Q & A WITH RYAN NEWMAN ON HIS WIN AT PHOENIX
Q: As the race came down to a couple of final laps what were you thinking?
RYAN NEWMAN: I don't know if I have enough words. But the last restart, didn't really know what to expect. The inside, from what I had seen, hadn't been the ideal lane all day. I'm not sure if Jeff didn't get a great restart. I didn't feel I did, but it was just the right place at the right time.
Two tires paid off, clean air, and track picked up so much grip as we went there, and it was just right time, right place. And gotta thank Tornados and Chevrolet and the U.S. Army and Haas Automation and Coca Cola and Kraft and Gillette and all the people that have stood by us.
It was a long time coming for me personally, 77 races, but to see Tony Stewart win so many races last year and be so close but not get that victory, this is really awesome for us and our team.
Q. I will verify that Jeff Gordon said on Pit Road he spun the tires on the restart and he was kicking himself afterwards. Maybe that explains what happened at the end. But could you talk about that and the restart?
RYAN NEWMAN: I did the best I could. I knew from what my car had done every restart is a push down on 1 and 2. I got a good start and hooked the apron just right. Got a good run to the green, which is so difficult here.
I was talking to, of all people, Kyle Busch about it before the race. I mean, this is one of the longest straightaways we have before the green flag from Turn 4. Most tracks are D shaped and you can kind of see, but here it's really hard to gauge, at least when you're mid pack, what to expect on a restart.
So I had one opportunity earlier in the race when I was on two tires and it didn't pan out at all. And to go back later in the race and be on two tires with more laps then left still be able to pull it off was amazing.
Q. Can you talk about the decision to go for four; for two and how much you and Tony discussed it and who made the final call?
RYAN NEWMAN: Gibson wanted to put four on it. I said, put two on me. I didn't want to get jumped by a bunch of guys that did two. As it turned out, I don't know where the first guy was that finished on four tires. I don't know if he was even in the top five. He made the ultimate call.