Races [?] that Cheez-It is scheduled to be the primary sponsor in 2016:
Las Vegas - 3/6
Phoenix - 3/13
Richmond - 4/24
Charlotte - 5/20-21; Sprint Showdown & All-Star Race
Charlotte - 5/29
the rest TBA
Races [?] that KFC is scheduled to be the primary sponsor in 2016:
Daytona, Sprint Unlimited - 2/13
Daytona - 2/21
Kentucky - 7/9
the rest TBA
Races that Roush Performance has been the primary sponsor in 2016:
Atlanta - 2/28
Martinsville - 4/3
Bristol - 4/17
Races that Ford EcoBoost has been the primary sponsor in 2016:
Auto Club - 3/20
Talladega - 5/1
Kansas - 5/7
Pocono - 6/5
Michigan - 6/12
Races that Kleen Performance has been the primary sponsor in 2016:
Texas - 4/9
Dover - 5/15
Contract Status: Driver: 2017; Sponsors: unknown
Drivers hopeful new rules mean better racing at Michigan: Optimism remains high for the lower downforce rules package in place for Sunday's FireKeepers Casino 400 at Michigan International Speedway. "Well, I think that we made a pretty good step forward with the move we made from the 2015 to the 2016 package," said Scott Miller, NASCAR vice president of competition. "For aerodynamics in making more competitive racing and closer competition, more passes for the lead. In most cases all the metrics we looked at have been better in those areas. So this is just another step toward, again, creating closer competition and great racing that the fans and the media and everybody wants to see. We want to see that really bad, and I think this direction has been something that's been embraced by the drivers, and actually we've worked together with them to land here and try this for this year as a potential way to move forward with closer competition."
Friday's practice and qualifying sessions saw higher speeds through both the corners and down the straightaways with average speeds topping 200 mph. However, while reaction has been mostly favorable, there is still much to be observed before gauging whether the rules are successfully reaching goals.
"And as far as today, I think it's difficult to visually see the difference, but when you look at the data from the cars, the speed trace is significantly different, the mid corner speeds are down a lot, the entry speeds are up a little," Miller explained. "And from some of the driver comments, having to use the brakes pretty hard and maybe even thinking about needing brake cooling and everything at a big track like this is a departure from where we've been before, and we're really hoping that those things actually produce a really, really good race on Sunday."
But as of now, it's still very much a guessing game. "What I'm anticipating is hopefully a lot of slipping and sliding; a loss of momentum, and the ability to stack up some guys and to get a big run from third, fourth, fifth on back," Kurt Busch said. "That's what we hope we see and that we don't have a leader that just gets out there and then we're not able to chase him down. And then the restarts are going to be that much more exciting because of the lack of downforce and how stable will the cars be side-by-side? Nobody knows that yet."(Motor Racing Network)
AND NASCAR Sprint Cup owner Jack Roush was not happy with the series' decision to use new rules to the aerodynamic package to further reduce downforce and sideforce for this weekend's FireKeepers Casino 400 race at Michigan International Speedway. "It's different from what it was, no doubt," said the 74-year-old Roush of the new rules package. "Nobody had been on the race track with this package before. Everybody is struggling to find out where the sensitive adjustments are. The car has not been as loose as we expected. We thought that the problem would be flying out from underneath of you, loose on exit and entry. The entry has been a little bit of a problem, but the exit and center has not been a bigger problem than normal." Roush's three-car team of Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (12th), Trevor Bayne (13th) and Greg Biffle (18th) all qualified outside the top-10 Friday.(Detroit News)(6-12-2016)
Ford working with Roush to improve: Ford Performance boss Dave Pericak is convinced Roush Fenway Racing will soon return to victory lane. The legendary Ford NASCAR team has not won a race since [Sonoma in 2014]. Team owner Jack Roush and his current Cup drivers Biffle, Trevor Bayne and Ricky Stenhouse Jr. are as dedicated as ever to turning things around, said Pericak, who took over as global director of Ford Performance from Jamie Allison last year. "I've been in the job for over a year and I've said we've been going to fix Roush," said Pericak, chief engineer of the Ford Mustang from 2008-2015. "The cars this year have speed in them but the team has had trouble executing on pit road. I think they've definitely ... shown a trend of improvement."
"As it is today, Jack Roush is not happy about the situation," said Pericak, who will leave Tuesday for France to oversee the Ford GT40's return to the 24 Hours of Le Mans sports car classic. "But he's 100% committed to improving the team and his spirits are high."
