After finishing 12th in Chicago and 5th in New Hampshire, Jimmie Johnson sits fourth in the Chase heading to Dover International Speedway this weekend
Raleigh, North Carolina (Sept. 23, 2014) – NASCAR driver and six-time Sprint Cup Champion Jimmie Johnson has been heard talking about his race car driving like a tank. Tuesday at Charlotte Motor Speedway Jimmie Johnson met with the media and fans to talk about the upcoming Bank of America 500 and take a comparison drive in a World War II tank.
“I have made references to how bad my race car is driving and it driving like a tank. Today I will find out if it’s true,” Johnson joked before climbing aboard. “It’s usually relative to our car not turning sharp enough and from our debriefing earlier, it doesn’t turn very sharp.”
“The comparison’s fair,” Johnson said of driving the 75,000-pound battle-tested beast. “They don’t turn very well. I just feel bad that I tore up the grass so bad.”
You can watch Jimmie Johnson compete in the fifth race in the Chase for NASCAR’s Sprint Cup Series Championship, the Bank of America 500, at Charlotte Motor Speedway on Oct. 10 and 11th. Check ESPN and local providers for details on possible television coverage of the upcoming race.
“When we get to Charlotte – granted the format is far different now – but you usually have an idea of who the players are. We’ll have a good idea of who’s showing strength,” Johnson said. “I want another win sticker. This has been a great track for me over the years. It has changed a lot. The surface in May was finally starting to lose its grip. We have a lot of little bumps building around the race track which over the next few years will turn into big bumps and allow us to move around the race track and find some different lines.”
Penske Racing gives Ford its 1th win of the season, but the first at Chicagoland Speedway
Joliet, Illinois (Sept. 14, 2014) – Brad Keselowski won for the second consecutive time, and the fifth overall this season, on Sunday at Chicagoland Speedway to advance to the Challenger round of the 2014 Chase.
This win puts Keselowski and Ford Racing at the front of the pack and in control of their own destiny heading to the Sylvania 300 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on Sept. 21. Presently, he’s just seven points ahead of second place racer Jeff Gordon, nine ahead of his teammate Joey Logano in third, and 13 ahead of Kevin Harvick in the Chase for the 2014 Sprint Cup Championship trophy. You can check the official standings for the Sprint Cup series here.
With only two weeks remaining in the first round of the Chase, several drivers are on the verge of being eliminated, and need to put their foot down on the accelerator. Ryan Newman finished 15th at Chicagoland Motor Speedway, after starting second on the grid, and needs to pick up the pace this Sunday. AJ Allmendinger sits five points outside the cutline, and after finishing 22nd last week, will need to find a path through the pack and finish high in the standings to keep his hopes for the second round of the Chase alive. Greg Biffle sits nine points behind the cutline and after an average start and 23rd place finish at Chicagoland Motor Speedway, is expected to let his horses do the talking this Sunday at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
Sports History Today was on hand after the race to listen to Brad Keselowski talk about his win at Chicagoland on Sunday.
Brad Keselowski, No. 2 Miller Lite Ford Fusion
How you were able to win? “I am not really sure what to say. I don’t really know what happened I just know we got to the lead. There was traffic and I was just digging and in the zone. The recorder was turned off so I don’t remember what happened. I had my head down doing all I could do. We had a great Miller Lite Ford Fusion that I knew from the start would be good but man it was really awesome the last few runs. We really dialed it in and the 2 crew did a excellent job. What a day. Man, I am still pumped.”
Starting 25th on the starting grid, how much patience did it take to make it to the front and win? “You have to be so patient. The cars in traffic are all over the track and it is very easy to spin out on your own and you have to pace yourself. I don’t know what to say. I am so thankful to be here. I want to say thanks because I know the fans can hear me. I saw all of them standing on their feet when we made the pass for the lead and that was awesome. Thank you fans for being here and for your support. What a great day. God that was sweet.” How does it feel to make it to the next round of the Chase? “Awesome.”
