Ft. Worth, T.X. (April 13th, 2013) – Greg Biffle overcame a 35th-place starting position and a pit road speeding penalty to earn a fourth-place finish at Texas Motor Speedway. Biffle was one of the fastest cars in testing on Thursday, but had a hard time finding the perfect race setup in practice Friday. During the race, the team made huge gains on handling before a pit road speeding penalty sent them to the back. Biffle battled back to earn a top-five finish and moved up to fourth in the point standings.
“It was a tough night,” said Biffle. “Our car definitely wasn’t as good as it was last year here in the spring, but we battled back. I got a pit road speeding penalty. I don’t know what happened there. I had to start at the tail-end of the longest line behind the wave-arounds, so that made it a tough night to get back to fourth, but my guys did a great job. They got me back up there. If it wasn’t for them I wouldn’t be standing here.”
Biffle led the way in testing on Thursday at Texas with a fast 3M Ford. That was followed up with some strong runs in practice on Friday, but a less than ideal early draw in qualifying, combined with a tight lap, resulted in a disappointing 35th-place qualifying effort for Biffle.
Biffle may have started in the back, but he didn’t stay there long. Despite having a loose handling Ford, he maneuvered his way through the field and just ten laps in he had advanced 11 positions. The team knew they had their work cut out to fix the handling on the 3M Ford and took big adjustment swings on each stop with shim, track bar and wedge adjustments.
By lap 87 Biffle cracked the top 10, but the loose handling condition continued to get worse. Under caution for debris on lap 224 Biffle pitted for four tires, fuel and a wedge adjustment. A fast pit stop by the 3M Pit Bulls had Biffle up to sixth, but a pit road speeding penalty sent him to the tail end of the longest line.
Biffle restarted 19th and as he worked his way through lapped traffic, the cars that counted for position pulled further away. As the field was cycling through their final round of green flag stops a much needed caution came out on the track. The caution was the break Biffle needed and he pitted for four tires, fuel and a left-rear wedge adjustment. Biffle restarted ninth on lap 290 and was up to fifth when the final caution came out on lap 313.
Tires mean everything at Texas, so the field came down pit road under caution. Biffle took four tires, fuel and an air pressure adjustment. The 3M Pit Bulls gained another position with a fast pit stop, setting Biffle up fourth for the restart. In the closing laps the 3M Ford was a little bit tight, but Biffle held on for a fourth-place finish.
Kyle Busch swept the Texas race weekend by following up his Nationwide win Friday night with a win. Martin Truex Jr. finished a hard-fought second-place, while Biffle’s teammate Carl Edwards finished just ahead of him in third. Fellow Ford driver Joey Logano rounded out the top five. The Sprint Cup Series heads west to Kansas next weekend for the STP 400. Pre-race coverage beings at 12:30pm ET on Fox.
1.5-mile Kansas Speedway
Kansas City, K.S.
Sunday, April 21, 2013