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October 16, 2016
Kansas City, Kansas
THE MODERATOR: We are now joined by our third‑place finisher, Joey Logano, driver of the No.22 Shell‑Pennzoil Ford.
Joey, congratulations on a great run out there. You're sitting in eighth place heading into the final cutoff race in this current round.
Talk a little bit about your race and your thoughts heading into Talladega.
JOEY LOGANO: Yeah, we came out swinging. It's what we had to do. We did everything we were supposed to do today. Our team executed perfectly. So I'm proud of our pit stops, our adjustments, our restarts. Just needed a little bit more speed. That was probably the biggest thing. We were a little bit off on the short run.
You know, after 15 laps or so, we were as good as anybody, but we weren't better than them, so we couldn't make up what we were losing on the restarts. We made up a lot of points, just not enough. It is not comfortable, Austin and I are tied for next week, so that will be fun.
So overall I'm proud of the effort and the job we did today. You know, we wanted to win, but we did everything we were supposed to do.
THE MODERATOR: We'll open it up for questions for Joey.
Q. Eighth is a pretty interesting position to be in going into Talladega. How do you balance going for the win or racing for points?
JOEY LOGANO: I race to win. That's the way I race. I don't know a different way to race. That's probably the route I'm going to go. I'm sure we'll talk about it this week. But I'm a racer.
Q. You made up some points today, which was good. But has third never felt so disappointing? Good finish, but eighth, barely above the cutoff.
JOEY LOGANO: The big thing that swung everything around is Kevin winning. We would have been in pretty good shape if he had finished second today.
But it's not a surprise. Usually when it comes to these situations, they usually find a little bit more speed somewhere in their racecars. I don't know how, but when they're in must‑win situations, they seem to find a little bit more speed, which is always interesting to me that they have a little bit left in the tank.
For us, it's not disappointing because we still should be proud of the efforts that we had today. But, you know, it would have been a lot different if he finished second. And it may have happened, too. Kyle and Carl were racing the crap out of each other in front of me. Probably held them up enough.
I thought Carl was the faster car. Probably could have gone down there and beat the 4 at the end of the race. But they were racing each other pretty hard, which set 'em back a little bit.
THE MODERATOR: Joey, thanks for coming in, good luck next week.
JOEY LOGANO: Thank you.
THE MODERATOR: We are now joined by our sixth‑place finisher, Austin Dillon, driver of the No.3 Dow Coating Materials Chevrolet for Richard Childress Racing, and also Carl Edwards, our runner‑up finisher, driver of the No.19 XFINITY Toyota. Gentlemen, congratulations on a great race.
Austin, you're one place back behind the top eight heading into Talladega next week. Share your thoughts heading into next weekend.
AUSTIN DILLON: It was a solid race for our team. The Chevrolet started out okay. We made some adjustments to make it better. We tried something there with two tires. Just didn't have the speed there. I got tight, started getting really free. Luckily the caution came out. We were able to get four. Had a really solid restart at the end and gained a few spots.
Felt like we were running down most of the guys in front of us. I got to Kyle at the end, the last lap, but needed one more spot to be ahead of Joey. I think we're tied, but he gets the tiebreaker.
It's a good spot for us going into Talladega. We have nothing to lose. Proud of our team giving ourselves this chance. I'm very optimistic, look forward to racing hard at Talladega.
THE MODERATOR: This is Carl's 13th top‑10 finish in 19 races at Kansas Speedway. Carl, talk about what it means to have such a strong showing in front of your hometown crowd.
CARL EDWARDS: That's the good part. We ran well. That was really fun, getting to race up front. It is really tough for me to finish second here. It's happened twice. Both of them were pretty painful.
The bright side is that, yes, we raced up front. Got a lot of support from a lot of people here. Hopefully they enjoyed that part of it.
That last restart, Kevin and Jimmie just lined up at the bottom and they just got far enough ahead, I couldn't hang on the outside. Then I ended up having to race Kyle really hard there for a few laps. It let Kevin get out ahead.
But, man, we'll just move forward. Day or two will pass, maybe the sting will wear off and I'll be more excited about the points situation going into Talladega, because that's the bright side. We've got two decent races under our belts to go to Talladega with.
THE MODERATOR: We'll open it up for questions.
Q. Carl, you had some pretty good back‑and‑forth there with Kyle towards the end of the race. You both want to win obviously, but where is the thought process there where the consequences are so bad if a mistake happens?
CARL EDWARDS: I honestly wasn't thinking about any consequence. I knew if I could clear Kyle quickly, I could maybe catch Kevin. That's where I was at. My car was faster than Kyle's. He was good there for a lap or two, then I felt like I was quite a bit faster. I just needed to get by him.
But he was doing his job. He was racing as hard as he could. We didn't wreck each other. That's racing. I don't think there's anything wrong with it.
AUSTIN DILLON: Wish he could have got by him faster. Wish Kyle would have let him go (laughter).
