Ford Performance – NCS Pocono Post-Race Quotes

Ford Finishing Results:

4th – Kevin Harvick

8th – Harrison Burton

12th – Aric Almirola

15th – Todd Gilliland

16th – Brad Keselowski

18th – Chris Buescher

19th – Michael McDowell

23rd – Austin Cindric

25th – Cole Custer

26th – JJ Yeley

29th – Chase Briscoe

30th – Ryan Blaney

31st – Ryan Preece

35th – Joey Logano

 

KEVIN HARVICK, No. 4 Busch Light Peach Ford Mustang – WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO HAVE A GOOD FINISH IN YOUR LAST RACE AT POCONO? “I would have rather won, but I think we just have to keep ourselves in the mix, keep doing what we’re doing and you just never know how these things are gonna play out. We needed the front in clean air and we never really got that. Our car just struggled in traffic on that first lap of the restarts to get going with the front tires, but it was a strange race. I didn’t ever think that that strategy would play out like it did, running where we were and then have it cycle all through. You’ve just got to keep going every lap. They know what they’re doing up there and let it play out.”

 

THE PRE-RACE WITH LOGANO AND THE KIDS. WHAT WAS THAT LIKE? “Fun. I think to be able to have fun with that type of stuff so many years later, and I have a good relationship with Joey. He’s got three kids now and I’ve got two kids and neither one of us are in charge anymore, so it’s fun to just laugh about it.”

 

RICHMOND NEXT WEEK AFTER WINNING LAST YEAR. WHAT CAN YOU TAKE TO THAT RACE? “We ran well there at the beginning of the year. We just needed to be a touch better, so we’re looking forward to it.”

 

WAS IT MORE AGGRESSIVE THAN USUAL TODAY AT POCONO? “Not really.”

 

 

HARRISON BURTON, No. 21 DEX Imaging Ford Mustang – “It was a good finish for us. We were mired in traffic all day and that makes it hard, and we struggled for handling but made a few changes at the end and that got the car pretty good right before the long green flag cycle and I could kind of run long. A lot of those guys pitted themselves into traffic and we were able to have clean air and click off faster lap times. We pitted and came out in front of a lot of those guys, so that helped us a lot. The strategy at Pocono is always fun, so it’s fun to kind of know what’s going on and know that you have to go run fast laps because the guys behind you are trying to do the same. It worked out to where we pitted out in front of them. The guys did a good job on pit road to do that and the last few restarts I just tried to be aggressive and keep moving forward and got a few more spots. It was a decent day for us.”

 

HOW BADLY DID THIS TEAM NEED A RESULT LIKE THIS? “The last two weekends have been better for us. This weekend I was disappointed the first little bit because it wasn’t very good, and then found a way to keep digging and claw out of it. Last weekend was the opposite. The first three-quarters of the race was really good and then the end just got cycled back on some restarts. It’s good to finish on the good side of it this weekend and keep fighting through the day and not give up on making the race car better. We definitely did that. It’s a good finish for us, like I said, and I’m proud of our guys. There’s not a lot of quit on this race team. We’ve been through hell and high water, but we’re still fighting.”

 

 

RYAN BLANEY, No. 12 Advance Auto Parts Ford Mustang – “It stinks. We got the lead and had it for two laps and then we had our issue. We’ll have to figure out what it was, but, overall, I’m proud of the effort. We brought a pretty good car and got it better throughout the day. It’s just one of those things that happens every now and then. I essentially lost 100 horsepower. We’ll have to look at it, but it laid down pretty flat pretty quick.

 

 

JOEY LOGANO, No. 22 Verizon Ford Mustang – BEFORE YOU GOT TOWED WAS THERE ANY DAMAGE TO THE CAR OTHER THAN THE TIRES? “Yeah, there was some damage from hitting the wall. The left-rear toe link. I think some control arms also got bent, but towing the car two miles didn’t do any favors, for sure. It just doesn’t make any sense. We’ve been fighting these cars for two years now with four flat tires when a car spins out, and you get this long, horrible ride back. It’s rough. Your head is bouncing around in there. It’s stupid. It’s just really dumb that we can’t just put four tires on a truck. I saw a whole bunch of them earlier today. I did something for Verizon and I saw at least 25 trucks. If we can put four tires on one of them with a jack and an impact that can just change the tires and let us come back, instead of dragging the car two miles around the racetrack, it’s just stupid. It’s not fun for anybody. The poor guy driving the tow truck. The poor driver getting his head knocked around for two miles and the poor team that’s got to fix the underbodies of these things after they get dragged around. It’s dumb. I don’t know. It is what it is, but it seems like it has a very easy fix. I’ve brought this up before, but I guess it doesn’t matter.”

 

ARE GUYS JUST BEING TOO AGGRESSIVE ON THE RESTARTS INTO TURN ONE? “You’ve got to be aggressive today. Passing is tough. Cars are equally matched. You see that all the time and track position is key. Why did you see the second place car pit at the end of the stage and not take points? Because they knew how important track position was gonna be. That’s why I had to make an aggressive move down the center. That’s why everybody is making aggressive moves on the starts and you eventually run out of real estate. Unfortunately, we were the ones that got caught up.”

 

WHAT TRIGGERED THAT FROM YOUR PERSPECTIVE? “Just a lot of jostling, for sure. I had a run down the center, which is great and that was gonna put me in a really good spot into turn one, and my car fired off really well in turn one. We’ve seen that in the restart before that, so I felt real confident about putting myself in a tough position because I knew my car could handle well, and it just started squeezing up and when I came back up to avoid the cars on the inside the outside of me I had to check up just a little bit and it just got the 34 into my right-rear. It turns so quick that there’s no chance of saving it, just turn it around and then you kind of slide and hope not to get hit, which, luckily no one hit me, but the wall did enough damage.”

 

THE EXPLANATION YOU GAVE SOUNDS REASONABLE. WHAT IS THE OTHER SIDE OF WHY THEY CAN’T GIVE YOU TIRES TO DRIVE BACK? “I don’t know. Here’s the deal, I talked to someone today and they see a race car once a year. That’s not fair to the people working out there on the racetrack that they don’t have a lot of experience. I mean, they may be doing it for years, so don’t put it in the context that these guys don’t know what they’re doing, but the experience level of doing something every single week versus seeing a race car once a year is tough. That’s really hard and we’re all in a position out there while I’m sitting there watching cars go by me with a chance of getting a good finish being left as I’m trying to communicate to somebody and they can’t hear me or listen or they’re trying to figure out what to do. They don’t know that you can’t push a car with four flat tires on it. The car doesn’t steer. I’m trying to tell them to hook it up and they kept trying to push me. We wasted a lap-and-a-half before they tried to hook it. There’s a better way to do it.”

 

IF YOU WERE ABLE TO GET FOUR TIRES ON IT OUT THERE, DO YOU THINK YOU WOULD STILL BE RACING? “No. We would have saved the hassle of dragging around the racetrack. The damage was done from the wall. We would have saved a lap-and-a-half of time for all the fans to be out there watching cars racing, instead of seeing my butt being towed around backwards, so you would have saved a little bit of racing time there and probably not getting our head shook around for a little bit.”

 

Ford Performance PR