Pericak will be at MIS [Friday] to observe NASCAR's new lower down force package for the track. "It will be a wait and see thing," said Pericak of the aerodynamic package which NASCAR believes will promote closer and better racing with more passing. "I think we are headed in the right direction and we're hoping for better racing. At the end of the day, I think it allows drivers to drive the car." Ford drivers have been using a state-of-the-art simulator in Charlotte, N.C., running the lower down force package for MIS.(Detroit Free Press)(6-10-2016)
Fill in crew chiefs for Pocono UPDATE: Following the suspension of three Sprint Cup crew chiefs following the Charlotte race, two of the teams have named their replacements:
Ernie Cope will fill in for Randall Burnett as crew chief for the #47 team of A.J. Allmendinger. Burnett is serving a one race suspension.
Stewart-Haas Racing engineer John Klausmeier will serve as crew chief for #41-Kurt Busch while Tony Gibson serves his one race suspension.
However: A Roush Fenway Racing spokesman said Thursday afternoon that the team still was evaluating whether to appeal the two-race suspension of crew chief Brian Pattie after Greg Biffle's #16 Ford failed postrace inspection from the Coke 600.(NBC Sports)(6-3-2016)
UPDATE: Robbie Reiser will serve as crew chief for Biffle at Pocono.(6-3-2016)
RFR Fan Day, Friday May 26th: Jack Roush, Bubba Wallace, Ryan Reed and Gray Gaulding. NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers Trevor Bayne, Greg Biffle, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and Chris Buescher are scheduled to appear at RFR Fan Day in Concord, NC on Thursday, May 26. Autograph sessions will kick off at 10 a.m. with Jack Roush and the Roush Fenway NASCAR XFINITY Series drivers, Bubba Wallace, Ryan Reed and Gray Gaulding. NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers Trevor Bayne, Greg Biffle, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and Chris Buescher will sign autographs at 11:15 a.m. Autograph session tickets will be on a first-come, first-served basis, beginning at 8 a.m. RFR is located at 4600 Roush Place, Concord.(5-18-2016)
Roush not likely to move back to 4 cars soon: Now that the organization is headed back in the right direction when it comes to their performance, Roush president Steve Newmark said Sunday the focus is on the immediate future of fighting for a Chase berth and not what their driver lineup is going to be. With three drivers running full-time in the XFINITY Series, three more under their banner in Cup, and Chris Buescher on loan to Front Row Motorsports, decisions will soon have to be made of who is running where. When the company felt [Buescher] was ready to be in Cup instead of running a third year in the XFINITY Series, they coordinated with Bob Jenkins and Front Row, who Buescher was already familiar with, to compete in their camp. In a perfect world, admitted Newmark, Roush will get him back under their roof sooner rather than later. "There's a combination of factors that will go into that," he said. "Ideally, we'll have him in one of our cars in the next few years, but I think the focus right now is we got to get him running better in the 34." Under NASCAR's new ownership rules of only being able to run four full-time cars, plus the addition of the Charter System this year, Roush has been in a box. The chance of ever going back to four full-time cars looks slim, but Newmark won't close the door on any possibility. "Jack would rather run 10 cars; he would run as many cars as he would be enabled," Newmark joked. "It really will depend exactly on the driver, sponsorship, and then now you also have to have a charter, so I don't think we would run a (fourth) full-time, but you never know."(Popular Speed)(5-16-2016)
Roush Yates already prepping for Stewart-Haas addition: The addition of Stewart-Haas Racing to Ford in 2017 will mean an increased workload for Roush Yates Engines, the company that supplies Ford power to teams in all three of NASCAR's national series. But it means much more than the 60 or so additional engines the supplier will have to produce, according to CEO Doug Yates. "For us, that's four more top-notch cars, opportunities to win races and championships," Yates said Saturday at Atlanta Motor Speedway. "But the work starts now because we've got to get ready for next year." Yates, son of famed engine builder and former team owner Robert Yates, said his company currently has approximately 250 engines in its fleet for Sprint Cup teams. "We'll start building them up but next year, with four cars will mean about 60 more engines... Today we build about 750 Cup, XFINITY and Truck engines a year. At our road race shop we build about 250 a year. Obviously we will have to add some people. We feel like we have a good process, we just have to add volume." The benefit, he said, is it will be "a good opportunity to allow us to bring on more resources for the R&D side, more testing, more engineers. Just add depth to every department. It's exciting.(NASCAR.com)(2-28-2016)
