Greg Biffle all held a Q&A session after Friday's practice session for this weekend's Sylvania 300 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. GREG BIFFLE -- No. 16 Dish Network Ford Fusion YOUR THOUGHTS ON THE CHASE. "I'm certainly glad to get the...
Greg Biffle all held a Q&A session after Friday's practice session for this weekend's Sylvania 300 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
GREG BIFFLE -- No. 16 Dish Network Ford Fusion
YOUR THOUGHTS ON THE CHASE. "I'm certainly glad to get the 16 car and our team back in the chase this year. I missed it a couple of years so it's great to get back in. I was a little nervous about this race track until we got on the race track today. The car is running really well, so I'm excited about that. I'm just ready for 10 weeks of battling it out."
CAN JAMIE AND DAVID BE TEST PLATFORMS FOR YOU GUYS? "Yeah, I think so. Just the same as it's always been for the past few years, we've been able to rely on those guys for information -- everybody in the group. We can rely on them for looking outside the box, for a little bit of stuff. Usually, somebody is always kind of experimenting so we're always paying attention, but definitely having a couple of teammates not in can maybe be a slight advantage."
IS GETTING OFF TO A GOOD START JUST AS IMPORTANT AS WINNING THIE FIRST RACE OR TWO? "Yeah, I think so. It can certainly be a confidence-builder, if anything. You know, to get off to a good start -- you feel really good about it. With those stats, I hope I don't win Sunday (joking). It's always nice to be in Victory Lane, but we're gonna do what we can and certainly we want to get off to a good start and certainly this weekend so far we're off to a pretty good start."
WHEN DID IT CHANGE THAT GUYS NOW FEEL YOU HAVE TO WIN RACES IN THE CHASE TO WIN THE TITLE? "I think it changed last year. We see Jeff Gordon have a five-point-some average and didn't win the title, so that gives you an idea of how tough this thing has become and this new car. The new car has certainly tightened the field up, so the reality is you're gonna have to be winning races. I wouldn't say you have to win races, but you're gonna have to finish better than fifth -- a fifth-place average to win -- so certainly you can be second five times and a bunch of thirds and fourths and win the title, but it's gonna take better than a 5.4 or whatever it was average to win the title."
DOES THE FACT KYLE HAS WON AND BEEN IN THE TOP FIVE SO MUCH ADD TO THAT FEELING? "Yeah, I mean that's something all of us have looked at is how many wins Jimmie Johnson has every year in the chase and how good he's run, what Kyle's done and what Carl's done recently, so we certainly know that you're gonna have to perform. We know that and we're ready for that. We're gonna do the best we can."
HOW DO YOU APPROACH TALLADEGA SAFELY? "That's hard to do. I tell the story over and over again. I was running third or fourth and the 10 car flew across my hood upside-down coming off turn two, so I thought I was in safe territory being at the front of the field and only one row of cars on the outside of us -- we were two wide -- and he flew across the hood upside-down. It didn't look like Days of Thunder, but Talladega Nights, where he could look out his window net right at me. But it never ceases to amaze me what can happen there. I don't know how I finished Daytona this year. We were all crammed together and my tires were off the ground. I think my front and back tires were off the ground at the end of the backstretch, guys shoving on each other and we're all beating off of each other and going crazy, but it's luck of the draw -- right place at the right time, keep your dart going forward and just hope for that checkered flag and hope to be the highest because anybody can get caught up in something."
THE ONE SEED HAS ONLY WON THE TITLE ONCE. DOES THAT GIVE YOU GUYS HOPE? "Yeah, it does. I think so. He's had a tremendous amount of success, Kyle has, so a lot of times we see that momentum typically shift throughout the season. He has not had that yet, obviously, so maybe these last 10 we'll see it shift a little bit, but we'll just have to wait and see."
