Q. Can you take us through that last lap. At what point did you realize that Junior wasn't going to catch up to you, you were going to be the one to win the Daytona 500? What was going on during that last lap?
JAMIE McMURRAY: Well, I mean, you know, I remember getting in the lead going into Turn 3, and I was being shoved so fast into the corner that, you know, the first thing I thought was I need to hold my car on the bottom. I have to make sure I stay on this yellow line. If I couldn't keep my left front on the yellow line, I was having to get off the gas coming out of the corner so I didn't hit the wall. I need to stay on the yellow line.
I got the car down. I looked in my mirror and I saw the 88. I was like, "I haven't seen him the last few laps. So, where did he come from?" Then you don't know. You look in the mirror and you can't tell at what rate of speed he's catching you. He is catching you, you know that for sure, because there's a draft.
Q. I saw where you had tweeted a picture of the trophy in your motor coach, which was pretty cool. Where has the trophy been so far all week? Where is it ultimately going to go?
I just kept bouncing my eyes back and forth from the start/finish line to where he was, trying to gauge, am I going to get to the start/finish line before he gets to me? Once I realized that, I started looking at the flagstand. I was like, "It's over." I wish I could express the excitement that runs through your body at that point.
JAMIE McMURRAY: They told me that I could leave the trophy in Victory Lane and they would ship it to me. I was like, "No, I want to take this with me tonight. This is going to my motor home."
My bus did not go to Fontana. It actually went back to Charlotte. It's probably at my house by now, if I had to guess. I would say that Tim either has it with him or he has driven it over to my house. My mom is actually watching our dogs while we're on this media tour. I'm hoping it's at my house right now.
Q. Thanks for showing some real emotion.
JAMIE McMURRAY: I didn't do it by choice, you understand! It is what it is.
Q. When you look at the last few Daytona winners, the last two haven't made the Chase, and the last one hasn't won a Cup race. What sort of challenges do you think face you after winning this race?
JAMIE McMURRAY: That is the media and their stat guy going to work. I don't know that you can really – I don't really put any thought into basing on who won the previous Daytona 500s 'cause I think that's kind of irrelevant to the rest of your season.
Certainly going and running well at Fontana is the goal from here on out. As far as putting any thought into what the previous three guys have done, I'm not really paying any attention to that kind of stuff.
Q. Tell us what you've done since you left Daytona and what's ahead before Fontana?
JAMIE McMURRAY: Well, actually I went to bed about 1:00 after the 500 in the morning. I woke up at 4:45. I couldn't sleep. We were so excited about winning. Then we put the car in the Daytona 500 Experience. We did all of the ESPN and SPEED Channel interviews in the 500 Experience, the radio interviews. Then we got on NASCAR's plane and we flew to New York. I had to go buy some clothes. So did Christy, because we didn't have any clothes with us.
I was asked today at a luncheon why none of the NASCAR drivers bring a suit to Daytona with them, knowing if they win, they have to have a suit. I was like, "That is a sure way to jinx yourself of not ever winning the race if you come prepared."
We went to a department store here in New York and I bought a suit. They tailored it for me at the store. We got in the car that we had driving us around. We drove to Letterman's studio and I had about three minutes to spare before I walked out on stage, did the Letterman show, and came off.
I was worried about being nervous on the show. I didn't have enough time to even think. They literally got my microphone on me in time to go out and do the show. We did that, went to dinner. Then this morning it started all over again. I got up at 4:45 again. Did the local FOX affiliate here in New York City, then Regis and Kelly. Today we did the luncheon. It's been a teleconference.
It is amazing to me how much attention the Daytona 500 winner gets. I mean, I knew it because I've talked to them. But until you live it, you cannot imagine how much there's been.
Q. A lot of people say there's nothing like that very first win, which you got at Charlotte with Chip back in 2002. How would you compare that victory with winning the Daytona 500?
JAMIE McMURRAY: I said that. I remember for a year afterward thinking, "There will never be another victory like your first one." But, the Daytona 500 is different. There's so much build-up leading up to this race for everyone with all of the interviews you do. Everyone, while you're in Daytona, asks you, "What is it going to mean if you win the Daytona 500?" So you've talked about it all week. Then you win. There's so much that goes along with it.
Q. It shows I guess how dependent we are on technology. You mentioned a bunch of drivers text messaged you. Did anybody do it old school, come up to you in Victory Lane?
It's so much different than winning any other race. You win any other race, you do Victory Lane, then you go home. You do the teleconference on Tuesday or whenever they have the teleconference from either your race shop or from your house. But you win this race and there's just so much that goes along with it, so much attention.
One of the guys who asked a question earlier, you know, that this is our race that people who don't watch NASCAR every single weekend, this is the race they watch. You get like a whole different group of people who become your fan.
JAMIE McMURRAY: Greg Biffle came up to me in Victory Lane. I'm assuming he was on his way to the media center. Greg and I are friends away from the racetrack. It does not shock me he came over. Then, obviously, Juan Montoya came over and congratulated me and the entire team. That was really cool of those guys to come over and say congratulations.
Q. You came in right away and got a victory in your second race. Was there a feeling that this is going to be easy, then as the year rolls on, what did you think about that?
JAMIE McMURRAY: When I won at Charlotte for Chip, initially, Sterling had already won in that car a couple times earlier in the season. That race team was on it, not just the organization, but the 40 team. I mean, they were on their way to being able to contend for the championship. It was a great car to be able to step into.
I never thought it was going to be easy. And actually, the following year, we had an opportunity to win four or five races. One of them was the Brickyard. Caution flags just killed us. Ended up costing me two or three victories.
So, it never seemed like it was going to be easy. But it was certainly I would say "awkward" is my word for being able to win in your second start. I mean, I still remember that day, it's pretty clear in my mind. I remember being overwhelmed with the amount of media attention that you got because, you know, when you come from the Truck Series or even the Busch [Nationwide] Series, there's not near as much attention paid to those drivers as what the Cup guys get.