Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Showdown Post-Race Transcript

AJ Allmendinger (No. 22 Pennzoil Dodge Charger R/T)
Finished 2nd
“I can’t believe the luck of this race team (smiles). A flat tire before we come to green, I mean, we’ve got to do something to change our luck up, that’s unbelievable. The car was so fast. I mean, once we pitted and got back into the lead there, I was pulling away from Dale (Earnhardt Jr.) and I just knew the car was fast. I’m not going to give up on these guys. They work too hard; they deserve to be in this race. I knew if I got to his bumper (Jamie McMurray) I was going to move him the heck out of the way because I wanted to be in this race.”

COMMENT ON THE LAST 20 LAPS. “Man, to get a flat tire coming to the green. I don’t know if we’ve got to sacrifice a goat or what I need to do or what I’ve done wrong to somebody to keep having the bad luck. These guys deserve to be in this race and I just wanted to get them there. I gave it everything I had for 20 laps.”

YOU FOLLOWED JAMIE MCMURRAY LAP AFTER LAP AND FINALLY GOT BY HIM. “The Pennzoil Dodge was so fast. I got a flat tire coming to the green. I’m not sure what we’re doing wrong. I mean, he just had to get off the bottom. I was just aero-tight behind him. I was so much quicker than him (but) I was just aero-tight. Jamie is good and he knows how to get around this place. He kept making sure that he got the good exit shots and finally he just got off the bottom a little bit and at that point I wasn’t going to lift. I didn’t care if we all wrecked, if I got into him or what. These guys on this Pennzoil Dodge, this Penske organization, they belong in this race and they deserve it more than I do. I was going to do everything I could to get ‘em in or I was going to die trying.”


HOW DID YOU MAKE YOUR WAY UP THROUGH THE FIELD AFTER THE FLAT TIRE EARLY? “A fast race car. I couldn’t believe we had a flat tire coming to the green. Guys did a good job to do left-sides and get me back out there before I got lapped. From there, the car was so fast I could see that I was pulling away from Dale when he was behind me and at that point I knew at least we had a shot at it. We needed to get to that 20 laps and do everything we could and after that I think I was one of the few cars that had four tires. The car was just fast. Twenty laps is a short amount of time to get there and I just gave everything I had. If I didn’t make it I didn’t want it to be for lack of trying. Everybody at this organization, especially on the 22 car, they’re used to winning, they’re used to being in this race and I wasn’t going to let ‘em down. I was going to do everything I could to get in there. I was going to wreck trying.”

WHEN YOU REALIZE YOU’VE GOT THE FLAT TIRE AND YOU HAVE TO PIT BEFORE THE RACE STARTS, HOW ARE YOU NOT READY TO SAY YOUR NIGHT IS OVER? “Ten races of bad luck, getting used to it. At that point it is what it is. You can’t do anything. I was shaking the car around just trying to warm the tires up and Todd Gordon (crew chief), he was on it because he saw it from the pit box and asked if I had a tire low as we were coming to one to go. And at that point I really started shaking the car around and I could feel that it was flat. Really the first five or six laps of the green flag run made me feel good ‘cause I could see that I was driving away from Dale. At that point at least I knew we had a fast car. Whether we had time to get there on a restart or not, I just knew we had time. We had a fast car and that’s all you can ask for at that point and then it was just getting aggressive. You know at the point I didn’t care if I wrecked. I mean I was going to do everything I could to get there. You know Jamie is one of the best, especially around this place. He knew I was quicker. I was way quicker and I knew once I cleared him it was game over. We were a little bit free on the first run so we tightened it up and I was just a little bit tight anyway so when I got behind him I was aero-tight. He was good. I could roll a ton of speed on him in to the corner but he could get the thing just pointed good enough off that I could never get to his bumper to get him up out of the way. And coming with two to go he got into one and he missed the bottom just a little bit and at that point that was my only shot. I got in the middle of the corner and just held it wide open. I didn’t care if I bounced off of him or we both wrecked. I figured we practiced last week wrecking together so I wasn’t scared to do it again.”

Credit - SRT Motorsports PR

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