BUSCH: Colorado Springs: Greg Biffle - NASCAR spotlight

Biffle has unfinished business in NASCAR Busch Series before making jump to NASCAR Winston Cup Series in 2003. DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (July 24, 2002) - Roush Racing recently announced Greg Biffle will join its NASCAR Winston Cup Series driver ...

Biffle has unfinished business in NASCAR Busch Series before making jump to NASCAR Winston Cup Series in 2003.

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (July 24, 2002) - Roush Racing recently announced Greg Biffle will join its NASCAR Winston Cup Series driver contingent in 2003, making this his second and final season in the NASCAR Busch Series, Grand National Division.

It may be characterized as a brief stay for Biffle, but he definitely is maximizing his time. Following a successful 2001 season when he was named the NASCAR Busch Series Raybestos Rookie of the Year, Biffle (No. 60 Grainger Ford) finds himself in position for the series' ultimate prize three races into the second half of the 34-event schedule.

Biffle, a 32-year-old from Vancouver, Wash., heads into Saturday's NetZero 250 at Pikes Peak International Raceway possessing the top spot in the championship race for the past three weeks. He dislodged a fellow former NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series champion, Jack Sprague (No. 24 NetZero Chevrolet), from the top position following a runner-up finish in the July event at Daytona and solidified his standing with an eighth-place finish at Chicago and a win last week at Gateway.

The win, his third of the season, extended his points lead to 72 over second-place Jason Keller (No. 57 Albertsons Ford), who leads the NASCAR Busch Series in wins with four, heading into the NetZero 250.

"I've always enjoyed racing at Pikes Peak," said Biffle, who will team with Mark Martin, Jeff Burton, Matt Kenseth and Kurt Busch for Roush next season in the NASCAR Winston Cup Series.

"It's an extremely nice facility, and the fans there always show a tremendous amount of enthusiasm when a NASCAR event comes to town. I've had a fair amount of success at the track over the last few years, and the Grainger team has been running strong in 2002, so I feel like we've got just as good a chance as any to go to Victory Lane on Saturday. This is probably my last race at Pikes Peak, at least for a while, so I'd really like to leave a winner."

Biffle has been on a tear since a 27th-place finish at Nazareth on May 19 dropped him to eighth in the championship and trailing by a season-high 262 points. Since then, he has posted seven top-three finishes in eight starts, including all three wins. His top-three miss came at Chicago, where he still finished a strong eighth. During that stretch, he also has led 475 of his series-leading 567 laps led.

He also has qualified well during the run, earning both of his Bud Poles and qualifying among the top 10 in all but one of those events.

"The Grainger team is very excited about our performance the last couple of months," Biffle said."We've been running like this all year, but earlier in the season we just had a lot of things happen to us. We were running in the top five at Daytona and Talladega and got taken out in accidents. We had a really good car at the first Nashville race and fell victim to a wreck as well. We were leading the race in New Hampshire and had the first engine failure in the five years I've been points racing with Roush, and we were headed for a possible win at Nazareth before getting caught up in that bad wreck with Jeff Purvis. Texas is really the only race that we were out to lunch on the setup (and finished 17th). Everywhere else we've been very competitive.

"Every team has their fair share of bad luck throughout the season, we just had ours all come at the beginning it seems like. Lately things have been going well, and the team is really clicking. This sort of feels like the kind of season we had the year we won the (NASCAR Craftsman) Truck championship in 2000. The season started out a little rocky, but we turned it around. I'm hoping we'll get the same end result this year."

Biffle, who has a series-leading 14 top-10 finishes in 20 starts, has also enjoyed success at Pikes Peak, both in the NASCAR Busch Series and NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series. He won the Pikes Peak race in 2000 en route to the NASCAR Craftsman Truck title and qualified fourth and finished fifth last year in the NASCAR Busch Series event.

"Pikes Peak has been pretty good to me in the past, and I'm hoping the generosity will continue this weekend," Biffle said."I was fortunate enough to win the Grainger.com 225 there in the Craftsman Truck Series during the 2000 season, and then we followed that up with a fifth-place performance in the Busch Series last year. Hopefully at the end of this one, the Grainger team will have recorded another solid finish that will assist us in our quest for the 2002 Busch Series Championship. If not, I'm still going to miss racing at the track, but I'll have lots of good memories to take with me."


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Drivers Jeff Burton , Matt Kenseth , Jason Keller , Greg Biffle , Kurt Busch , Jack Sprague , Jeff Purvis , Mark Martin