GREG BIFFLE -60-B.A.S.S./Charter Communications Ford Taurus (Qualified 1st) "We've been talking about that, practicing in the morning tomorrow. I really feel like practicing in the morning tomorrow with the NEXTEL Cup car is probably going to...
GREG BIFFLE -60-B.A.S.S./Charter Communications Ford Taurus (Qualified 1st)
"We've been talking about that, practicing in the morning tomorrow. I really feel like practicing in the morning tomorrow with the NEXTEL Cup car is probably going to help us for night race on Sunday night because it's going to be cool in temperature and the track conditions may be closer to what we're really going to have in the evening on Sunday. It's kind of a guess, so it's a possibility, but at the same time, it will probably get you warmed up for the Busch race, I guess. We can't really make any changes on our Busch cars after NEXTEL Cup practice; they won't really let us do that. The cars are a fair amount different anyway, so this Happy Hour here is going to be best determining thing for us."
TALK ABOUT YOUR LAP. DID YOU GET EVERYTHING OUT OF IT?
"I really did. It was a great lap for our Ford. Brad and the guys did a great job getting it ready. I was a little bit tight, a little bit tight and they kept making some small changes on the car. We were concerned with what the weather was going to do; this place changes so fast. I was nervous. Right before we went out, it got hot and I thought we were done; our chance at the pole was gone because it is so temperature sensitive here. It warmed up. It was a 111 when Kasey went and it was 123 when we went, and that's a pretty big swing in track temperature. It must have suited my handling of my race car because the thing was perfect. The lap was absolutely perfect, right across the bottom in one and two, and down here in three and four is where I got all of my speed. I drove it in there pretty far and it cut to the bottom, and I was right back to the gas earlier than I had been ever before in a qualifying run. The car, Brad and Al (Tully) and all of the guys just got the car just perfect for me. When you have a perfect car it's easy to drive a fast lap."
"I've been questioning myself with that because we're kinda out of the top 10 in points. Our opportunity to make the top 10 in the NEXTEL Cup points is kinda deteriorated because of the mechanical failures we've had leading up to this point in the season. And, the loose wheel was kinda the straw that broke the camel's back at Richmond. We were running fourth. We just passed Jeff Gordon for fourth and I had to pit for a loose wheel and ended up finishing two laps down. It's hurt us in points. I should have taken the engine, but I'm concerned with the longevity of the engines. It's not proven yet. It's a brand new piece. Nobody knows whether it makes 600 miles. Nobody will know whether it will make 300 miles. I really don't want to fall out of the race just to test something. Certainly there is an advantage to it; you're going to have more power than everybody else, or all of the other teammates. Of course, I don't know about the rest of the field. I'm certainly probably not going to have more power than everybody in the field. So there is an advantage there, but the risk to take that advantage is probably greater than I wanted to do in the 600. Plus, it's our home race track and I don't want to fall out of the race here under the lights. The Charlotte race is a popular race, and it's fun to race in the Coco-Cola 600. That's basically in a nutshell why I didn't want to do it. I'll take it for Dover and some of those other places where the races aren't as long, but certainly didn't want to take it here."
"It doesn't matter to me. I was just making a wisecrack when I didn't get one for The Winston. Kurt Busch, I was just kinda giving him an excuse to jack my wheels off the ground in the straightaway. It really doesn't affect me how they distribute the engines, but I'll be more than happy to run one the rest of the season after this race. Unless, of course, they break. Unless we have some failures immediately, then maybe I'll shy away from that. Of course, you have to keep in mind, that's how we make a living is finishing races, so that's important to us."
"I really like this track Busch racing. I don't do as good here in the NEXTEL Cup car. I haven't had the race car I think I need here, but I've always had a really good Busch. Joe Nemechek gave me a great car to drive here last year. Eric Phillips was the crew chief; the guys did a great job. It was the only race I ran here last year, the Busch race and won it, the fall race. I think I won here in a Busch car in 2002 as well. I really like running here. It's fun to run here in the Busch cars. It's a great race track for them, these types of race tracks. I just wish I could get my NEXTEL Cup car more like my Busch car."
"I guess half and half. Not that I don't like racing every week, but we've had two weekends off this season in the NEXTEL Cup season and both weekends I've gone and raced the Busch car and blown up and fell out of the race. That tends to not make a guy feel real good about doing it. You feel, 'Geez, why did I waste my time off to come and do this?' That kind of disappointed me, but I certainly don't regret taking the challenge of racing both series the whole year. Ironically enough, we go to Nazareth and fall out of the race there toward the end. It kind of wears on you when you have failures like that. It gets you frustrated anyway."
"It does change your line some. It's getting bumpier back there; maybe the track is settling a little bit. But, I've noticed it upsets the car a little more getting into that corner, but it's kinda neat with the race track having bumps or dips or whatever else because it makes each race track have its own characteristics. But, it does change the way you drive it a little bit. You have to be a little more cautious over those bumps back there it seems like. It's hard to notice much of a change in the race track, but we do see some."
"I don't think so. I think a lot of what it is is the car itself, the body and the chassis. Our cars today are so aerodynamically dependent. If you can get a Busch car to go fast and drive around here and be decent, there's no reason why you can't get a NEXTEL Cup car, too. You don't drive them that much different. You drive them some different, but not that much different. I had this discussion with Kevin Harvick and a bunch of other people about it, and they said, 'Oh, my NEXTEL Cup car is just pinned to the race track and it drives so much better.' I'm thinking what am I missing because my Busch car drives pretty good like their Busch car does, but my NEXTEL Cup cars doesn't drive anything like what they're describing, the differences. It's a balancing act. It's getting a good race car and that's a lot of it."
WHAT CAN YOU SAY ABOUT YOUR FUTURE WITH ROUSH RACING?
"At this time I can't really talk about it. I wish I could, but right now I'd rather not discuss what we've got going right now."
HOW LONG IS YOUR CONTRACT?
"That's kind of up for discussion as well. All of that contractual stuff and what's going on, and everything that is happening, we're working on it. We're focused on the race team and winning races and making the sponsors happy and trying to move forward into the future. As soon as we get all of our differences ironed out, I'm sure we'll be more than happy to talk about it."
IS THERE A POSSIBILITY YOU WILL LEAVE ROUSH RACING BEFORE THE YEAR'S END?
"No, there's not a possibility for that at all."