1st, CARL EDWARDS
7th, DENNY HAMLIN
13th, MATT KENSETH
17th, KYLE BUSCH
18th, DAVID RAGAN
26th, CLINT BOWYER
35th, MATT DiBENEDETTO
40th, JOSH WISE
41st, JEB BURTON
CARL EDWARDS, No. 19 Sport Clips Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing
Starting Position: 1st
How was your qualifying effort?
“The car was super-fast in practice and I can’t thank Sport Clips enough for coming on board to be on the car here and in Kansas – two really big races for me. We got a great start to the Chase and we’ve just keeping that rolling. We knew qualifying here’d be important, so we worked on that a lot today. The guys have been working really hard. The cars are good. TRD (Toyota Racing Development) helped me a lot. I’m starting to really enjoy coming to New Hampshire.”
Is it difficult to advance the final qualifying round?
“It is tough and this place is simple, so it’s pretty straightforward, but one little mistake here or there can cost you a lot. I really had to step it up. I almost didn’t make the third round and had to actually kind of get myself going there that last round like, ‘Man, you’ve got to do this and it’s a tough place to decide where to be aggressive, but our car was easy to drive and that’s what made it – put us up front.”
How is your Camry for Sunday?
“To be honest, that third round surprised me how fast we were and I really – I think it helped me almost to struggled through the second round because I was like, ‘To heck with it,’ and I just kind of went for it the third round and the car has a ton of speed, so I hate to admit how poorly I drove it the first and second round, but I think it really says a lot about how fast the car is. Now we work on race trim and we we’re in the same position in the first race here and we didn’t really – we didn’t execute during the race. We were kind of off and I think we learned a bunch from that, so hopefully we can be a lot better here.”
How strong is the Camry?
“It’s really amazing how this JGR (Joe Gibbs Racing) group is working together. I can’t thank Sport Clips for coming on board enough. They’ll be on the car here and at Kansas. All the guys at TRD (Toyota Racing Development) – we worked really hard this week and we’re giving 100 percent for the Chase. It’s a good way to start the race.”
Will you have to wait for practice tomorrow to know how strong the car is for the race?
“We’ll have to wait until tomorrow. It’s like Groundhog Day, we did this in the spring and we didn’t get the car right for the race and I think we learned a bunch from that. Now we’ll work on it. This place is tough and once the sun comes out, you get a little rubber on the track tomorrow then we’ll be good.”
DENNY HAMLIN, No. 11 FedEx Freight Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing
Starting Position: 7th
Were you happy with the car in qualifying?
“If I could have got more out of the car in the earlier sessions, we wouldn’t have had to put so many laps on our tires and been at such a disadvantage on that last run. Still pretty happy with the FedEx Freight Camry — felt like I lacked a little bit of speed early in those runs and it seemed like that kind of bit us in that late session.”
With last week’s victory, can you gamble more this weekend to get another win?
“We definitely want to go for a win as well as we would any week, but this one in particular if there’s a chance for us to roll the dice a little bit more maybe with fuel strategy we’ll do that or with tires, we’ll try that. Won’t get too far off track I wouldn’t think because you want to keep that momentum that we’ve built up over the last few months.”
How is your approach different after the victory last weekend?
“Our approach is obviously different now, we don’t care about average finishes much. I think early in these rounds obviously your average finish matters – you have to make sure you don’t make any mistakes. You don’t want to have any 25th or worse races. That really puts you in a hole with maybe a race or two to go before cutoff. I think it’s eliminating your bad races is your biggest thing over trying to go out there and throw a ‘Hail Mary’ and try to get a win.”
MATT KENSETH, No. 20 Dollar General Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing
Starting Position: 13th
How was your qualifying effort?
“Our balance was okay. Round one I thought we got it all and round two I tried a little harder than the first lap and it just didn’t have it in it – kind of missed the corners – so the second lap made sure we hit everything perfect and I thought I got everything I could out of it. We just didn’t have quite enough speed and we didn’t have enough time to cool down and make a second run. Wish we had a little more speed too. Felt good in race trim today, so we’ll just work on it tomorrow and hopefully get it up front on Sunday.”
KYLE BUSCH, No. 18 Pedigree Toyota Camry, Joe Gibbs Racing
Starting Position: 17th
What did you struggle with in qualifying?
“Just didn’t have the speed we needed here today in qualifying trim. If I tried to run too hard into the corner, I got way loose. We’ve got two practice sessions to work on this No. 18 Pedigree Camry tomorrow, so I feel confident we can make the necessary adjustments to be in good shape for Sunday.”
DAVID RAGAN, No. 55 Aaron’s Dream Machine Toyota Camry, Michael Waltrip Racing
Starting Position: 18th
CLINT BOWYER, No. 15 5-hour ENERGY Toyota Camry, Michael Waltrip Racing
Starting Position: 26th
MATT DiBENEDETTO, No. 83 Cosmo Motors Toyota Camry, BK Racing
Starting Position: 35th
JOSH WISE, No. 26 Maxim Toyota Camry, BK Racing
Starting Position: 40th
JEB BURTON, No. 23 Bullhorn Toyota Camry, BK Racing
Starting Position: 41st