Daytona Beach, Fla. (July 8, 2013) – Greg Biffle’s 3M Ford had a patriotic theme for the Fourth of July holiday weekend featuring the Statue of Liberty. The red, white and blue No. 16 3M Ford qualified 10th and ran up front until an unfortunate and untimely caution came. As Biffle made his way forward from the back he was tagged in the left front while avoiding another wreck. The 3M team never gave up and avoided multiple wrecks to ultimately finish 17th.
“I tell you, it was wild out there,” said Biffle. “We had really good track position running up front and then that caution came out on that pit cycle and got us to the back and we were just stuck back there. So I decided to stay back there for a little bit while I was there and then we started working our way up and got hit off of turn four and knocked the toe out. We struggled with speed a little bit the rest of the night, but we kept digging and got up there.”
The No. 16 3M Ford handled well in practice and in qualifying Biffle was able to earn the 10th starting position. In true restrictor-plate racing fashion, Biffle was shuffled forward and backwards before the field strung out single file.
Just 23 laps into the 160 lap event, the No. 27 of Paul Menard had engine issues on the track, bringing out the caution. Biffle pitted for two tires and fuel. The early caution was followed by a long green flag run, which led to green flag stops. Just before Biffle came in for service the caution came out. Many cars had already made their stops, so under caution Biffle pitted for four tires, fuel and a wedge adjustment.
Biffle restarted 15th but the field was getting dicey so he decided to drop to the back. On lap 118 Biffle decided to make his move to the front and a few short laps later the spinning car of Aric Almirola tagged the left front of the No. 16 car. The team pitted to fix the damage and kept Biffle on the lead lap.
The contact had knocked the toe out of the car, but Biffle did his best, even narrowly avoiding multiple wrecks. The race concluded with a green-white-checkered finish, in which the field wrecked at the start finish line. With the help of spotter Joel Edmonds, Biffle was able to salvage a 17th-place finish.
“We didn’t get hurt bad in the points and made it through Daytona,” said Biffle after the race. “We didn’t end up hitting the wall or anything like that, so we’re good.”
Jimmie Johnson swept both Daytona races this season. Tony Stewart, Kevin Harvick, Clint Bowyer and Michael Waltrip rounded out the top 10. The Sprint Cup Series heads to Loudon, N.H. next weekend for a Sunday afternoon racing in the backyard of Red Sox nation.
Camping World RV 301
1.06-mile New Hampshire Motor Speedway
Sunday, July 14, 2013