Give our readers a few comments about the way the race played out for you today. “I guess you couldn’t ask for a better way to start the Chase other than starting up front. Just phenomenal with the way things played out. I don’t know if we were the fastest car. There were some runs where I thought we were really fast and then some runs where I thought the 4 and the 42 were really fast. It was so hard to tell. Whoever had the cleanest air was really at such an advantage. But towards the middle part of the race, that’s when we lost track position. That was something that we all thought was awful at the time, but I guess it worked out. Then from there we just fought, just climbed and clawed. I think we got up to eighth, and Paul made the call or decision to pit a little bit late. It worked out perfectly. We were able to be on pit road right as the yellow came out. That put us from eighth to fourth, I think. We were able to take advantage with that on the restarts, get up to third. I just saw a hole and I went for it. The 4 and the 42 were racing really hard, doing all the things they needed to do. It just opened a hole. I didn’t know if my car would stick or not, but I knew I’d regret it if I didn’t try it. I tried it, it did. That got us into the lead. Even that was going to be close. I think the 42 was quite a bit faster as the long run went. We got that yellow. Things evened out. We were able to take advantage from there.”
Everything didn’t go well with the car today, but despite this you seemed to be confident throughout the race. Was there ever a time during the race you thought things were about to fall apart, or were you confident throughout the competition? “I knew we were going to need to catch a break to get to Victory Lane from there. That was going to be tough. We did catch a small one. But I was really surprised how much speed we had to get as close as we did to the front there. That was amazing. I think we drove up to eighth. We restarted 16th or 17th in position, but probably had to be 30th or something in car order. So to get by that many cars, get close to the front, was really an incredible run, and put us in position to capitalize when that yellow came out. That was something that all came together. From there, I knew once we got to fourth with 30 or 40 to go, it was going to be about executing the restarts. We had an okay one the first time where we just really held serve. The outside groove was very, very difficult to get a good restart in with wheel spin. Then we had a great one there the last one. There were three of them. I can’t remember there were two or three of them. The last one, once we had gotten the lead. We just put it all together, and that was very, very special.”
Give our readers an idea of what this win means in terms of the Chase for the Sprint Cup Championship? “It means a lot. My boss would say don’t read your own press clippings. I want to enjoy the moment but I still know there’s nine weeks to go. We have a bit of a hall pass for the next two, which I’m very appreciative. But those other seven, nobody cares that we won Chicago, nobody cares that we won Richmond or the other three races. It keeps resetting. You have to reset yourself. You have to keep developing the car and pushing as a team, whether it’s on pit road, the car handling, spec, whatever it might be, or driver tactics. So I want to be thankful for today, but I know there’s a long ways to go. Today was about as much of a statement as you can make on a week one with ten weeks to go. I don’t want to understate it but certainly don’t want to overstate it. It’s a hard balance.”
What does this race mean for you and the team? Is this win a road sign the other racers need to heed? “I think kind of like I was saying before, it’s a statement for this week. After we get done with Dover, everything resets. I still don’t think we were the fastest car. It was probably pretty even between the 4 and the 42 and maybe the 24. It was about the clean air and restarts. But I’m still very thankful for what we were able to do today and we got to keep pushing.”
How is this win going to change the way you race this weekend at New Hampshire Motor Speedway? Will you be willing to let it all loose, knowing it doesn’t really matter what you do here, or will you play it conservative and save the car for later races? “I don’t know. I guess that’s something we have to sit down and discuss as a group. I can’t really say I’ve thought about that in detail. I think there’s potential with people. There’s potential with pieces we might be worried about from a reliability standpoint, things of that nature that come to mind. I don’t know what those opportunities are. A guy like Paul, Travis, Tim Cindric, they know that best and could probably answer that question better, but we still have a lot to talk through and work on. Certainly don’t want to lose focus on the seven races after that, as well.”
NASCAR Sprint Cup series action continues this weekend on the pavement at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon. Brad Keselowski will be on hand to entertain and make a run for his third consecutive Sprint Cup series win. Always willing to talk to fans and let it all go on the race track, Brad will be happy to show you his No. 2 Miller Lite Ford Fusion, and sign an autograph.
If you can’t make it to Loudon this Sunday for the running of the Sylvania 300 on the pavement of the New Hampshire Motor Speedway. ESPN’s Motorsports This Week is airing a live telecast of the second race of the 2014 Chase on NASCAR Countdown starting at 1 p.m. ET. The green flag will drop around 2:15 p.m., so you have time to grab a few snacks and get ready for the fun!
