It was not the night the Ford Racing drivers had in mind when the Federated Auto Parts 400 from Richmond International Raceway started. Sure Matt Kenseth (5th) and Greg Biffle (9th) finished in the top ten and solidified their Chase positions. But on the flip side Marcos Ambrose (15th) and Carl Edwards (17th) couldn’t do enough to qualify for the Chase themselves. Disappointment will be their feeling for now, but there are still ten races left in the season to gain wins and experience. Below are post-race quotes from those drivers.
MATT KENSETH, No. 17 Best Buy Ford Fusion – (Finished 5th/Seeded 8th in 2012 Chase): “I think the team is good in shape, we have been having great, great days on pit road, pretty good adjustments, made something out of, I don’t want to say nothing but we didn’t have a great car and Jimmie and them guys did a great job on pit road, strategy and adjustments and got us a top 5. So we’ve had a couple decent weeks. I can’t wait to go to Chicago and race there. We definitely know we need to win some races to have a shot at this thing so hopefully we can have a shot next week.”
GREG BIFFLE, No. 16 3M Ford Fusion – (Finished 9th/Seeded 5th in 2012 Chase with 2006 points): WHAT DID YOU LEARN TONIGHT THAT WILL MAKE YOU STRONGER IN THE CHASE? “We actually ran really good here tonight. We haven’t been that great in the past. To finish ninth and we really stayed out way too long on that one run trying to catch a caution so we were just experimenting and gambling. We would have been in the top five. We are excited about that. We learned a bit I think and it should help us at Loudon.”
CARL EDWARDS, No. 99 Kellogg’s Ford Fusion – (Finished 17th/DNQ for 2012 Chase): OBVIOUSLY DISAPPOINTMENT FOR YOU TONIGHT. “Yeah, this isn’t about one race. It is 26 races and we just let too many points get away for a bunch of different reasons. There was a lot of luck involved and everyone tried really hard. This is the fastest we have been the last six weeks all year and I am proud of everyone for rallying around Chad (Norris) and Bob (Osborne) included for making the best effort we could. We will just go try to build the best team we can for next year and try to make sure a Ford wins this championship.”
WHAT DOES THIS DO FOR YOU FOR THE LAST 10 RACES? “It makes it pretty simple for the last 10. We just go race as hard as we can. That has been kind of fun lately to do that but man, I don’t know, it is going to be wild to not be in the championship hunt. It won’t be as much fun at all.”
WHAT DOES YOUR ROLE FOR MATT AND GREG BECOME IN THE CHASE? “Just to be the best teammate I can be and to help them develop any setups they can and help them during practice. There isn’t much I can do on the race track once the race starts, but before the race starts I can help.”
MARCOS AMBROSE, No. 9 MAC Tools Ford Fusion – (Finished 15th/DNQ for 2012 Chase): YOU NEEDED A WIN, AND IT WASN’T MEANT TO BE TONIGHT. WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS? “I just tried my hardest tonight and it wasn’t our night. We had a bad car early on and went two laps down and had to fight our way back to the top-15. I will take that. Obviously we wanted the win, but it wasn’t meant to be tonight.”
FORD FINISHING RESULTS
5th Matt Kenseth
9th Greg Biffle
15th Marcos Ambrose
17th Carl Edwards
26th Aric Almirola
29th Casey Mears
31st David Gilliland
32nd David Ragan
35th Ken Schrader
41st Michael McDowell
42nd Josh Wise
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