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November 18, 2018

Kyle Busch

Kevin Harvick

Martin Truex, Jr.

Homestead, Florida

THE MODERATOR: We will start our post‑race press conference following the Ford EcoBoost 400 with the driver of the No.18 M&M's Toyota, and that is Kyle Busch. Kyle, I know you're disappointed, but outstanding season, record‑breaking season, 50 wins. Maybe talk about your night tonight, as disappointing as it is, but the bright side is as strong as you were this year.
KYLE BUSCH: Sure. Yeah, I don't know where we missed it, just I thought we were way closer than that yesterday, and felt pretty decent about things, plus Happy Hour and the changes we were going to take overnight to get into the race, and today we weren't even close. Just no grip all night long, just sideways and no front grip, along that, to go with it. Just on the long runs just couldn't enter the corner and we were getting smoked entering the corners and not being able to turn the steering wheel. Overall just a frustrating night. Adam called a great race, got us in position there when we long ran and caught that caution luckily, and everything came to fruition, just when you're half a second off, you're not going to hold anybody back.
THE MODERATOR: We're also joined by the driver of the No.4 Jimmy John's Ford, and that's Kevin Harvick. You led a number of laps tonight. Just take us through your race, please.
KEVIN HARVICK: Yeah, we had a daytime race car. As soon as it got dark we never could get our car tightened up there at the end, and then they made a great call to put us in position to win the race, and then the caution came out when the 2 car spun the 19 out and came off pit road fourth, and just our strong point was not the restarts tonight, and wound up on the wrong side of it.

Q. It seems like every year this race comes down to that late‑race caution, so for Kevin, as you're leading what appears is going to be the championship battle there with about 25 to go and knowing that Kyle has to pit again, in the back of your mind are you just thinking, wondering what's going to happen, what's going to change this?
KEVIN HARVICK: You know, in the end, not really. I was just driving away, and wound up with a restart there and didn't wind up getting off‑‑ going at the beginning. I don't really think about stuff like that. You just try to hit one lap at a time.
THE MODERATOR: We're now joined by Martin Truex Jr., driver of the No.78 for Furniture Row Racing. Last race for Furniture Row, obviously. Can you talk about the emotions of that and your race tonight, please?
MARTIN TRUEX JR.: Oh, shoot, I don't know. It's a tough night. You know, it's a tough way to lose. You know, kind of reversed the tale from last year. Last year we did the same thing they did tonight. That's the way it goes.
Just didn't play out the way we needed it to. We were terrible for 10, 15 laps on new tires and was able to get a good restart there at the end luckily and get out front, just I had nothing for him at the end. I needed 15, 20 more laps, and that's just the way it goes. I'm not sure what else to say.
Really proud of everybody on our team, you know, for fighting hard this year to get to where we were, and without that last caution it was in the bag maybe, I think. We'll see. But hurts a little and going to miss all the guys, and had a hell of a five years with this team. So just proud of them, and we're going to celebrate no matter what tonight.

Q. Kyle, when that last caution came out, did you think you had enough‑‑ you had to have that one to be in the top four. Did you think you could hold on at that point? You said your car was half a second slow, and it wouldn't have mattered?
KYLE BUSCH: Yeah, I was optimistic about it, but didn't think it would be that short lived. I figured I could at least maybe lead three or four laps, but Martin got a good restart. Every time I went to the gas it just spun the tires so I had to keep coming back out of it and he's going forward on me. Just didn't have the best of restarts for one, but then for two, once it got down there to the corner it just didn't turn anyways, and the 22 went by, the 4 went by, everybody went by. Y'all saw that. Just slow.

Q. Kevin, you guys didn't seem to be that happy with what you had yesterday after practice. What all went into it? Did you feel you had made when you got in the car and started to race, did you feel there had been a lot of big changes made?
KEVIN HARVICK: Yeah, we didn't make a lot of big changes, we made a lot of small changes, and the car was definitely better. But like I say, when it got dark, we just lost the rear grip and couldn't get off the corner and was having trouble turning in the corner. Just the balance was really good until it was dark outside, and we just never could get the rear grip back to where we needed to, and I couldn't take off.
But like I say, they put us in a position to win if the caution didn't come out, and we had a shot there with‑‑ I don't even know, what was there, 18 laps to go when the caution came out. It's just the way it all shook out, the 22 could take off really good.

Q. Martin, I know second is bittersweet, but when you look back on this five years with Furniture Row, what will you look back on most fondly?
MARTIN TRUEX JR.: All of it, really. You know, to go from a two‑race winner to a 19‑race winner, a championship, fourth in points, a second in points, it's just been amazing. Everything about it has been great. Everything about it has been the best thing I've ever been a part of. You know, I feel good about my future and going to a great place, and I know we'll have more success. But it's going to be different. You know, it's going to be a different team, a different cast of characters, and these guys were a special group, and I'm very thankful to get to work with all of them.
A few are coming with us, but the ones that aren't I wish them the best, and we'll be friends forever. It's just been a good ride. It's been a good run, and I hate to see it come to an end, but everything ends somewhere and things change.

Q. Kyle, talk about the pit stall situation. Do you think it threw your crew off their game a bit? You had a couple bad stops over the course of the race. Do you think it helped you or hurt you in the long run?
KYLE BUSCH: I don't know. I don't know how much adjustments we were doing and happening and things like that. We were so bad tonight on the racetrack and on pit road that nothing was kind of going our way. So it was just not all there the way that we needed it to, and sometimes it all falls into place and falls your way, and other times you've got to be able to go out there and go earn it, and we didn't have either tonight.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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