Were you planning on watching the Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway on ABC this Saturday night? Plans to broadcast this NASCAR race live nationally on ABC starting with NASCAR Countdown at 7 p.m. ET will be preempted in 15 different regions of the country due to the scheduled showing of NFL preseason football on local channels.
People planning on watching this race who are also satellite TV customers can view the competition on channel 209-1 for DirecTV and 145 on DISH. Cable customers can also view the race in 11 of the 15 markets named on different channels.
Viewers in Milwaukee, the Arkansas cities of Little Rock, Fort Smith, and Jonesboro, and Tyler, Texas planning on tuning in to watch NASCAR Countdown will be disappointed. Unfortunately, due to the showing of local news this broadcast will not be shown, but the channels in question will air the scheduled NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway starting at around 7:30 p.m ET.
The green flag is expected to drop about 7:43 on this Sprint Cup Series race, so check below to see if you’re in one of the 15 regions named, and make the appropriate changes.
Austin, Texas – race telecast on digital cable: Time Warner channels 811 and 1240, Suddenlink channel 721, AT&T Channel 3024.
Charlotte, N.C. – race telecast on WAXN TV64. Available on Time Warner channel 1230, Charter channel 703, Compas channel 16, Comporium channel 110. WSOC-TV will join race in progress after football game ends.
Casper, Wyo. – only available to satellite TV subscribers
Cheyenne, Wyo. – only available to satellite TV subscribers
Duluth, Minn. – race telecast on digital cable: Charter channel 398, Mediacom channel 113.
Harrisburg, Pa. – race telecast on digital cable: Comcast channel 246, Verizon channel 461, Blue Ridge Cable channel 152, Kuhn channel 67, Nittany Media 228.
Houston – race telecast on digital cable: Comcast channels 315 and 685.
Louisville, Ky. – race telecast on digital cable: Comcast channel 432, Time Warner channel 207.
Nashville, Tenn. – race telecast on digital cable: Comcast channel 245, Charter channel 136.
St. Joseph, Mo. – only available to satellite TV subscribers
San Antonio, Tex. – only available to satellite TV subscribers
Sioux Falls, S.D. – race telecast on digital cable: Mid-Continent channels 596 and 614. (Also DISH channel 36).
Tulsa, Okla. – race telecast on digital cable: Cox channel 131.
Washington, D.C. – race telecast on digital cable: Comcast channel 205, Cox channel 806, Verizon FiOS channel 467.
Weslaco, Tex. – race telecast on digital cable: Time Warner channel 877.
Dover, Delaware (September 28, 2013) – Joey Logano raced his way into the history books again on Saturday, winning his fourth straight NASCAR Nationwide Series event at Dover International Speedway in the 5-Hour Energy 200. Joey Logano is now the only NASCAR Nationwide driver to ever win four times on the Monster Mile of Dover and the only driver to win four consecutive events in any racing series at the mile long superspeedway in Delaware.
When asked about his historic day, Joey answered. “This has been my favorite place ever since I started here. Even when I barrel-rolled down the straightaway, it’s still my favorite place.”
With four straight wins at the Monster Mile, it is not hard to see why this track is his favorite place to race. The race on Saturday at the old track was recorded as the fastest ever in the NASCAR Nationwide Series, beating the previous record of 130.152 set in 1998 by Dale Earnhardt. Jr. by 1.082 mph.
The fast race was really due to the 160 laps they raced under a green flag. Logano had the pole advantage and due to this was ahead for the first 18 laps, before Kyle Busch made his move. By the time they reached the 26th lap things became a lot tighter on the track, when the caution flag was raised due to a spin by Brian Scott. The caution flag was raised again during Lap 37, when Donnie Neuenberger ran into the wall. By this time in the race, the race car of Joey Logano was running noticeably slower on the track. This prompted Joey to come into the pits for a long stop, during which time he had this to say.
