What drivers said at Kansas Speedway

A look at what drivers said during and after Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series race at Kansas Speedway:

Denny Hamlin — Won: “It’s the new NASCAR – it’s what everyone cheers about when someone else does it. I was just trying to side-draft him there and miscalculated. It was great for us to get back into position to get close to him and get him loose through one and two. … I had such a fast car, just couldn’t get long enough runs for it to materialize. Finally, we had just enough time. This is a team win. These team guys, this pit crew, stepped up in a huge way this week. I’m proud of them. It is so important. It is a big win for Joe Gibbs Racing, for myself. Every win is very, very hard to get, so you have to take every one you can get. I knew the only way I was going to have an attempt to get near him was to get a huge run off of Turn 4, so I ran way up high in Turn 3, really kind of a Kyle Larson line, way up by the fence, and I just pulled it down and got a huge run, and that run down the front straightaway allowed me to pack air on him getting into the corner and get him up the racetrack so I could get beside him. We were both pedaling the throttle on the exit. I was sideways and he was sideways, and as he started to — I knew it was going to be close whether he was going to clear me, and I’m just trying to grind on his left side, trying to keep the side draft as tight as I could, and it’s just a super-sensitive part of the car if you get to the left rear, and obviously it hooked him to the right, and we won. The end.”

MORE: Ross Chastain, Noah Gragson in post-race scuffle

MORE: Long: NASCAR, F1 offer similarities

Kyle Larson — Finished 2nd: “I was really loose. I was trying to do what I could to manage it, just was really loose at that end, and yeah, just he was a little bit better than me there at the end. I haven’t seen a replay, either, but obviously he was side-drafting really aggressively like you would, but he was like touching me it felt like, and it just had me kind of out of control.”

William Byron — Finished 3rd: “It was an amazing effort by our No. 24 Liberty University Chevy team. We all but wrecked twice, went three laps down and came back to finish third – it’s just incredible. It’s just a testament to the strength of this race team. The tail wasn’t exactly right there at the end. It was knocked over, and the car was really loose toward the end of any longer run. A tough situation, but really happy with that effort. Just a great job by this whole Liberty University Chevy team. They gave us a really hard fight, so good to come home third.”

Bubba Wallace — Finished 4th: “I was terrible on restarts. We would lose spots in one and two and gain about 50 back in three and four. Just a grind all day trying to figure out what we needed for our Dr. Pepper Zero Sugar Toyota Camry. All four corners of the car, we were just missing a little something. Good day, we have to keep climbing the ladder. It’s been a frustrating start to the season, when you are thinking it is going to be your best start. We’ve got to do a little personal reset, mental reset and come out and fight and claw for everything and put together a solid race. This is our second clean race (this season). This is what happens when we have good clean races.”

Ross Chastain — Finished 5th: “I got tight off of 4, for sure. Noah and I have a very similar attitude on the racetrack, and we train together, we prepare together, we know each other’s — every little bit about each other. Yeah, definitely crowded him up off of 4, and he took a swipe at us in 3, and then he came down and grabbed a hold of me, and a very big man once told me we have a no-push policy here at Trackhouse. Hats off to everybody at Advent Health for coming here to the Advent Health 400 and fight for a top 5. There was times in the race where we did not have the grip and the balance in the car to do that. A couple good restarts at the end, and perfect matched set of tires by (crew chief) Phil Surgen to see a heck of a fight from this group.”

Joey Logano — Finished 6th: “Well, if we had the right tires on, it’s pretty good. Seems like it’s an inconsistency in tires. We’ve been fighting that the last few weeks. So we got to get to the bottom of that to understand it a little better. Overall, the stage points were big. Getting a stage win was a big one – decent points with the 10 points, as well. Probably with a better restart, I could have finished top-two or three. But, oh well. We just need more horsepower – all of us.”

Chase Elliott — Finished 7th: “We didn’t really show it with the results, but I was excited about how the day went for our No. 9 UniFirst Chevy team. We had a couple of high spots. Got the lead there when we were racing with Kyle (Larson). That’s better than normal for me, so we’ll just try to build on that and get better. We fired off tight there a couple of times and then lost the track position. I thought we were pretty decent again that last run. Ryan (Blaney) and I got together off (turn) 4, and I hit him pretty good with my right-front, and I don’t think that was doing me any favors.”

Aric Almirola — Finished 13th: “We had an OK day. We got up there and I thought we were going to run top 10, and then out of nowhere, spun off of Turn 2. Our cars are really knife-edge right now. We’re having a lot of trouble getting our cars balanced where we need it to be. There is such a small window to get the balance where we need it to be, that it just makes it really difficult to race. We can be really tight; we can be really loose, but we can’t get it in the window where we need it to be – consistent. So, we’ll just keep working.”

AJ Allmendinger — Finished 14th: “I felt like we fought hard all day. We got the car closer overall, but we were still kind of fighting back and forth between loose and tight. The No. 16 Action Industries crew did a good job on strategy, making adjustments, and our pitstops were really good. We were able to get some stage points, as well. Today was definitely something we can build on.”

Justin Haley — Finished 18th: “We had an up-and-down day today. We fired off a little tight, but I was pretty optimistic about our No. 31 Celsius Camaro ZL1. Unfortunately, some pit road issues and a flat tire were indicative of our day. My crew chief, Trent (Owens), had a great strategy to get us back on the lead lap, but I felt like the flat tire did some damage early on to the splitter, so we just struggled the rest of the race. We will take a top 20 and head to Darlington next week where we had a great run last year.”

Erik Jones — Finished 21st: “It was an OK day for the No. 43 Allegiant Chevy team. Just kind of up and down and kind of a lot of chaos. Got wrecked and ended up just finishing farther back than we wanted. We’ll take it, learn from it, and hopefully be better for next week.”

Kyle Busch — Finished 35th: “Just tried to get below the No. 6 (Brad Keselowski) off of two. I wasn’t quite clear, got clipped and spun out. I feel bad for my guys. We’ve been fighting hard all day long to get ourselves up there and get further up with track position. We finally got it and then all of the cautions kind of came to kind of throw off strategy. We weren’t able to get stage points and then ruined our race there with getting clipped. Just bad luck situations. A lot of guys up there on older tires — you’re trying to get by them, make the most of your stage and then stuff like this keeps happening.”

Christopher Bell — Finished 36th: “I think I made a mistake trying to get off of Turn 2 and got into the 1 (Ross Chastain) and spun out. Disappointing day. I felt like our SiriusXM Camry was everything I needed to compete for a good finish at least, and I’m out of the race. (I was) just trying to get a little too aggressive on the side draft and got into the 1 and spun out.”

Read more about NASCAR

Ross Chastain hits Noah Gragson with a punch after Kansas race NASCAR Cup Series results at Kansas: Denny Hamlin wins Denny Hamlin wins NASCAR Cup Series race at Kansas with last-lap pass

What drivers said at Kansas Speedway originally appeared on