CAN YOU THINK OF WHERE A WIN GOT AWAY FROM YOU? ONE OF THOSE RACES THAT JUST STICKS WITH YOU? "There are a bunch of those -- mistakes that you've made behind the wheel or mechanical issues you've had. Probably this season the most recent would be Darlington. We had a fantastic car. Carl Edwards had a good statement earlier, Kyle does have a number of wins but Darlington we went out of the race. It looked like we had him beat fairly decently and at Atlanta Carl had that race won and went out of that race and Kyle won that race, so there have been a few races on the other hand that Kyle's picked up that somebody else has gone out of -- not taking anything away from him, but certainly it can go both ways. I've been on both sides of that thing. The losses eat at you more than the ones that you just happen to get by chance."
HOW HAS THE CHASE CHANGED THINGS AS YOU APPROACH THE SEASON? "A lot has changed getting to the chase. I think the sport has just become more competitive altogether. It seems like it's harder to get in the chase and, as you can tell, it's hard when you get in the chase. Like last year, a fifth-place average finish didn't win it. So the teams are just getting better and better and better. We don't see any mechanical failures. We don't see people making mistakes or accidents happening. What it does is it forces everybody to be better. It forces me to be better behind the wheel on Sunday to not ever make a mistake -- to run as hard as I can. Everybody keeps upping their game and upping their game and the tighter and tighter it gets, the more competitive it becomes."
HOW HAVE YOU GOTTEN BETTER? "I think we've gotten better as a team on pit road. Greg and I communicating. I've been really, really smart on the race track. I've really tried to analyze pit road and predict and execute the best I can. What angle getting into the pit box? How much brake to use? You've got to polish every last opportunity that there is."
THIS IS THE FOURTH RACE WITH THIS CAR ON THIS TRACK. HOW DOES IT COMPARE? "It seems like this track I see a little bit of difference because the old car here, we were a threat for the win all the time. We had a couple of seconds and thirds and fourths and top fives anyway. I remember racing Matt for third at the end of the first chase race in '05, but we haven't been as good in the new car here and I think it's just us or me. We haven't been as good as a team, but they do drive different. There's not much to compare the two together, but they do act different on this race track. We just have to keep working on this new car and get it to go as good as we can."
THERE ARE 12 DRIVERS REPRESENTING FOUR TEAMS. WHAT DOES THAT SAY ABOUT THE SPORT? "I think it's just a fact of the numbers. You've got more technology, more testing. That gets spread across the group. Your average is better. If you do the math, the guys that have more cars have a better average -- not necessarily a better average of getting in, but they have a better average of getting it right. If me and Carl go to Milwaukee and test for two days, the other three teams benefit from that. And then when they go and test at Nashville, we get the benefit of that. I think that's what makes the multi-car teams better than the single-car teams and that's never gonna change no matter how the testing policy is because you're always gonna be able to exchange information across, whether you've got three cars or four cars. These organizations have been building and building over years. Gibbs only has three cars, but they're very good about execution and learning and they've got three good drivers. They're able to dial that in and polish that."
NOBODY HAS BEEN ABLE TO TEST KANSAS THIS YEAR. WILL THAT BE AN X-FACTOR RACE? "A little bit, but not as much as you think. This new car, I keep going back to that, the thing acts so similar to about everywhere we go. We'll be able to take something we used at some other race track -- Chicago or wherever -- and really be real close to it. And it probably won't take us long to get up to speed. These cars, there's so little adjustability. The thing is to get the splitter down on the track so it doesn't hit, stays as low as it can, and get the balance front to back. We can't move fenders. There's not a lot we can do. We pretty much already know rolling it off the truck exactly what we're gonna need there, or we've got a dang good idea."
WHAT IS YOUR TESTING SCHEDULE LIKE FOR THE CHASE? "I think we have two or three tests planned. One is an open test at Charlotte, but I think we're talking about going to one more track and testing other than that, or possibly two, so that's what we're planning on for the rest of the season."
-credit: ford racing