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Subway 400 press conference: Kenseth and Roush.


Matt Kenseth put paid to some of the detractors who claimed that he was unable to win races in NASCAR's senior class by taking victory after a 37-race dry spell in Sunday's Subway 400 at Rockingham.

The success elevated the reigning champion to second in points behind Daytona winner Dale Earnhardt Jr, and handed team owner Jack Roush his eleventh win in the last twelve Ford successes.


Q:
Matt, when did you realise that you were going to have to react [under pressure from Kasey Kahne] coming off turn four?

Matt Kenseth:
Before the middle of the corner you're already wide open anyway. I got a little loose up off of four. I knew he was a little bit lower, but I didn't really pay that much attention. I figured as long as I can get into three in front of him, there's no way he was gonna beat me off four down the straightaway. So I was surprised he had that big of a run. I was probably halfway from turn four to the finish line before I looked down and saw his nose was up by the door. I was like 'man, he's gaining momentum on me'.

So I probably did the wrong thing, I turned right. The line is a little bit of an angle, but I actually turned right to get away from his car so he couldn't pull the air off my door and fill my wheel wells there and slow me down, so I tried to get away from him as much as I could and just hold it wide open. I was surprised because I didn't expect that. I expected him to make a last-ditch effort, but I didn't expect it to be there. I didn't expect him to get that good of a run, so it was kind of a surprise and I was glad we made it back there.

Q:
Did you have a view of [team-mate] Mark [Martin]'s restart?

MK:
I didn't see any of it, so I can't really comment on it too much. I will say that all day we were getting really good restarts. Every time we got a restart when we were in the lead, I cleared the lap-down car every single time getting into turn one. By the end of the backstretch I had a ten or 15-car length lead and the lapped car was in between me and the second-place car every single time. So I don't think it was something different.

I know Mark pretty well and even if it's me, he isn't gonna do something that's gonna hurt his reputation. You know how he drives. I don't really think he did [block], but I didn't see it, so I don't really know. There was one restart where Robby Gordon was in between me and the second-place guy for 35 laps. They're doing what they can to
stay the first car a lap down and get that lucky dog thing, so I'm sure he was trying to stay in that position. But the short answer is, no, I didn't see it.

Q:
Did you have a sense of security today?

MK:
That's exactly what happened with not making adjustments. We were so good in the middle of the race that I didn't want to do something to the car that would be hard to reverse - like pulling a spring rubber or going too far on something and getting behind. We were so good in the middle of the race. There wasn't anybody that I felt like that could run with us the first 300 laps. I should have adjusted on it more. The car was giving me every sign that I needed to get better traction up off the corner and I just couldn't figure out how to do that without hurting the middle of the corner. I thought we were gonna be okay for a short run, but we weren't. We were too loose and I almost gave that race away because we didn't adjust on the car the way we should have. It would have been really hard for me to face me crew that had those perfect pit-stops and kept me up front all day if I would have lost that thing in the last hundred yards.

Q:
Is it a relief to win again?

MK:
Yeah, it feels great to come here and be able to win right out of the box and lead all those laps. That didn't look like us. Usually we don't lead all those laps. Even if we win, we usually sneak up kind of at the end and we had such a strong car, so it feels good to do that because, obviously, some people wrote or some people have said that we can't lead laps and win races, and we just finish seventh every week. So it was great to go dominate the race the way we did.



Related Pictures

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Matt Kenseth [Pic credit: Ford media site / Autostock]
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet, celebrates with a burnout after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 16, 2014 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Chris Trotman/Getty Images for NASCAR)
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Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Express Toyota, practices for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 14, 2014 in Homestead, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Todd Warshaw/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet, passes Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Express Toyota, to take the lead and win the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 16, 2014 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
Joey Logano, driver of the #22 Shell-Pennzoil Ford, pits during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 16, 2014 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Jerry Markland/Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet, and team owner Tony Stewart celebrate winning in Victory Lane after the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 16, 2014 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Todd Warshaw/Getty Images for NASCAR)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet, celebrates with his wife DeLana and son Keelan in victory lane after winning during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 16, 2014 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet, celebrates with the trophy in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 16, 2014 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
Marcos Ambrose, driver of the #9 Stanley Ford, poses with his team before his last race, the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 16, 2014 in Homestead, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Jerry Markland/Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet, leads Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Drive To End Hunger Chevrolet, during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 16, 2014 in Homestead, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 and the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 16, 2014 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet, celebrates in victory lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 16, 2014 in Homestead, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet, takes the chequered flag to win the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 and the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 16, 2014 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Chris Trotman/Getty Images for NASCAR)
Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Express Toyota, Ryan Newman, driver of the #31 Caterpillar Chevrolet, Miss Sprint Cup Kim Coon, Joey Logano, driver of the #22 Shell-Pennzoil Ford, and Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet, pose for a photo prior to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 16, 2014 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)
Matt Kenseth, driver of the #20 GameStop/Rock Candy Toyota, celebrates in victory lane after winning the NASCAR Nationwide Series Ford EcoBoost 300 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 15, 2014 in Homestead, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
Matt Kenseth, driver of the #20 GameStop/Rock Candy Toyota, celebrates in victory lane after winning the NASCAR Nationwide Series Ford EcoBoost 300 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 15, 2014 in Homestead, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
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