Roush Performance on the #16 at Atlanta: This weekend, for the first time this season, Roush Fenway Racing's Greg Biffle and the #16 Ford Fusion will carry the ROUSH Performance colors in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway. ROUSH Performance visited victory lane with 2015 NASCAR XFINITY Series Champion Chris Buescher twice last season, at Iowa Speedway and Dover International Speedway. ROUSH Performance Products is a premier supplier best known for its line of high-performance Mustang powertrain parts, including superchargers, cold air intakes, and exhaust kits. The list goes on to include a full line of wheels, tires, interior, body components, graphics, service parts, accessories, drivetrain, cooling upgrades, and more. ROUSH Performance also offers performance upgrade packages for the Ford F-150 and Focus. In addition to appearing on Biffle's #16 Fusion in the NSCS, the #6 Mustang, driven by Bubba Wallace in the NASCAR XFINITY Series, will again carry the ROUSH Performance colors at select races during the 2016 season. Biffle displayed the ROUSH Performance livery three occasions last season, earning a best finish of fifth at Pocono Raceway in August.(Roush Performance), see an image of the car on the #16 team paint schemes page.(2-24-2016)
Roush cars forced to change rear gears: During the first practice, #6-Trevor Bayne and #16-Greg Biffle experienced rear gear issues. The rear gears were replaced and both Bayne and Biffle will start from the rear of the first Can-Am Duel on Thursday.(Motorsport)(2-18-2016)
Biffle talks about Charter system and possible new contract: #16-Greg Biffle met with members of the media at Media Day at Daytona International Speedway on Tuesday, a few of the Q&A's:
Q) HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT THE NEW CHARTER SYSTEM?
Biffle: "I think it is good. I don't know a tremendous amount about it but I know bits and pieces and I think it gives owners and investors something to build upon over time. It gives them some value I think. I get all of those things because after all, if somebody wants something at the end of the day for their time and effort they put in that a charter system heads in that direction."
Q) DID IT REQUIRE RENEGOTIATION OF YOUR CONTRACT?
Biffle: We are still working on that. I haven't had a chance to sit down with our people yet. Our contracts were based around the old system so obviously the new system won't work around the old system so we have to figure out how that translates."
Q) WHAT DO YOU MAKE OF THE IMPACT THE CHARTER SYSTEM HAS HAD ON DRIVERS AS A WHOLE?
Biffle: "I think two things. This is just purely my opinion. I know they worked very hard on the charter system and spent a great deal of time on it and I believe it is a great thing for NASCAR and the teams and owners and investors across the board. The bad thing, and not by design, was that it got done - they worked all through Christmas and everything - but it got done two weeks before or a week before the season started and our contracts are built around the old system so now it is almost like that gets kicked out of the system and has to be redone or renegotiated or whatever. You have Daytona a week away and I will have to say also that I wasn't up on what all the changes were going to be and how it affected us. That is probably my fault. Until it was done did we know that it happened. I don't know if other drivers were privy on how it would go down. I knew it would change, and it isn't a bad thing, but the timing is more of an issue than anything."
Q) HAVE YOU HAD YOUR DEAL REDONE?
Biffle: "Not yet. Steve (Newmark) has bugged me a couple times that we need to sit down and go over it so that we can get it and we had media things and KFC commercials to shoot and I have been very busy doing stuff so we haven't had a chance to sit down yet. I think it is just a matter of economics or math. We are all going to want to keep our same deal, it will just be derived differently. It will be the same as it was just instead of coming from one column it will come from four but ultimately will be the same." Q) STEVE NEWMARK HAS TOLD YOU THAT YOU WILL GET PAID THE SAME AS LAST YEAR BUT JUST A DIFFERENT STRUCTURE BECAUSE THE PURSE IS DIFFERENT?
Biffle: "That is what I anticipate. He hasn't used those exact words but I don't think anybody is taking it as an opportunity to change driver contracts."
Q) HAVE YOU SEEN THE CHARTER SYSTEM, THE DEAL AND HOW IT DIVIDES UP THE MONEY DIFFERENTLY THAN BEFORE?
Q) SO THEY AREN'T GOING TO PUT PURSE WINNINGS IN BOX SCORES AFTER RACES ANYMORE. DID YOU EVER LOOK AT THAT?
