JEFF GORDON, INTERIM DRIVER, NO. 88 AXALTA CHEVROLET SS – FINISHED 11TH
ON HIS SLIP UP EARLY IN THE RACE AND THE RACE OVERALL:
“I went up top too early on that restart. I felt the pressure from Kyle (Busch) and those guys behind me they were a little bit better than me on that short run there. I was trying to make something happen and I moved up and it just didn’t work. I got too high and got loose and lost a bunch of positions. We fought back a little bit, but I don’t know after that I don’t know if it was track position or just the way the track went we just never quite had a handle on it.”
THOUGHTS ON THE TWO GROOVES OF RACING:
“It was interesting it made it pretty challenging on the restarts. It helped a little bit with lap traffic. You could at least go down there and hook the bottom for one lap, but if they truly want to have a bottom groove call me, I will tell them how to do it.”
JEFF GORDON, INTERIM DRIVER, NO. 88 AXALTA CHEVROLET SS – Qualified 11th
DO YOU KNOW WHAT’S GOING TO HAPPEN TOMORROW NIGHT?
“I mean I have an idea of what I think it’s going to do. All I can evaluate off of is practice. This is I think new for everybody. I can evaluate the other races and I think we are all very curious to watch this Xfinity race tonight. The Trucks they can only give you so much because they have a lot less power and a lot of drag. Our cars just with more power and less downforce it is a little bit of an unknown. I mean I feel like the bottom, from what I saw in practice, the bottom is going to be good for 15 laps for some less, for they seem to stay down there a little bit longer. Then I think the top is going to prevail still, but the nice thing is there are options. There are two grooves. I like it. I think it’s cool what they did here and I applaud them for being kind of bold enough to go try something like this. I’m also proud of them for talking to drivers and teams about this idea and I think that collaboration has come together something pretty nice.”
FIRST TIME IN THE TOP 12 SINCE BEING THE INTERIM DRIVER FOR DALE EARNHARDT, JR. CAN YOU TALK ABOUT WHAT THE DIFFERENCE WAS THIS WEEK?
“We have been working hard every week. Some of it has just been me making mistakes, some of it is we just haven’t had the car dialed in quite the way we needed to, but I thought today we got to make three qualifying runs. That is something we’ve not been able to do since I’ve been in the car. I felt like that helped us dial it in a little bit better. When we started qualifying the car was really good. I was a little disappointed we weren’t better than 11th there on that final round, but we are very proud to make the third round. It’s a big deal. Qualifying has not been the strong suit for me since I’ve been in this car or this team this year. So, that means a lot to these guys and I love this track. I love to challenge the car and the tires and myself and the team. So, I think that whole group effort made a big difference today.”
JEFF GORDON, INTERIM DRIVER, NO. 88 AXALTA CHEVROLET SS – 21ST IN STANDINGS
“I love coming to Bristol. It’s one of those tracks that brings out the fan in all of us. It’s the one track that I go in the night before and walk over to it when nobody is there. I just look at it and go, ‘man, this place is cool.’ I walked it earlier this year with (fellow NASCAR on FOX personality) Larry McReynolds never thinking I would be racing at this ‘colosseum’ again.”