Q: Brad, at the beginning of the season you did something spectacular with social media. You had your phone in your car and during the red flag at Daytona you were able to post on Twitter; people were following you like crazy, it was trending nationwide and it made a big impact on the sport. Coming into last weekend, you got fined for having your phone in your car, so my question is: Will you still bring it into your car for this race, or what do you think that means for the future of being able to tweet or be a part of Twitter and the social media world during a red flag at the race?
BRAD KESELOWSKI: Well, I think your first part was would I put it in my car this weekend? Was that your first question? You've got two questions. He earned two questions. I don't know, you haven't got two questions. You've got to pick one. Which one do you want?
Q: What does it mean for the future of…
BRAD KESELOWSKI: What does it mean for the future? I'll answer that one. That's a good one. I think it means that you can still be involved in social media, but I think NASCAR has certainly said that they want to draw a line as to what you can do specifically in the car, and I think that's what it means for the future.
Q: Both of you know what the scenarios are. Will you have your teams let you know how you stand, or is that too much to think about during the race? Do you want to know where the other guy is, how many positions you've got to get, or do you kind of wait until you get down to the last 50 laps to start thinking about stuff like that?
BRAD KESELOWSKI: I mean, I don't really know how to answer it. I guess you could look at it that way, but you know if you go out there and run well, at least from my position, that it all takes care of itself. With maybe the exception of the last lap or two, I've got a pretty good idea of where I'm at on the racetrack, or I should, and that stuff works its way out if we're in a good position.
JIMMIE JOHNSON: Yeah, just to add to that, if we get to the end of the race and they're not having the day that they would hope to have, that information could… it's really probably not going to change anything that I do. I still need every spot I can get on the track. But I'm sure information will come in, and even if it isn't specific, I will be able to tell by the tone in Chad [Knaus]'s voice if we're in the good or the bad!
Q: As the psych major or the pretend psych major of the group, Jimmie, I can't help but notice you brought up the IndyCar championship and what happened there. You said a top 15 finish is no lay-up. It seems you're kind of tweaking it a little bit, maybe intentionally, maybe not, and we know from the past, I guess, two championships you guys messed with Denny Hamlin a little bit up there, Carl Edwards got a little rattled from Tony Stewart. Maybe you're doing it on purpose, maybe you're not. Is that the intent, to put the weight on Brad? And Brad, you seem to just be sitting there square-jawed looking straight ahead. Are you too dumb to know any better?
BRAD KESELOWSKI: Wow, I thought Jimmie was going to be tough. Dang. Jimmie, you've got a lot of work to do to catch up with her!
Q: And I mean that, with all due respect. (Laughter.)
BRAD KESELOWSKI: I think you've watched "Talladega Nights" too much.
JIMMIE JOHNSON: You know, of course I'm going to find points that give myself motivation and my team, and if there's anything I can do – and Brad, if you'd like me to call later and remind you of any other examples, I certainly can – of guys that didn't pull off the season finale as they would hope.
But one thing I've learned is that regardless of how experienced anyone is in this championship battle, at some point the magnitude of it hits you. At some point, he may be very comfortable and calm now, it may not happen until he's in the car, but at some point that magnitude hits, and I've lived through it five times. That's a turning moment, and we'll see how he responds. It also carries over to guys changing tires. There's some point where every member on that race team goes, this is it, this is what I've worked so hard far. I'll be glad to point out those moments as needed.
MODERATOR: Brad, do you have any rebuttal there?
BRAD KESELOWSKI: I think my question is how dumb am I?
Q: Roger has seen Will Power fall victim to it four times in IndyCar, so what are you doing to not let this rattle you?
BRAD KESELOWSKI: This, as in the opportunity to win a championship? Well, I think that it's not something that you can really answer in a sense that's easy for this group to understand. I mean, sorry, maybe that was a jab back. I've been listening to too much Tony Stewart.
But I think it comes from the people that you're surrounded by and how comfortable they are, and that comes into your own world, and I can tell you that the group that I have and that I'm surrounded by, whether it's in my personal life or professional life, they're not known for being very rattled in these opportunities, in these positions, and I think that's probably the biggest thing that you can do is be surrounded by people that share that same passion that you have, but also put out a level of calmness that is somewhat addictive.
I feel like if you look at Paul [Wolfe, crew chief], Paul is pretty stone-faced, and that's his style. He's not a real emotional guy, and certainly you cue off of that, just like Jimmie was saying he does with Chad, and there's other guys. You look at Roger, Roger is the same way. You're not going to see Roger showing a bunch of emotion even if we do win it. He's going to be very stoic, as he always is, which is great.
And my family life, personal life is the same way, whether it's my dad or mom, when they have their successes, they're certainly very passionate and happy for them, but they're also very quiet and very capable of moving forward and looking forward to not get too caught up in the moment.
For me I guess the best way to answer is I'm relying on the people I'm surrounded by.