Race Weekend Central

Running Their Mouth: 2009 Sunoco Red Cross Pennsylvania 500 at Pocono

Each week, we’ll go through media reports, interviews, PR and all of our own stuff to find the best quotes from the Sprint Cup race, capturing the story of how the weekend unfolded. It’s the most original commentary you’ll ever find: the truth, coming straight out of the mouths of the drivers, crew members and car owners themselves. This week, here’s a peek at what the drivers were thinking following the rain delayed Sunoco Red Cross Pennsylvania 500 at Pocono Raceway:

“We’ve come close in a lot of races this year and come up short. Definitely have some angels with us today. Patrick’s (Mullen, tire specialist) mom passed away a couple weeks ago, and my grandmother (Thelma Clark) a few days ago. We got with the No. 00 (David Reutimann) and I’ve got to apologize to him. I just wanted to win so bad.” – Denny Hamlin

“That’s two years in a row we came here. Last time we didn’t have a good car; this time we had a good car. We were running sixth and I came in and overshot the pits a little. It wasn’t a big deal you know. We were making ground, but we had a great strategy. We had good fuel mileage and everyone on this Target Chevy did an amazing job today.” – Juan Pablo Montoya, finished second

“It was a pretty good race today. The PPG Dodge was good at the start of the race, and then we got realy loose in the middle portion. We tried to get some track position with pit strategy and it worked out in our favor. We were able to hold on and get our first top-five finish. It was a lot of fun going out there and racing today. The closer you get up to the front, the more fun it is.” – Sam Hornish Jr., finished fourth

“This Red Bull team continues to come on strong. I’m so proud of the effort everyone is putting into trying to make the Chase. The car really came to life before the second to last run after the air pressure adjustment in the pits. We just needed a bit of track position at the end, but the car was great.” – Brian Vickers, finished sixth

“We had a nice solid run today, coming out with a top 10. Nonetheless, I am still disappointed because I just felt like we had a car to win the race with 40 (laps) to go. We had done so well on all the restarts leading up to the end, picking up spots left and right. To tell you the truth, I’m beating myself up pretty bad right now because we had our worst restart when we needed a good one the most.” – Kurt Busch, finished ninth

“We made the best of a bad situation that I put us in on Saturday morning. We never give up. Darian (Grubb, crew chief) never gets wound up, and it keeps me from getting wound up. He just helps you through it. It’s easy to get down, but he is just calm and keeps you pumped up. You realize you’ve got a long day but that you’ll get it better as the day goes.” – Tony Stewart, finished 10th

“We dealt with a lot today. I have to thank my guys for working so hard and troubleshooting some different things. We finally found the problem there at the end. We were three laps down and able to get some cautions there at the end. For a while there I thought we would get a top 10, but I pounded the wall and tore up the right side of the car. Just a lot of fight in this race team. I’m very proud of them.” – Jimmie Johnson, finished 13th

“We got a little bit off target with the setup there in the middle, but we were able to keep good reasonable track position and set ourselves up for a good reasonable finish. It was a good learning experience for us as we don’t normally get to run so competitive to race with those guys (Carl Edwards and Kyle Busch).” – Scott Speed, Raybestos Rookie of the Race, finished 23rd

See also
Sprint Cup Rookie Report: Scott Speed Finds His Lucky Charms in the Pocono Mountains

“If he (Denny Hamlin) would have checked up just a little, I could have got the car straight and we would have been alright. But he just kept pushing. I feel bad for Marcos [Ambrose]. We both had good cars and would have easily left there with a a top-10 finish. Who know, maybe one of us would have won. It’s just a shame.” – David Reutimann, finished 29th

“I just hate it for our Penske Dodge team. We had a great car. Roy (McCauley, crew chief), all the guys on this team did a tremendous job preparing this car. We were fast all day. I could pass people and our car would really motor down the straightaways. We were caught up in someone else’s mess. I am looking forward to next weekend’s race in Watkins Glen.” – David Stremme, finished 32nd

“I didn’t see what happened. I was just in the wrong place at the wrong time. My spotter said that the No. 11 car (Denny Hamlin) just drove into the back of David [Reutimann]’s car on the exit. We just didn’t have anywhere to go. It’s disappointing to have our day end like that. We’ll just move on and get ready for Watkins Glen.” – Marcos Ambrose, finished 34th

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