Hi Everyone –
The CARFAX 400 was a bad day for the NAPA team. Our car handled really bad. We were really lucky that we didn’t spin out. On the last lap, I was able to pass five people which was kind of fun. We were at Michigan about a month ago and our car handled and ran about the same way. We are disappointed in our car and our performance on Sunday because we should have been a lot better than that. It’s hard to have a day like that. I love to race. I race to win. I race to pass people. I feel like there wasn’t a whole lot of that on Sunday.
The NAPA team needs to concentrate on points to make sure we can get as many as we can for Martin to start the 2010 season with. We beat most of the people behind us and around us in points so that was one positive about Sunday.
It was also a really hot day. I have been training really hard to make sure that when it is a hot day, I am ready to race all the way to the checkered flag. I felt really good physically when I climbed out of my car. Thanks Gio!
As for the other teams, I am really proud of David Reutimann and his No. 00 team. They were able to take their car and get a top-10 finish out of it. He and crew chief Rodney Childers did a good job getting it tuned up. The NAPA team was not able to accomplish that. We were about 30th in every practice. We qualified 30th and that’s pretty much where we ran. We finished 27th. That’s not acceptable. We just need to work really hard on our cars. We need to figure out what Reutimann’s team does that makes them go faster than us. Even Marcos Ambrose and his JTG-Daugherty team struggled at Michigan.
I want to say congratulations to Toyota driver Brian Vickers who won the race. He was one of the drivers favored to win and the “experts” said he could. It was good to see him come through and be fast. His first NASCAR Sprint Cup win was controversial so it’s nice to see him get one like that. He earned it.
Before I go, I want to talk about how fun our hospitality event was with the NAPA people from the U.S. and Canada. We are really proud to represent them. As usual, the NAPA folks were there in full support. I really wished I could have run better for them. We’ll just go to Bristol and try to do it all over again – but only A LOT better.
Bye for Now,