“[Busch was] really fast in the beginning of the race and we were really loose,” Logano said. “I even wanted to stop at the caution before that. But we decided to stay out a little bit longer and got that next caution. We took that hit on pit road making these big adjustments. “These Nationwide races are short and you have to make big swings early. [Crew chief] Jeremy [Bullins] made some big swings on this thing and got it close, and we just needed the one more stop to fine tune it. I was just able to run my race and take care of the tires, and do the right things in the car.”
The extended pit stop worked wonders for the race car of Logano and Busch had elected to stay out on the track and gain ground, instead of pitting. When Busch eventually had to head into the pit during Lap 87, the rest of the field followed his example a few laps later, and this put Busch behind the rest of the racers on pit stops, and would mean he would need to stop one more time before the end of the race.
By this time the tires of Logano were 30 laps newer than the race tires of Busch and he started to rapidly gain ground on the leader. He caught Busch on Lap 141 and from that point on there was nothing but open race track between him and the finish line.
Logano “When your car drives good here and you have what you need, when you have lapped traffic it doesn’t even slow you down,” Logano said. “When you’re loose, you get stuck. In these Nationwide races, being able to get through the lapped traffic as quick as possible is key to winning these things.”
At the press conference after the 5-Hour Energy 200 Joey Logano had a few things to say.
Joey Logano – No. 22 Hertz Ford Mustang – We had a fast race car. I don’t know what else I need to say. This Hertz Ford was really good when we unloaded and then throughout practice the track changed on us a little bit and last night we made some good changes on the race car. Jeremy and all the guys and girls on the team did a good job tuning the thing up for me. We started the race too loose and they went for it. These Nationwide races are short. You’ve got to make big swings real early and I feel like Jeremy and I have worked enough together now that when I say loose and how loose he kind of knows how much it is and he made some big swings on this thing and got it pretty close. Then we needed one more stop to just kind of fine-tune it. After that second green-flag stop it was dialed in pretty good. I was just able to run my race and take care of the tires, make sure I was doing the right things in the car, and get another victory. It’s just really cool to get four in a row here at Dover. That’s pretty awesome. It’s been my favorite race track ever since I started here, yes, even when I barrel-rolled down the back straightaway it’s still my favorite place, and I think we showed it today. Hopefully, my Shell/Pennzoil Ford tomorrow is just as fast as this one. If that’s the case, it’s gonna be a lot of fun.”
The No. 22 Hertz Ford
The crew chief for the No. 22 Hertz Ford Mustang, Jeremy Bullins, also had few comments on the race and car.
Jeremy Bullins – Crew Chief -No. 22 Hertz Ford Mustang “It means a lot that we’re continuing to build good cars. This is another brand new car that the guys at the shop built. We just keep pushing forward and, like Joey said, the first race here we learned a lot about what the car needs for him. I feel like we’ve learned a lot about, like what he says, when he says ‘loose’ we’re learning how to work on it and we’re getting closer with that. We talked about it before the race, there were a lot of streaks to be kept alive today and I think we managed to pull that off, so it was just a great day on pit road. The guys did a good job. The whole team just did an excellent job today.”
When asked why it has been so hard for him to have success on the race track on Sunday at Dover International Speedway, Joey answered.
Joey Logano “I tell you what, on the Cup side I really do feel like I’ve had some strong cars here. I’ve had a lot of misfortune in the Cup races, but I’ve had a lot of fast race cars here that are capable of running top five. I’ve had loose wheels. I’ve had flat tires. I’ve had motors blowing up. I’ve gone through a lot here at this race track and that’s why if you look at the stats like you did, you wouldn’t know that we ran as well as we did, but we have run really well at this race track on the Cup side. I’m expecting tomorrow to be similar, I hope. As far as the way the Chase has gone, Chicago, we were doing everything we were supposed to do. We got the pole and we were leading laps, but unfortunately things break on race cars every now and again and that cost us a really good finish there and a lot of points, obviously. Last week at Loudon, it’s probably my toughest race track that I go to. I go from the place that I hate the most to the place I love the most this week and we came out of there with a 14th-place finish, which is not good, but, for me, is decent actually. We come here this weekend and we know that we can still run up there. We still have a lot of momentum on this team and we know what we did to get in the Chase and how good we are, and we’ve just got to keep pushing forward and keep fighting. I always say that the 22 team over there never quits and they never die and that’s what we did to get here. We’re not out of it yet. We can still win it. We’ve got a tough road ahead of us and we really can’t have a bad race in the next eight, but we can still do it. We’re not out yet. The fat lady is not singing yet. She’s warming up her voice, but she’s not singing yet.”
