MONSTER ENERGY NASCAR CUP SERIES
TOYOTA OWNERS 400
RICHMOND INTERNATIONAL RACEWAY
TEAM CHEVY DRIVER PRESS CONF. TRANSCRIPT
APRIL 28, 2017
KASEY KAHNE, NO. 5 AARP DRIVE TO END HUNGER CHEVROLET SS, met with members of the media at Richmond International Raceway and discussed the opening practice session, his outlook for qualifying, his thoughts on teammate Dale Earnhardt, Jr.’s retirement and many other topics. Full Transcript:
ON THE FIRST PRACTICE SESSION AND WHAT HE IS FEELING IN ADVANCE OF QUALIFYING:
“I feel pretty good. I thought we took off pretty good at the start of practice. It’s a neat track, especially during the daytime. I always think it’s kind of one of my favorite tracks, I think a lot of the guys really enjoy racing here. The car was really nice taking off and then we made a couple of other five laps runs and went to qualifying trim and missed it a little the first lap. So, then we were on old tires from that point on, so we didn’t end up great on the board, but I feel like we have a strong car and hopefully a car that can qualify towards the front this afternoon.”
REACTION TO DALE EARNHARDT, JR.’S RETIREMENT ANNOUNCEMENT AND HOW IS YOUR SUNBURN?
“First, Dale, yeah just an interesting week. I feel really good for him. He is obviously happy. He has put a lot into his racing career and done a lot for a lot of us drivers and a lot of the fans and kids. I’ve seen him do so much for Make-A-Wish and read the stories over the years. So, he has been a huge part of the sport and impacted it in so many ways and it is neat to see him announce his retirement and be happy about it. I know that him and Amy (Earnhardt, wife) have to have some great plans and ideas for their future and things that they are going to do. Yeah, I’m being him 100 percent. I think it’s great.
“My sunburn is okay. I just put lotion on a second ago when I put this suit back on. It’s very red and warm and starting to get a little crunchy, but it will be alright. I didn’t notice it. So, I did that ride in the morning and I don’t really know what I was thinking, but I did that and I was just sweaty all day and I was salty and what not from sweating a lot and never really thought about it until I took a shower. Then I was like ‘oh shoot’ this is what has hurt all day, but it was kind of cloudy so I had no clue. It was like light clouds, which I guess can burn you the worst sometimes.”
HOW DISAPPOINTING WAS LAST WEEKEND IN BRISTOL WITH THE TIRE ISSUE LATE IN THE GOING AFTER HAVING SUCH A STRONG RUN?
“Yeah, we worked our way up and had a great car there. I was really loose taking off. Back in the pack we had to keep freeing the car up and then once I got in the top two or three rows the car was way freer, turned a lot better and I was really happy with it after 15 laps or on the long run. Prior to getting up there we were passing cars and felt really good, was one of the better cars there at that point in time. I was really happy and then I felt a vibration and then four laps later I had to pit because it was getting worse really quick. I tried staying out for a second and it was not good on the right rear. We had to pit, went two laps down, which isn’t that bad to have a pit stop, four tires and only lose two laps at Bristol as quick as that. Maybe I was more than that I thought I was two, but maybe I was more, I don’t know. Anyways, yeah, that is where we ended. Rough finish, but we had a strong car and we have had some strong cars this year and look forward to having another strong car on Sunday.”
SOME OF YOUR BEST RESULTS LAST YEAR WERE HEAR AT THIS TRACK. DOES THAT GIVE YOU CONFIDENCE FOR SUNDAY OF IS EVERY YEAR KIND OF A DIFFERENT ANIMAL?
“Yeah, I think every year is a little different, but I know that these were two of my best races last year. I’ve enjoyed racing here and felt good in practice today, so I think all that builds and it counts as something. I feel like we could have a good result on Sunday. I think, I was looking at our car and our set-up’s and things are very similar to where we were last year. So, we will just kind of fine tune on that tomorrow and hopefully get things right. This should be a good show for us.”
DO YOU THINK MULTIPLE GROOVES WILL COME IN FROM THE TRACK LAYING DOWN RUBBER?
“Yeah, I think absolutely. I watched when we got out and were switching to qualifying trim, I watched Ricky Stenhouse, run like seven laps in a row and each lap he moved up like another foot, and another foot, and another foot and you could see the track turning blacker where he was going. It is going to move way up. He was getting quicker as he went or running the same speed, so it will be good. So, it will be just like, I think, you know last year we raced on Sunday and I feel like maybe two years before that we had a rain delay that went on a Sunday and both those races to me were two of the best races at Richmond over the last few years. I think it’s going to be a really good show on Sunday, myself.”