friday’s session. We had one session with this package. We will learn throughout the day tomorrow and make sure we learn as much as we can so that we can do the right thing at the end of the race to put ourselves in position to win.”

ARIC ALMIROLA, No. 10 Smithfield Ford Mustang
Qualified: 2nd
“I think we got pretty close to backing up what we ran in the first round there but I felt like the win picked up a little bit more. I don’t know if that was it or what the case was. All in all, it was a great run for us. I am happy about starting on the front row with good track position to start the race and a good pit stall. All those things matter.”

RYAN BLANEY, No. 12 Menards/Knauf Ford Mustang
Qualified: 7th
“We got some drafting runs on Friday and I thought it helped. Especially when you have a new package like this. This package is way different than what we had and I think you will see a way different race that we have seen here the past few years. It is new and exciting and there are going to be a lot of lead changes and comers and goers and you just get massive runs on people. That is pretty neat. It will be exciting for sure.”

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CLINT BOWYER, No. 14 Toco Warranty Ford Mustang
Qualified: 3rd
HOW WAS YOUR CAR? “So far so good. I actually was surprised that we picked up as much as we did that second lap. We made a little adjustment on the car and woke it up. We picked up a little over a tenth or so. I was excited about that. I was sitting on the couch watching the Xfinity race and usually you are watching that and learning but the whole time I was watching today I kept thinking, ‘Man, I don’t know I am going to be doing that tomorrow.’ I think the face of the race and what you are going to see is drastically changed with the way those cars are pulling up and racing. It is easy to have something new and get excited and oversell it a little bit. It will probably calm down on the long runs. I hope so fora little while. If not, it will be difficult to find a place to hide. That is what you are going to need to do, hide an automobile to keep it from flying through the air.”

JOEY LOGANO, No. 22 MoneyLion Ford Mustang
Qualified: 8th
HARVICK SAYS THERE WILL HAVE TO BE MORE RESPECT AMONG THE DRIVERS SO THAT THERE ISN’T CHAOS. WHAT DO YOU THINK? “I would agree. The runs are bigger and they come really fast and if you throw one of those late blocks, it is going to be chaos, or even if you realize a car is coming at you four or five mile per hour faster, you can’t stop that very well. Before, you could see it coming and everything happens a little slower motion. It will be really fast now. If cars are willing to make late moves, there is going to be a penalty to pay and unfortunately it is going to be cars that had nothing to do with it that get tied up in it. Everyone needs to give each other some room and learn what we can and can’t do early in the race.”

BRAD KESELOWSKI, No. 2 Snap On Ford Mustang
Qualified: 4th
“We will run and try to get to the front. Same as we always have. We will control what we can control. Hopefully we will be the one to win.”

YOU WERE THE MASTER AT BLOCKING AND GETTING IN FRONT OF RUNS. CAN YOU DO THAT HERE NOW? “Track position is going to be really important. If you can get out front and to the lead that is going to be really helpful, just like before. You are going to see a lot of shuffling in the middle of the field the entire race. I don’t think you will see single-file to the wall because the cars are getting such bigger runs. We will see. I have been wrong before.”

WILL YOU STILL BE ABLE TO WORK WITH TEAMMATES OR WILL THAT BE HARDER? “I don’t know. It could be a little tougher. I could see that. I really need to get a race under my belt to understand exactly what we are going to see.”

RYAN NEWMAN, No. 6 Acorns Ford Mustang
Qualified: 24th
“I think it is raw speed and the fact that the cars are higher in the back. I think that is the biggest concern in my eyes. The big runs and all that stuff, we have had that in the past. We have had no runs in the past and had boring races. There is a balance to all of it. I just hope everybody makes it through safe. It is what every drivers wife’s biggest concern.”

DO YOU REALLY EXPECT HERE AT TALLADEGA FOR THE REST OF THE FIELD TO GIVE EVERYONE A LITTLE EXTRA RESPECT? “I think it will for a little bit but not for 188 laps. At some point it goes out the window and it just matters how many cars are still running good at that point.”

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