“This is unbelievable this season, I can’t believe it. Three in a row.” – Race winner Joey Logano to Dave Burns
“Per the rules we run second. I can live with that.” – Runner-up Dale Earnhardt Jr. to Marty Snider
“I never thought in a million years that I would be looking forward to Talladega to advance.” – Jeff Gordon on advancing to the Round of Eight
STAMFORD, Conn. — Oct. 25, 2015 — NBCSN presented an exhilarating afternoon of elimination racing from Talladega Superspeedway. Race day Sunday culminated with Joey Logano sweeping the entire Round of 12, securing his third straight Chase win. After a final lap collision, which caused race results to be delayed, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Ryan Newman, Denny Hamlin and Matt Kenseth were unofficially eliminated from the 2015 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup.
Inside the NBC broadcast booth, race announcer Rick Allen and analysts Jeff Burton and Steve Letarte called the action. Working the pits were NBCSN reporters Marty Snider, Kelli Stavast, Mike Massaro and Dave Burns.
|2||Dale Earnhardt Jr.||88|
ROUND OF 8 CHASE DRIVERS (Unofficial)
|Martin Truex Jr.|
The following are highlights from afternoon’s NASCAR Sprint Cup race coverage on NBCSN.
Letarte on the differences at Talladega: “When you come to Talladega, the schedule is very unique. It is almost a little laid back. Even though it is tense, you don’t practice a whole lot. It is not like a regular down force track. Mechanical problems can kill you.”
Burton on Kenseth’s over the radio disdain for Joey Logano: “Matt is already on edge. Anytime Logano does anything at all Matt is going to be upset about it. Without a doubt Logano turned in front of Matt and hit the brakes to get onto pit road. It was a late move. You add that onto last week’s race in Kansas, and that is why Matt is so frustrated.“
Massaro on Kenseth’s open frustration with Logano: “You could tell the frustration and the ill feelings lingered into this weekend.”
Letarte on the crowd at Talladega: “One thing that is so unique about this race track, because of it’s size and the amount of fans, when there is an issue on the race track you can hear the crowd over the cars.”
Burton on the importance of knowing your car: “Earnhardt Jr. is not afraid to make a move because he knows his car is fast enough to try and pull the move off. If you have a slow car, and you are aggressive the way Jr. is, you end up working your way to the back. In a fast car you can press the tempo, you can push, you can make things happen.”
Letarte on Earnhardt Jr.’s lead with 30 laps to go: “Dale Earnhardt Jr. and I sat down this weekend and talked about this race. We talked about it being at Talladega, a track he felt he could come and win at. He made it known he wanted the lead with 30 laps to go. He wanted to control this pack.”
The pre-race interview is available here.
Letarte on the first restart attempt: “The caution flagged waved before they reached the start/finish line, therefore the race was never put under green flag condition, so this was not their first attempt (at a green white checker).”
Logano’s radio response to the first “non-restart”: “They have to be kidding me. That is an attempt at a green-flag. The green flag is out that is an attempt.”
Burton on Harvick’s blown up engine: “Without this situation he may not get in to the Chase, but this (massive collision) may allow him to get in. He is riding around here barely making it around the race track, with an engine that won’t run.”
Burton on the need for a caution after the second restart collision: “If they would have stayed green, the cars would have come around to the start/finish line and there were three cars sitting on the track. They could not have stayed green.”
Letarte on finish line video analysis: “For the official finishing order of the race, NASCAR goes to video. They want to take it frame by frame to give everyone the opportunity for every point available.”
Race winner Logano to Burns: “This team is unbelievable. Three in a row, can you believe that? How does that even happen…This is unbelievable this season, I can’t believe it. Three in a row.”
Runner-up Earnhardt Jr. to Snider: “Per the rules we run second. I can live with that…We did everything we needed to do. We just fell a little short, by the width of the splitter. You know how I hate that splitter…We can sit here and pout about this day, but we didn’t do well enough if the first two races. If we had done better in the first two races of this round we would not have been worried about losing by a splitter.”
Denny Hamlin who was caught in the final collision to Massaro: “The No. 4 car could only run about 30 mph. I think he saw people coming and he knew he was probably going to be the last car on the lead lap so he caused a crash.”
Burton on Harvick’s inability to get up to speed: “(Drivers) believe he did that on purpose, trying to turn into car No. 6’s side and cause a caution.”
Gordon on advancing to the next round to Burns: “This season has been a crazy season for us. Since the Chase started the attitude of the team, the momentum and the execution have been on. The things that we weren’t doing earlier in the year we are doing them all right now at the right time. I never thought in a million years that I would be looking forward to Talladega to advance.”
– NBC SPORTS GROUP –