Race winner Kyle Busch to Marty Snider in Victory Lane: “That right there is what we’ve got to do. Score as many points as we possibly can. Score those wins. That’s going to get us to where we need to be.”
Jeff Burton on Kyle Busch’s pass for the lead: “Kyle Busch was not only impressive right there, he was smart.”
Steve Letarte on the new aero package: “The changes that NASCAR has made for this facility in Kentucky have been a perfect fit, and that makes me excited as we look forward to Michigan and Indianapolis.”
SPARTA, Ky. – July 11, 2015 – NBCSN presented its first ever NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race tonight with live coverage of the Quaker State 400 from Kentucky Speedway. Inside the broadcast booth, race announcer Rick Allen, 21-time Sprint Cup winning driver Jeff Burton and Daytona 500-winning crew chief Steve Letarte called the action. Patrolling pit road were NBCSN reporters Marty Snider, Kelli Stavast, Mike Massaro and Dave Burns.
The following are highlights from tonight’s NASCAR Sprint Cup race coverage on NBCSN.
Letarte on the strategy surrounding Brad Keselowski’s decision to pit with 101 laps to go: “[Crew chief] Paul Wolfe’s decision wasn’t only about tires. He put four tires on because he knew that he’d be back in the pack, but he is studying the fuel windows, anticipating caution flags and strategizing to be in position at the end of this race.”
With 70 laps to go, Burton comments on the new aero package: “So far, this has worked out great. The re-starts have been good, we’ve seen cars fight back to the front from all the way back. There has been a lot of passing. So far, I’m a fan.”
Letarte adds: “The aero changes that NASCAR has made for this facility in Kentucky have been a perfect fit, and that makes me excited as we look forward to Michigan, Indianapolis and other places where they’ve decided to tweak the aerodynamics. It seems like the simulations and ideas that NASCAR have employed are really applying well to the racing.”
Upon a replay of Keselowski’s pit crew struggling through a 17-second pit stop and having subsequent conversation with their crew chief, Letarte offers: “I’ve had those conversations. It’s a polite, ‘We’ve got this fixed, right?’”
Burton: “Is that a question or a statement?”
Letarte: “It’s more of a statement, but there’s a question mark.”
With 50 laps to go, Letarte talks fuel strategy: “All of these drivers were informed that, unless there is a caution, this is the run to the finish. Everyone at this point can make it on fuel. The intensity is really starting to ratchet up now. The give-and-take is gone. It’s take, take and take some more.”
Burton on the decision not to pit toward the end of the race when the rest of the field does: “As a driver, you’re looking in the mirror coming down the front straightaway. And when you see no one behind you, it’s a sickening feeling. You then know that you’re the last guy with old tires and everyone is going to be charging at you.”
With 28 laps to go, Burton comments on Kyle Busch’s impressive run: “Kyle Busch has changed his line, he has moved way up to the top of the race track. When he did that, he went to from being about the fourth fastest car, to the first or second fastest car. He has cut this lead to under a second. He’s gaining on [race leader] Joey Logano right now.”
Burton as Logano and Kyle Busch engaged in a heated duel for the lead: “There are 20 laps to go, but it feels like we’ve only got two laps left.”
Burton on Kyle Busch overtaking Logano for the lead: “Prior to the pass for the lead, Kyle Busch caught Logano on the back straightaway, but he knew his strength and waited until turn one to make his move, when he was in the position that he wanted to be in. Just because you catch a guy, that does not mean it’s the right time to pass him. Kyle Busch was not only impressive right there, he was smart.”
Race winner Kyle Busch with Snider in Victory Lane: “That was awesome. I cannot say enough about Adam Stevens and this whole M&M’s team, they did a phenomenal job for me in preparing a great race car… That right there is what we’ve got to do. Score as many points as we possibly can. Score those wins. That’s going to get us to where we need to be. We led the most laps and we won the race, so that’s all you can score.”
Team owner Joe Gibbs on his triumphant driver Kyle Busch: “I have so much respect for what he has done. It’s a great sports story. To be hurt that bad at Daytona, come back in four months and then win a road race, come back here and win again… I am so proud of him and the whole M&M’s team.”
@NASCARonNBC: @NASCARonNBC The official Twitter account of NASCAR coverage on NBC and NBCSN provides exclusive access to drivers, NBC Sports NASCAR experts and behind-the-scenes content, as well up-to-the-minute news and highlights, including video and articles from NBCSports.com.
For more information about NBC Sports Group shows and properties, including press releases, photos, talent and executive bios and headshots, please visit NBCSportsGroupPressBox.com.
– NBC SPORTS GROUP –