Q. Carl, do you think you did have the car to catch Kevin if you didn't get stuck in that battle with Kyle?
CARL EDWARDS: We did. I felt like we did. I felt like we had the fastest car at the end. That's what's frustrating, you should win with the fastest car, especially when you start on the front row.
I take responsibility for that. I could have done something different on that restart, possibly hung on, and I wouldn't have been in that position.
But, man, I raced as hard as I could all day. You know, we didn't make hardly any mistakes. So we can keep our heads up. Like Dave said after the race, that's the most speed we've had at a mile‑and‑a‑half in a long time. That bodes well for the rest of the year, Texas and Homestead. We really believe if we can get to Homestead, we can win this championship.
Q. Carl, in one of the radio prerace broadcasts, they were talking about the effects of the weather on the conditions because you have a 20‑degree spike from yesterday. In what ways did racing in 80‑degree weather with basically a clear sky affect how you approached this race?
CARL EDWARDS: I don't know if Austin will back me up on this, but I think the track was completely different. Felt like we left and went somewhere else.
I mean, drive down into turn three and just slide. You know, it was really slick. Actually a lot of fun. One point I caught Chase Elliott and Kevin, I think maybe even Jimmie was up there. I thought, Man, this is a blast. We're really racing. Cars are sliding around, spinning tires. That was really fun. I was glad that the weather came.
So thanks, Pat, for making that happen today.
Q. I hate to ask about the guy that won the race, but I'm going to ask about him anyway. What is it about that team, not just Kevin in particular, but the team itself, that they always seem to be able to pull one out of the hat when they need it the most?
AUSTIN DILLON: I think as drivers, we all need to get together and block winner's elimination race or just pull for something because he's tough to beat on those final races. I mean, there's no doubt about it, he steps up when the pressure's there. That team does a good job.
Joey said it I think best. They're able to reach in their back pocket and get speed when they want it. It's mind‑blowing. It's hard to see it. But Kevin's a good finisher. He's always been that way. Look back at his career, he can finish off races.
CARL EDWARDS: Yeah, they did a good job today. I don't think they had the fastest car and they made it happen. So congrats to them.
Q. Austin, I know it worked out okay, but when they did the two‑tire stop and put you in the lead, did you have a concern after what happened at Charlotte?
AUSTIN DILLON: I had no real concern. I was more concerned at Charlotte than here. I knew that two tires as far as firing off was going to be okay through the gears. Allmendinger and a couple of them did it, fired off and ran third there for a while.
Our cars, we never put two tires on in practice or anything. Made it through the first lap and I went into turn one in third and the right front just ploughed on exit. I actually almost got run over on the exit of two.
We didn't have the balance for that and our car didn't have enough speed for that. So it was worth a shot. If we could have maybe cleared Carl somehow and just ran up there for like two laps until, you know, everything got settled, we probably would have net gained.
We ended up finishing about where we were going to finish anyways, because we got four tires on the next one. It made us make the decision to come get four, drag people down. We ran about to where we were going to finish.
Q. Since Dover, you guys have had something, more speed. Is it handling, horsepower?
AUSTIN DILLON: I think it's a little bit of everything. We kind of got lost in the middle of the year. Just got back everything kind of more consistent. We gained some speed at RCR. We're working hard as a group. That's what it is. It's a little bit of everything put together will make your cars faster. It's not just one thing.
Everybody wants it. That's another big part of it. We got a lot of focus on that 3 car right now, and that's big.
CARL EDWARDS: Plus the beard helps.
AUSTIN DILLON: The playoff beard (smiling).
Q. Carl, the emotion you feel of coming so close here again.
CARL EDWARDS: I'd rather not talk about that (smiling).
It's tough. There's so many people that come to this racetrack that support me and have supported me. Not just when I'm racing here, but Capitol Speedway, Old Summit, Callaway Raceway, Godfrey, all these places I raced growing up. It's a really special place for me.
As much fun as I had racing up front, yeah, it stings. There are negative emotions tied to not winning here with that fast of a car. But that's the way it goes.
Q. Carl, not to pile on...
CARL EDWARDS: But you're going to (smiling).
Q. When you had the lead, have you ever had a race where you thought you had won and didn't?
CARL EDWARDS: Yeah, this one today, I was pretty sure we were in control of the race. I felt really good about it. Then also that race here in I think it was 2008 with Jimmie. I felt like we were really in control of that one. We let that one go, too.
You know, these I remember more just because they are so special. Fortunately we get to race here twice now every year so I cannot wait to come back again. I wish we could line the cars back up again and go. But I'll wait.
Just like anything, you learn from your wins, but you probably learn more from your defeats. We'll go back and look at that restart, learn what I can do, and maybe at Homestead I can use this for something positive.
THE MODERATOR: Gentlemen, thank you for your time. Good luck next week.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports