Toyota NSCS Las Vegas Post-Race Notes & Quotes

[media-credit name=”” align=”alignright” width=”300″][/media-credit]TOYOTA NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) Post-Race Notes & Quotes Las Vegas Motor Speedway – March 11, 2012

Camry driver Clint Bowyer (sixth) was the highest-finishing Toyota driver in Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Toyota drivers Joey Logano (16th), Martin Truex Jr. (17th), Mark Martin (18th) and Denny Hamlin (20th) also earned top-20 finishes at the 1.5-mile Nevada oval. Other Toyota drivers in the field included Kyle Busch (23rd), Bobby Labonte (26th), David Stremme (28th), Landon Cassill (36th), Travis Kvapil (39th), Joe Nemechek (41st) and JJ Yeley (43rd). Following Las Vegas, five Camry drivers are in the top-12 in the unofficial NSCS driver point standings — Hamlin (third), Truex (eighth), Logano (ninth), Martin (10th) and Busch (12th).

CLINT BOWYER, No. 15 5-hour ENERGY Toyota Camry, Michael Waltrip Racing Finishing Position: 6th How was your race car today? “We had a good run today in the 5-hour ENERGY Toyota. We tried to stretch there at the end and made it. That was a good call by Brian Pattie (crew chief). That was a solid top-10 finish which we really needed. We keep posting finishes like that and we’ll be good. Can’t wait to get to Bristol.”

American Muscle

JOEY LOGANO, No. 20 Dollar General Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing Finishing Position: 16th How was your race? “Our race wasn’t very good. I thought we had a top-10 car after practice. It took off at the start of the race. We were okay for 15 laps — we were second-place there running good. Then, put the brakes on in a hurry and we fell down a lot. We couldn’t find anything that helped it. We tried one way — we’d get on this side of the fence or the other side of the fence. Either way we were just as slow. We just couldn’t find any speed. It looks like our teammate Denny (Hamlin) fought a lot of the same things as us it seems like, he wasn’t very fast either. We got some work to do to figure out what’s wrong with our cars and come back and try again. Either way we salvaged something half-way decent out of it. I guess 16th could have been a lot worse — we were 21st during the last restart. We’ll take something out of it.”

How does it feel to be in the top-10 in points after three races this season? “It’s good to still be in the hunt right now. After a race like that, you think you’re going to be out of it. We’re ninth — I think we’re tied for eighth and we’re only four or five points out of fifth. We’re close and as long as we can keep being consistent and taking days like this that aren’t very good and making the most out of them — that’s what is going to be the difference at the end of the year.”

MARTIN TRUEX JR., No. 56 NAPA AUTO PARTS Toyota Camry, Michael Waltrip Racing Finishing Position: 17th What did you face during today’s race? “I just didn’t have the front grip I needed. Ever since the sun came out we just couldn’t get our NAPA Toyota better. We fought loose off and could never tighten it back up. It was the same condition we had at Texas last year. We made small wedge and air pressure changes, but we just couldn’t get it better. It’s frustrating because I know we are better than this.”

MARK MARTIN, No. 55 Aaron’s Dream Machine Toyota Camry, Michael Waltrip Racing Finishing Position: 17th How was your race? “That wasn’t a bad day for a bad day. That was a tough race. The track had a lot less grip, so what worked for us yesterday in practice didn’t work for us today. We just couldn’t turn well enough. We tried a lot of things and there at the end we got it going pretty good. But, when Matt (Kenseth) got in the wall, I saw stuff going everywhere and didn’t want to be flying into that and get us wrecked. So, we cost ourselves a bunch of spots there. We should have finished better, but we’ll be good.”

DENNY HAMLIN, No. 11 FedEx Freight Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing Finishing Position: 20th What was your team facing during the race? “Well, it was just overall lack of grip. Our car — we didn’t have very much speed in it when we got here. Usually we can make up a little bit in the race — we just stayed two-, three-tenths off pretty much all day. Even when the balance wasn’t too bad, we were just fighting speed. Guys were just driving around us. We have to go back and analyze it and think about the things we need to work on at these big tracks.”

Have you been able to pinpoint what your team needs to work on? “Well, my key message to Darian (Grubb, crew chief) and the engineering staff is I don’t think we need to analyze that we missed the setup crazy this week. I think it’s more the things we do at the shop. We need to build some speed in the car. Don’t worry necessarily about the setup this week — let’s just concentrate on getting some speed out of these cars.”

KYLE BUSCH, No. 18 M&M’s Brown Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing Finishing Position: 23rd How was your race? “We started in the back and we were able to move up through the field at the start. We ended up taking four tires on our second stop when everyone else took two and lost our track position. Then we got into the oil from the 93 (Travis Kvapil) car blowing up and I got into the fence. Between that and not being able to keep up with the way the track changed, we just couldn’t end up recovering from losing the track position. Just a long and frustrating day.”

BOBBY LABONTE, No. 47 Kingsford Toyota Camry, JTG-Daugherty Racing Finishing Position: 26th

DAVID STREMME, No. 30 Inception Motorsports Toyota Camry, Inception Motorsports Finishing Position: 28th

LANDON CASSILL, No. 83 Burger King Toyota Camry, BK Racing Finishing Position: 36th

TRAVIS KVAPIL, No. 93 Burger King Toyota Camry, BK Racing Finishing Position: 39th

JOE NEMECHEK, No. 87 AM/FM Energy Wood & Pellet Stoves Toyota Camry, NEMCO Motorsports Finishing Position: 41st

JJ YELEY, No. 49 America Israel Racing Toyota Camry, America Israel Racing Finishing Position: 43rd

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