Was it surprising to see this race run 160 laps to the finish line without a caution and were you surprised how easily you caught up to Busch after the series of green flags evened out?
Joey Logano “Yes and yes. They were really fast in the beginning of the race. We were really loose, so I even wanted to stop the caution before that because we were hanging on. We were pretty loose, but we decided to stay out a little bit longer and then got that next caution. We took our hit on pit road a little bit making these big adjustments that we were gonna lose a couple spots and some guys took two, and then we were able to drive our way close to the front and then, obviously, he didn’t pit so he has to pit earlier than us, and then at that point we have newer tires so we were able to kind of run him back down. I don’t really know what happened after that. I was just driving in circles as fast as I could.”
“That’s when we just came out on new tires and I radioed in to Jeremy and said, ‘This car is right on. It’s right where I need it to be,’ and I was able to carry really fast lap times. When your car drives good here and you have exactly what it needs, when you get to lap traffic it doesn’t even slow you down. But if it’s loose like it was, you get to a lapped car and you’re just kind of stuck and you can’t go anywhere. He had it right where I needed to be that I was able to pass cars when I got to them and really make up that gap a lot because in these Nationwide races having a fast car is one thing, but being able to get through the lap traffic as quick as possible is key to winning these things.”
Concord, North Carolina (Oct. 12, 2013) – Kyle Busch will be looking to win at the Charlotte Motor Speedway for the thirteenth time during the upcoming Bank of America 500 Sprint Cup Series race on October 12, 2013. His twelve victories at the old track in North Carolina rank him first in Nationwide Series and Camping World Truck Series wins, but he still hasn’t managed to win a Sprint Cup Series race on the legendary 1.5-mile superspeedway in Charlotte.
Charlotte Motor Speedway is a 1.5-mile monster drivers either love or hate, or both
Kyle recently stated he was looking forward to getting his first Sprint Cup Series win during the Bank of America 500, and taking home a Bruton Smith trophy to put on his mantle.
Kyle is ready to race on October 12 for his chance at a championship
Kyle Busch “That elusive win in the Cup series has eluded us here,” Busch said. “We’ve had a lot of great runs – some second place finishes and third place finishes and a lot of good runs where we’ve led a lot of laps, but in the last run of the race it seems like we’re just a little bit off. But we’re looking forward to Oct. 12 here at the Bank of America 500 and being able to take home one of those nice gold (Bruton Smith) trophies.”
Kyle will need to have a strong Bank of America 500 on October 12, if he wants to make a run at winning the Chase. This race will be the fifth of the ten races included in the Chase, and he’ll need to have a strong position heading into this event. His overall record on this superspeedway gives him a good chance, one would think, but anything can happen out on the track. Once you get out there all previous records get thrown out the window and it’s everybody for himself. He’ll need Lady Luck on his side, if he’s going to be successful.
Kyle certainly knows the value of this race, “You want to get off to a good start (in the Chase),” he said. “Our team, the Joe Gibbs Racing team, obviously has gotten off to a good start. Once you get past the halfway point, that’s sort of when you define the contenders… That’s when you know who you’re going to be racing against for the championship.”
Winner of two Bank of America 500 races and NASCAR legend Dale Jarrett was recently asked if he had some advice to give Kyle Busch on how to win at the old track in North Carolina. “What am I going to tell Kyle Busch about winning here? He obviously knows how to win,” said Jarrett, who was seated in front of all 12 of Busch’s trophies from his Nationwide and Camping World Truck series wins at Charlotte. “He’s, if not the best driver I’ve seen come through the ranks of NASCAR, he’s certainly one of the top three. It’s just incredible what he does with a racecar. What I can offer is that, as much as you can have a good car – he has plenty of talent – but good fortune is probably the best thing you can have on your side.”
