PARKER KLIGERMAN (No. 29 Cooper Standard RAM) Finished 11th “After having that problem in qualifying, we were going to be patient, we were going to take our time, we were going to ride in the back and we were going to figure things out, avoid the wrecks. And we did that for the most part.
It was just that we got to 10 to go and Brad (Keselowski) and I were kind of plotting our attack, the two-truck deal. We couldn’t do it effectively when everyone was two-wide without feeling like we were going to wreck each other. And then sure enough, every wreck from there on out was in front of us and it was just damage control.
That one wreck that we ended up in with the 15, I don’t know what happened there. We were three-wide and he just decided that we weren’t there and came down on us. There was nothing you could do. I was lucky to get out of that. We had an indestructible Cooper Standard RAM and that’s a testament to all the guys at BKR (Brad Keselowski Racing) and all the hard work they put in during the off-season.”
HOW IMPORTANT IS THIS FINISH GOING TO BE IN THE RACE FOR THE CAMPING WORLD TRUCK SERIES CHAMPIONSHIP? “I look at the points and I see about three or four guys that are championship contenders ahead of us. So right now, theoretically, we’re sitting third or fourth in the championship. We go to Martinsville and we have a good run and we continue this for the first five and we’re going to be there. These guys are going to know that we’re there to come and get this championship and we’re going to figure out ways to win these races.”
HOW MUCH DID YOU LEARN TONIGHT THAT WILL HELP YOU LATER THIS SEASON AT TALLADEGA? “You know, I say every superspeedway restrictor plate race has a personality. This one, for whatever reason, just took the personality of we’re all going to ride and then at the end, it was going to be complete madness.
Every time there are a lot of trucks at the end, it’s going to be madness and sure enough it was. We were hoping to get one of those races where we get a lot of trucks wrecked early, not putting anyone else down, but that’s what we were hoping, and then we could use that two-truck tandem to go to the front and win this thing.
It just wasn’t in the cards tonight.” YOU HAD A RESPECTABLE FINISH TONIGHT. HOW IMPORTANT IS IT TO START THE SEASON OFF ON THE RIGHT FOOT? “It’s huge. It gets you going in terms of momentum. We’ve got a month off, but we’re working hard for Martinsville because we have a shot at this. It gets everyone pumped up saying right off the bat we’re there and we can do this once we do this the first three or four races and we’re confident we can. We’ve got a great RAM for Martinsville, we’ve got a great RAM for Rockingham, and hopefully they’ll see us atop that pylon next time.”
BRAD KESELOWSKI (No. 19 twitter RAM) Finished 27th
IT LOOKED LIKE YOU HAD A STRONG RAM DURING THE FIRST HALF OF THE RACE, RUNNING IN THE TOP FIVE. THEN YOU GOT BEHIND AND THE NIGHT WENT DOWNHILL FROM THERE. “We just lost our track position there and couldn’t seem to get it back. I don’t know. I’m learning for sure. Looks like I’ve got some more learning to do (smiles).”
WHAT HAPPENED IN THE ACCIDENT? “I couldn’t tell. I got hit from behind. As to why that all went down, I don’t know.”
THIS WAS A WILD RACE. WAS IT KIND OF WHAT YOU EXPECTED?
“Actually it was tamer than what I expected. We tried to keep putting ourselves in a safe position and we weren’t able to do it. We were able to do it, but we weren’t able to reap the rewards of it.”
DID YOU LEARN SOMETHING TONIGHT WITH THE TWO TRUCKS THAT WILL HELP YOUR PROGRAM MOVING FORWARD?
“You know, I’m always learning. I know which lessons to apply and when to apply ‘em.”