Sunday, Jun 04

Ford Performance - Dover Cup Qualifying Canceled Due to Rain

nclement weather made an appearance in-between Saturday’s practice and qualifying sessions. While practice ran as planned, qualifying was canceled. Brad Keselowski, driver of the No. 6 Wyndham Rewards Ford Mustang, topped the charts in practice. He will share the second row with Ryan Blaney, driver of the No. 12 Wabash Ford Mustang, for Sunday’s race.

BRAD KESELOWSKI, No. 6 Wyndham Rewards Ford Mustang (Starting 4th) – HOW ARE YOU FEELING AFTER RECORDING THE FASTEST LAP IN PRACTICE? “We ran a really fast lap in practice in our Wyndham Ford Mustang. That’s always a good thing. Hopefully that translates to the race. We had good speed in the car, and I was driving it really hard. I like the challenge of coming here to Dover.”


HOW DOES THE WEATHER AFFECT STRATEGY MOVING FORWARD? “Well, you come to Dover knowing it’s probably going to rain. So, there’s that challenge. Then there’s just the concrete track. It’s just really, really rough. It’s really demanding on both the car and driver, and you need to attack it before it attacks you.”


CHASE BRISCOE, No. 14 Mahindra Tractors Ford Mustang (Starting 6th) – WHAT ARE YOUR FEELINGS AFTER PRACTICE? “We were just extremely tight during practice. We couldn’t seem to free it up. Sounds like it was a pretty common thing, at least amongst our teammates. Hopefully we can figure something out. We kind of got a save there with the rain. Qualifying getting canceled gives us a good starting spot. Hopefully we can get our car a little better. It’s not too far off speed-wise for how it drives. So hopefully, we can get a little better and be up there in contention tomorrow.”


WHAT ARE YOUR EXPECTATIONS GOING INTO THE RACE AND DOES THE FORECAST AFFECT GAMEPLANNING? “I don’t know if it really changes the game plan, unless we start the race Sunday and the rain’s coming. I definitely think it’s going to be hard to pass. It seems like all of us are close from a speed standpoint, then you throw in the fact that this place has always been historically hard to pass at. There aren’t a lot of lanes. The bottom line is typically so fast that it’s hard to even make a pass. With us starting up-front, hopefully we can keep that track position all day long. That’ll be a huge saving grace for us if we can do that, so that’s what we’re going to try to do.”


AUSTIN CINDRIC, No. 2 Menards/Great Stuff Ford Mustang (Starting 20th) – HOW MUCH OF A ROLE WILL THE WEATHER HAVE THIS WEEKEND? “The weather definitely played a role in not letting us get a good selection or qualifying spot today, unfortunately only getting to do practice. But, our Menards / Great Stuff Mustang was great stuff. We have to be able to do it in the race and make the right adjustments. A bit of a bummer because I think we could have qualified better than where we’ll start.”


WHAT DO YOU EXPECT IN TOMORROW’S RACE? “Whether it’s tomorrow or Monday, this place always builds rubber. It’ll be important to watch the ARCA Menards race, as well as the Xfinity race to really understand where the track is going to go. An early start for the race… other than that, same old Dover.”


WHAT’S YOUR GOAL, AND THE TEAM’S GOAL, AT DOVER? “We need to reset – for our group. I mean, we’ve had everything thrown at us in the month of April, so we’ve lost a lot of points. We had speed at times…not had speed at times… so I think Dover is a place for us to reset.”


TODD GILLILAND, No. 38 Speedy Cash Ford Mustang (Starting 35th) – ANY TAKEAWAYS FROM PRACTICE? “The weather is definitely a tough component of this all, but I don’t know, it’s not laying down as much rubber – or literally any rubber at all. The tires were wearing out pretty bad, but that’s just a green racetrack at Dover. For me, I just have so much to work on here. I don’t understand this track fully for what I need, but we have a long way ahead of us tomorrow or Monday. That’s the plan: Continuing to learn every single lap.”

Earlier in the day, Ryan Blaney and Chris Buescher stopped by the media center to discuss this weekend’s Dover race.

RYAN BLANEY, No. 12 Wabash Ford Mustang (Starting 3rd) – SOME DRIVERS SAY THEIR EYES FLUTTER WHEN THEY HIT THE BUMPS HERE. DO YOU AGREE? “Yeah, I mean it’s rough. It’s weird because it’s not a super rough racetrack. It’s just the landing, getting into the corners is pretty big and then the tire will sometimes get like a basketball effect. Not so much with this car, but with the other car a little bit more. Things just happen so fast, so it takes you a few laps to get back into the rhythm until your body and eyes get used to the speeds here. It’s one of those places – Bristol on steroids. But, it’s a fun place. It’s neat the way it changes. The racing here last year wasn’t great. I wish we would have done the lower downforce deal here, but we’ll see.”


DOVER HAS STATISTICALLY NOT BEEN YOUR BEST TRACK. HOW HARD IS IT FOR YOU? “It definitely hasn’t been a very great track for us. I feel like we’ve struggled a little bit as a whole company here the last handful of years. It was a big struggle for us last year. None of us were very good last year. Coming in with a little bit of a different mindset, and hopefully it changes up our results. But, we’ll see. It’s just something about this place that what we’ve been doing hasn’t really been working. I think the Hendrick cars do it really well, the Gibbs cars have been really good here for awhile – and that’s kind of with the old car and with this one, honestly. It’s kind of just carried over, and it’s been the same for us. So, we’ve come with a little bit of a different approach, and hopefully we can learn something from it.”


CHRIS BUESCHER, No. 17 Fastenal Ford Mustang (Starting 5th) – WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS ON DOVER? “I love concrete tracks, apparently. It is a really fun racetrack and I’ve enjoyed it from really the first time I’d been here. I hope the sun comes out and it slickens up a little bit and widens out to give us a little bit more racing grooves – some more options there. If that’ll happen, then I think it creates some pretty good racing as well. I love coming out here. Fun racetrack – got our first pole here last year. I think this was one of the big turning points for our season last year. That gives me a lot of hope coming in. That was at this place and hopefully we can duplicate it and run a little better in the race – try to get that win now. Then we can really call it our turning point, again, for this year.”

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