Kyle Busch fans can watch their hero race for his thirteenth win and first Sprint Cup Series victory at the superspeedway in Charlotte on October 12, 2013. They can also catch all of the fun happening on October 10 and 11, like the Bojangles’ Pole Night and the UNOH Southern Slam, and the Dollar General 300. Just tell them Warren sent you over to have some fun.
Concord, North Carolina (Sept. 26, 2013) – Ladies start your engines! The girls of NASCAR are set to race 25 laps for charity during the third annual Better Half Dash on October 10 at the Charlotte Motor Speedway. The last two events saw Jacquelyn Butler walk away with the prized six-foot pink trophy in 2011. Last year the wife of NASCAR driver Travis Pastrana, Lyn-z Pastrana, drove to victory during the second annual Better Half Dash. This year last seasons champion indicates she is looking forward to repeating her success at Charlotte.
The ladies of NASCAR are set to run down the track in North Carolina just before the NASCAR Sprint Cup racers head out on the track to see who can do the fastest lap on Bojangles’ Pole Night. The ladies of NASCAR will drive U.S. Legend Cars International Banderos around the frontstretch quarter-mile for bragging rights and charities like Motor Racing Outreach and Speedway Children’s Charities.
Below you can check out which ladies are set to drive during the 2013 Better Half Dash.
Wendy Venturini, motorsports analyst for Fox Sports 1
Lyn-z Pastrana, wife of NASCAR driver Travis Pastrana
Kristen Yeley, wife of NASCAR driver J.J. Yeley
Michelle Gilliland, wife of NASCAR driver David Gilliland
Ashley Stremme, wife of NASCAR driver David Stremme
Heidi Stoddard, wife of NASCAR team owner Frank Stoddard
Jessica Park, wife of NASCAR driver Steve Park
Gina Cope, wife of NASCAR crew chief Ernie Cope
Amy Gordon, wife of NASCAR crew chief Todd Gordon
Melanie Self, a representative of Motor Racing Outreach
The better half of the team of Pastrana, Lyn-z is a sports professional, being a eight-time X Games medalist, and keeps her trophy from last year in their bedroom. She apparently likes her big pink trophy and expectations are for Lyn-z to be very competitive during the 2013 Better Half Dash.
Better Half Dash defending champion and eight-time X Games medalist, Pastrana is no stranger to winning, and she has a special fondness for her six-foot pink Better Half Dash trophy. “It’s actually sitting in our bedroom. None of Travis’ trophies are in our bedroom,” Pastrana said. “I’ve never gotten a trophy like that ever in all my action sports.” “It’s definitely a really fun experience,” Pastrana said. “It’s cool to get to know some of the other wives and bring the community together a little bit more.”
The starting positions for the 2013 Better Half Dash will be determined by qualifying on October 7, 2013, at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Race enthusiasts hoping to lend a hand to their favorite driver can show up to add their support, since the driver collecting the most donations will be in front of the field heading to the green flag. You can also help the charities each driver is helping by donating a few dollars in their name by visiting www.go2mro.com/betterhalfdash.
Race fans can also have a little fun watching their favorite drivers act as crew chiefs and spotters during the 2013 Better Half Dash. The husbands will be in the pit taking care of the girls’ cars, but aren’t allowed to make any engine, chassis or suspension changes.
The lady that walks away with the 2013 Better Half Dash Championship will be given $10,000. $5,000 she can hand out to her favorite charities, while the other $5,000 will be given to Speedway Children’s Charities and Motor Racing Outreach.
This weekend the NASCAR Sprint series will be at Dover International Speedway. Ford racing fans are looking forward to another great run on this track for Greg Biffle, who always seems to run well at this venue.
Greg Biffle is currently fifty in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series standings as we head to Dover International Speedway this weekend for the AAA 400. We asked him if he would drop by the infield media center after his practice session to talk about his chances of driving his way to the Chase championship in the No. 16 3M Ford Fusion.
Greg looked pretty fast on the track during the practice session
“What are your thoughts on the race this weekend?”
