Greg Biffle, driver of the No. 16 National Guard/Subway Taurus, and Kurt Busch, driver of the No. 97 Sharpie/IRWIN Taurus, spoke before Thursday's practice session regarding last weekend's NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge. GREG BIFFLE - No. 16...
Greg Biffle, driver of the No. 16 National Guard/Subway Taurus, and Kurt Busch, driver of the No. 97 Sharpie/IRWIN Taurus, spoke before Thursday's practice session regarding last weekend's NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge.
GREG BIFFLE - No. 16 National Guard/Subway Taurus
SOME WONDERED WHY YOU GOT SO UPSET LAST WEEK IN A NON-POINTS RACE. "Well, I think getting wrecked on the straightaway by your teammate certainly would be something to set a guy off. That would be like your neighbor burning down your house by accident - you're gonna be upset. That would set a guy off and that's what it was. I was upset about it and it wasn't right for that to happen. We have five teammates, Childress has three and Hendrick has three or four, so it's bound to happen that teammates are gonna get in an accident together. Passing another teammate, you can get loose and take him out. That can very well happen and it's a thing in our sport that's gonna happen, but, hopefully, those incidents are few and far between and they're truly accidents. Getting turned around on a straightaway, that's a little tougher to swallow. Now if Matt got loose underneath me and took me out, he didn't mean to do. Accidents happen and we've got to move on to the next week, so that's what made this more difficult. Kurt and I have talked it over. We've discussed it and we're moving on. We've got to. We've got to worry about winning the 600 and not what happened last week."
WHAT DO YOU HAVE TO DO TO EARN HIS TRUST AND WHAT DOES HE HAVE TO DO TO EARN YOUR TRUST? "When you get in the race car and you buckle down and get ready to go, the only thing you can think about is what lap are we gonna pit on, how is the car gonna handle, how to adjust on it and to win the race. That's all you really focus on when you get in there. Everything else works itself out. When I see the 97 car in front of me or behind me, I'm not gonna think about what happened last week. It doesn't really happen like that. It's hard to put all that emotion behind you, but when you buckle in every week, it's a new week."
HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE THE EMOTION OF WHERE YOU LEFT THINGS? "He felt really bad about what happened. He wrecked a lot of race cars besides ours and he felt that he had more ability than what he showed there when he made contact with the back of our car. That's not what he had planned and that wasn't the outcome he had planned. Obviously, he misjudged by a lot and he's got to personally pay the price for that himself. I've been in that situation. I've made bad mistakes before and felt bad about it, but he's the guy that's got to live with it. Me, I was an innocent bystander and so were all the other cars. It's something we can't fix. We can't do anything about it. I can't do nothing about it. It's Kurt's problem. He's the one that has to live with what happened moving forward. There's nothing I can do about it. I don't need to retaliate against him. That's worse for me to tear up a good race car that I have. I'm gonna worry about winning races. He said he would cut me a break when he could, but I don't expect that. If I've got a faster car, I expect him to give me the room. If he's got a faster car, I'm gonna give Kurt the room. That's the way we've got to race. We've got to race as if last week didn't happen, otherwise we're gonna handicap ourselves going forward."
KURT BUSCH - No. 97 Sharpie/IRWIN Taurus
GREG SAID YOU GUYS SPOKE ABOUT LAST WEEK. "Yeah, we discussed things on the phone and that helped solidify things. It's been real easy to work through this because of how long I've known Biffle and with our relationship in the truck series and then moving it into the Cup deal. So we've got things ironed out. We're two gentlemen and now we're on to the next week."
HE SAID IT'S SOMETHING THAT WILL HAPPEN BETWEEN TEAMMATES AND YOU HAVE TO MOVE ON. 'Yeah, we're great teammates and that's what allowed us to do this quicker. It was just a stupid mistake on my part. The only thing that we can do is help yield to one another out on the track and just move on like normal teammates."
WHAT ABOUT THIS WEEKEND? "It's obviously a different race from any other race we run. It's 600 miles and you've got to build a great car underneath you because of how many changes the track goes through from daytime to nighttime and just being able to keep up with the race track, so it's tough."
WHAT KIND OF CHALLENGE IS THAT FOR YOU AS A DRIVER? "It's more of a mindset than anything. You just have to adjust to things that you can't see coming. You have to stay on your toes, but, yet, you have to stay on a pace for 600 miles and just stay calm and make sure you make the right decisions."
DOES FATIGUE COME INTO PLAY? "You hydrate well and do a nice regimen of working out and doing the right things that you can do as a driver and then the team helps keep you psyched up and pumped up throughout the race. I mean, 500 miles is almost the same as 600, but there is a little bit of a difference."
ROUSH RACING HAS HAD A LOT OF SUCCESS HERE. DOES THAT GIVE YOU CONFIDENCE? "We just have to do our job. We know we've got the tools to do it and I've got a great team behind me. We just have to work together as a team, just as Mark has done and Jeff and Kenseth in the past."