Will Fords Roll to Victory in the Pepsi Max 400?

MATT KENSETH – No. 17 Crown Royal Black Ford Fusion – DO YOU THINK
THERE IS SOME SORT OF ETIQUETTE BETWEEN CHASERS AND NON-CHASERS,
LOOKING BACK ON LAST WEEK’S BUSCH-REUTIMANN ISSUE?  “I didn’t really
see what went down last week, so I can’t comment on that, but, in my
opinion, I think you race the same all year.  I think you should race
everybody the same whether they’re in the chase or not in the chase.
I think you try to show people respect all year because everybody has
the same right to be out there, whether they’re first in points or
last in points.”  THAT BEING SAID, ARE THERE CERTAIN PEOPLE ON THE
TRACK THAT YOU’RE MORE AWARE OF AND TRY TO STAY AWAY FROM BECAUSE YOU
FEEL SOMETHING COULD HAPPEN?  “No.  I race the same all year,
honestly, no matter where you are in the points.  If it came down to
the last week or something like that and you’re the point leader by a
bunch, you’re probably gonna be a little bit more careful, but, other
than that, as competitive as it is I think you race as hard as you can
all year.  Everybody has the same right to be out there.  Everybody is
out there racing for wins and have their own particular
responsibilities.”  AS A CHASER DO YOU WORRY ABOUT SOMETIMES RUBBING
FENDERS WITH A NON-CHASER, KNOWING THEY COULD POSSIBLY RUIN YOUR
CHAMPIONSHIP HOPES?  “I don’t want to ruin any race.  No matter where
you are in the points they’re all big races.  I think you go out there
and you’re gonna race whatever your style is all the time.  I don’t
think that really changes.  You still have to race hard all the time
because it’s so competitive that you can’t just go out and think about
not knocking a fender off.  You go out there and think about trying to
get to the front.”  DO YOU CONSIDER THIS THE KIND OF TRACK THAT CAN
HELP YOU GET BACK UP IN THE POINTS?  “Where we are, we’ve got to gain
some significant points on the leader every week to get back in it and
have a realistic shot.  I think our performance has been picking up a
little bit lately, we just have to get a whole race put together.
We’ve been struggling with that a little bit.  There were times last
week where I thought we were very competitive but we didn’t finish it
off.  This has been a pretty good track for us in the past, so,
hopefully we can be competitive from the time we get on the track this
morning all the way through Sunday when we’re done and get a good
finish.  So that’s really what I’m more focused on is just trying to
get back up with the leaders and be competitive so we can get in a
really good position to win some races.”
FORD RACING NOTES AND QUOTES    Pepsi MAX 400, Page 2
October 8, 2010 Auto Club Speedway

MATT KENSETH CONTINUED — IS THERE A SPECIFIC POINT IN THE RACE WHERE
YOU FEEL YOU NEED TO IMPROVE?  “Our adjustments have just not been
good enough to keep up with the track for whatever reason.  Last week,
the worst we ran the whole race was our last run and you can’t do that
because you’re not gonna get the finishes.  Lately, there have been a
lot of long, green-flag runs at the end and you’ve got to have your
car handling right and do the right things at the end of the race.  On
the last pit stop we came out ahead of Jimmie Johnson and he finished
second and we finished seventh without a caution, so we just haven’t
been doing the right things to keep up on whatever it is – track
conditions or adjustments.  That’s probably my fault for not knowing
what I need for adjustments.  I’m trying to give them the best
feedback I can and hope that we do the right things on the car in the
pits to get it running better.”  WHAT DOES IT TAKE TO DO WELL AT
CHARLOTTE?  “Track position has been really important there since the
introduction of this car with the spoiler and that pavement.  The
pavement has a lot of grip and even though the track gets pretty wide,
it’s a real fast track and kind of hard to pass so track position is
real important.  You’ve got to be in position the last couple of
stops.”  WHAT’S THE BIGGEST DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE FALL AND SPRING
RACE THERE?  “I don’t think there’s much of a difference.”  WHAT IS IT
GOING TO TAKE FOR ANYBODY TO BEAT THE 48?  “You’ve got to prove you
can beat them.  I’ve said it for five years, they’re the best team out
there and somebody has to beat them and knock them down before you can
say they’re not the best team.  Everybody says, ‘Oh, they don’t have
momentum.  They’re not running as good.’  Well, as soon as somebody
shows they can beat them, I’ll believe it.”  WHAT TRACK ARE YOU
WORRIED ABOUT THE MOST OF THE TRACKS LEFT?  “Honestly, for me I worry
about all of them.  I’ve really just been focused on Fontana this
weekend and then trying to get back on track here and get a good
finish.”  IS THE FR9 ENGINE COMING ON AT THE RIGHT TIME?  “I think the
engine has been helping a little bit.  I think there’s still some room
for improvement and Doug knows that – everybody knows that – because
we’ve only been working on it for six months or a year, whereas we
worked on that old engine forever.  I think it’s certainly an
advantage and it’s better than what we had, plus they keep getting it
better.”  DO YOU THINK IT WILL RUN PARTICULARLY WELL HERE IN FONTANA?
“I hope so.  Fontana and Michigan are big horsepower race tracks, but
they’re also big handling race tracks as well.  It’s real similar to
Michigan, so if you perform well there, hopefully you’ll perform okay
here.”

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