Greg Biffle “It’s been a great track for us, although as of late we’ve struggled a little bit here as an organization. We’re looking forward to turning that around like we’ve been able to do at Richmond and some of the short tracks we’ve been a lot better on as of late. We targeted this place to be a place we need to improve at and I feel that so far we’ve been a little bit better than we had been in the spring time here. That gives me a lot of confidence for the rest of the weekend and what we’re able to do with the car tomorrow.”
“Some think the Chase is really a three-man race this year. What are your thoughts on making it a four-man race? You always seem to have success during the Chase.”
Biffle “The Chase, from what I understand, is made up of 10 races and to be two races into the Chase and say it’s a three-man race already, to me, seems silly as to why somebody would want to put themselves in that position and say it’s a three-man race. Obviously, you don’t have anything on the line. It’s not like we’re making a wager in Vegas that it’s a three-man race. It’s somebody’s opinion and everybody is entitled to their own opinion, but I can’t imagine with eight races to go that somebody would be willing to say, ‘Oh, this is a three-man race.’ Take for instance last week, we finished third and moved up six spots in the points to fifth. I don’t know how one would say it’s a three-man race. Now, if Kenseth goes on and wins the title does that mean it’s a three-man race or does that mean it’s a one-man race? I don’t know. I just think there are more than three cars in this thing right now. Now, if we get past Talladega and there are four races to go or three races to go, I could see that. But they could break for three races in a row and maybe not even go to Vegas and not even be in the top 10. So I’d say it’s a little early is all I was getting at. I wouldn’t be the one putting my name on the line to say there are only three cars in this hunt right now. I wasn’t necessarily saying that for the 16 team. I wasn’t making the case that it’s not a three-man race because of us, I wouldn’t count out Carl Edwards or any of those other guys that are right there in the hunt. Kasey Kahne, Kevin Harvick, I wouldn’t be counting those guys out just yet is all I was saying. I wasn’t saying it just because of our case of one race we finished third and moved to fifth in points, that wasn’t the point I was making.”
“Ford racing hasn’t won a Chase in quite awhile. Are there any common reasons you can think of that would have caused this during the last decade? Do you feel a lot of added pressure, because of this, to win the championship this year?”
Biffle “I can’t really answer why we haven’t won a title. You look at Carl and Carl tied for the points championship. It doesn’t get any close than that and in 2005 we finished under the old point system 35 points behind Tony with a major hiccup with three races to go. Potentially, with not much in history changed, we’ve got two championships right there. Some teams have probably done a little better job than we have and you look at Matt Kenseth for example. He’s got seven wins on the season. That might indicate some of the reasons why they’ve got more championships than we’ve got. We’ve still got a little bit more work to do. We’ve come a tremendously long way and I think we’re fairly competitive right now.”
There have been people who have suggested you Ford racers haven’t always garnered the attention other drivers get, even though you have showed pretty good, finishing in the top five year after year. Do you feel these comments are warranted?
Biffle “I think that’s just historically the way it’s been. You talk about the guys that are having success and how great it is. That’s sort of been the way it is. Am I surprised they’re not talking about Carl? A little bit. Am I surprised they’re not talking about the 16? Not really because we tend to slide a little bit under the radar all the time anyway, so it doesn’t bother me. It gives you motivation to do well and compete every week and try to get what you can. Like I always said before, if you’re winning races or you win the championship, they have to talk about you so put yourself in that position – put yourself in the position Matt is and they’re gonna be talking about you.”
Would you rather be in the position Matt was in? Can you think of any particular reason Matt didn’t have consistent success during his run with Roush?
Biffle “That’s a hard one. I couldn’t pinpoint any particular reason why, but the other thing is I don’t mind flying a little under the radar. It’s a little less pressure sometimes.”
How does it feel to have a teammate in the Chase? What things do you share with each other? How do you compete against each other?
“Carl and I have a lot of respect for each other. We had an incident earlier in the season at Michigan where the whole organization sat down and I think we understand each other and appreciate each other’s abilities a lot more since that meeting and we kind of do what we can to help one another that doesn’t hurt yourself and that’s what came out of that meeting in Sonoma after the Michigan race and that’s the way we’ve really handled it since then. Carl and I are parked next to each other in the garage and we’re talking about our cars and competition and how our car is in race trim versus qualifying trim, so we share everything and try to help one another with what we can.”