Greg Biffle, driver of the No. 16 National Guard/Subway Taurus, comes into this weekend's Allstate 400 at the Brickyard with five wins this season and a third-place spot in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series standings. He spoke about the...
Greg Biffle, driver of the No. 16 National Guard/Subway Taurus, comes into this weekend's Allstate 400 at the Brickyard with five wins this season and a third-place spot in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series standings. He spoke about the weekend earlier this afternoon during the rain delay at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
GREG BIFFLE - No. 16 National Guard/Subway Taurus
HOW HAS THIS TRACK SURFACE CHANGED SINCE LAST YEAR? "The race track has changed considerably. It had a lot of grip here during testing. We know it's not gonna have near as much grip when it gets to the race and you get all the rubber built up on the race track with a little bit of heat and the sun. So we know the race track is gonna become a little slicker and slow down a little bit, so those are gonna be some challenges that we're gonna have to address during the race, but we'll just keep after it and keep adjustability in the car and see what we can do."
WHERE ARE THERE COMPARISONS BETWEEN THE BRICKYARD AND OTHER TRACKS? "It really doesn't compare to anything we go to. You can compare it a little bit to Pocono because of the long straightaways, but that's about all there is as far as comparisons. Everything else is much different."
DID THE OFF WEEK COME AT A GOOD TIME FOR YOU AND YOUR TEAM? "Yeah, I think so. I think it came at a great time. It was a good week off for us. I think we caught up on some stuff that we needed to do. We didn't do really any testing or anything like that, so it was a nice time away from the race track."
WITH SUCH A LONG SEASON YOU'RE BOUND TO HAVE SOME UPS AND DOWNS. YOU'VE SLIPPED BEHIND TONY IN THE POINTS TO THIRD, SO WAS IT GOOD TO REGROUP FROM THAT STANDPOINT AS WELL? "I was hoping not to have a week off on bad terms, so to speak, but, really, I had to look at our Pocono finish as something we salvaged. We salvaged a finish out of that. We were gonna be sixth and were gonna gain points on Tony Stewart and were gonna gain a lot on the 48, and ended up having the tide turn with about eight to go. But we were deep in the twenties - 25th or 27th, somewhere in there - and ended up 17th, so it could have been a lot worse than it was. Only being 10 to 15 points behind Tony coming into Indy, I was able to accept that as our week off. I'm just looking forward to get back going again and try to get back on top."
FOR MUCH OF THE SEASON IT HAS BEEN JUST YOU AND JIMMIE JOHNSON AT THE TOP, BUT NOW TONY HAS JUMPED INTO THAT AS WELL. "Yeah, that's one person to keep an eye on and so is Kurt Busch. Here in about five or six races we're gonna have 10 guys to keep an eye on, so we'll just do the best we can. That's all we can do. If we get the best finishes we can, we can't control what other guys are gonna do and outcomes they're gonna have. One plus for us is that Tony did not run as good at Pocono as he had been running, so that was a sign that they struggled a little bit there. So did the 48, so that tells us that whatever they got hot on for a few weeks doesn't work everywhere, which is your fear -- they've got something that they're just gonna wipe us up very week now. They struggled bad in practice and we watched them. They qualified well and then ran mediocre, and so did we. We didn't have anything stellar there, so that was a little bit of confidence, if you will, that the playing field is still pretty level."
YOU MENTIONED CATCHING UP ON SOME THINGS DURING THE OFF WEEK. WHAT? "I mean it just kind of gives the guys a chance to get silly things - like getting the pit box organized the way they want, crash carts, giving us a little bit more time to get some stuff to the wind tunnel and starting on new chassis or what not - catch up on your road course stuff - kind of polish on things. It's not the rat race. It's just a chance to get some little pet peeve stuff done that you wanted to get done, but haven't had time to do."
YOU HAVE A BIG TRACK LIKE INDY THIS WEEKEND, THEN A ROAD COURSE IN WATKINS GLEN, FOLLOWED BY A FAST TRACK AT MICHIGAN AND THEN BRISTOL. IS IT SAFE TO SAY AUGUST IS THE MOST CRITICAL MONTH IN THE ENTIRE SEASON AS FAR AS THE CHAMPIONSHIP RUN? "Yes, for a lot of guys. This is a difficult place. The Glen next week will be a challenge for me and a lot of drivers, and then Michigan, and Bristol can be an either direction race track, too. Those are some valuable places coming up in the points that can make or break some of the guys trying to get in, and can put you into the chase a lot lower than you want to be. Everybody is conscious of all those things."