Biffle: "Not really because it was really a phantom number because it had planned money or TV money or contingency money. You could look at it as a sea level type thing of what that race paid to win because there is some variance if you are going to Texas or Darlington or Michigan, there is a little variance, but I didn't look at it to try to figure out what I was going to get out of a certain thing."(Ford Performance)(2-16-2016)
February 14th Marks the Anniversary of Roush Fenway's entry into NASCAR: While across the world, Feb. 14th annually marks the celebration of St. Valentines Day, the date holds a different significance for Jack Roush and the Roush Fenway Racing team. It marks the anniversary of Roush's first foray into the world of NASCAR; his first race at the highest level of automobile racing and a day that would serve as the launch pad for one of the most successful organizations in professional sports history. Competing with a backup car not even built for a superspeedway, Roush and his newly formed team covered only 19 laps before overheating and finishing 41st in its debut Daytona 500 on Feb. 14, 1988. Humble beginnings for a team which 29 years later has accumulated a NASCAR record 322 wins and hoisted championships in all three of NASCAR's highest levels of competition.
"We wrecked our car in the twin qualifying race and had to run a car that was built for a smaller track," said Roush of the day. "We went with what we had and of course did not yield the results we would have liked for your intro to NASCAR that day."
"We made the race on time," said driver Mark Martin, who piloted the #6 Stroh's Ford Thunderbird in Roush Fenway's inaugural season and held the ride for the next 19 seasons. "Then we got wrecked in the Twin-125's and we didn't have a backup speedway car, so we used the Atlanta car for the race. We didn't last 20 laps."
The results would quickly improve however, with Roush and Martin winning a pole that season and earning 10 top-10 finishes. The next season Roush Fenway won six poles, earning 19 top-10 finishes and its first win in 1989, breaking through to the win column in the fall at Rockingham. Roush Fenway would go on to earn its first NASCAR championship in 2000 and its first Cup championship in 2003. Ironically, 25 years later Roush would earn his historic 300th NASCAR [Cup, XFINITY & Trucks] victory in the 2012 Daytona 500; the same event his car had lasted only 19 laps a quarter of a century earlier. Today, Roush's teams have competed in 5,579 NASCAR events, holding the record for most NASCAR wins, most NASCAR wins in the Nationwide Series and most NASCAR wins in the Truck Series.(Roush Fenway Racing)(2-15-2016)
Stewart hospitalized for a back injury UPDATE: #14-Tony Stewart is being hospitalized for a back injury he suffered in a non-racing accident while driving an all-terrain vehicle, Stewart-Haas Racing announced Tuesday. Stewart is awake, alert and able to move his extremities, according to a statement from Stewart-Haas Racing spokesman Mike Arning, who said the accident happened Sunday on the West Coast and wouldn't specify where Stewart is hospitalized. Fox Sports reports that Stewart flipped a sand buggy outside of San Diego and was airlifted to a hospital. Arning said the team is not expected to make any further announcements about Stewart's condition until Thursday afternoon. Stewart was in Arizona on Saturday night at the Barrett-Jackson auction in Scottsdale and was interviewed on live television from the event. "We have received word from Stewart-Haas Racing of Tony Stewart's accident and injury," NASCAR chairman Brian France said. "On behalf of everyone at NASCAR, I wish Tony a full recovery and look forward to seeing him back in our sport when he's ready to return."(ESPN)(2-2-2016)
UPDATE: Greg Biffle was among a group riding with Tony Stewart in the sand dunes of Southern California when Stewart suffered a back injury on Sunday, he told SiriusXM's NASCAR channel on Wednesday night. Biffle confirmed to Sirius he was in Stewart's group, though he "wasn't near what went on" and didn't see exactly what happened. "We were kind of all riding as a group," Biffle told Sirius. "We started kind of hearing bits and pieces that he hurt his back. That's all we knew. I do know the people that helped him ... (said) he was walking and moving all of his extremities, but he was in a lot of pain."(USA Today)(2-4-2016)
KFC to Partner with Greg Biffle in 2016: Roush Fenway Racing has announced a multi-race partnership with KFC as a primary partner for Greg Biffle and his #16 Sprint Cup Series team during the 2016 season. The partnership will kick off at Daytona Speedweeks and include primary placement in the famed Daytona 500 and Sprint Unlimited All-Star events at Daytona. The partnership in Daytona will feature KFC's recently launched line of smoky and crispy 'Nashville Hot' chicken, which comes just in time for the launch of the 2016 NASCAR season. Nashville Hot is available on KFC's first ever tailgate platter; perfect for tailgating at events, watching sports and hosting group parties.
"It's definitely exciting to have KFC on the car," said two-time NASCAR Champion Biffle. "I don't think there is a more iconic brand out there; who didn't grow up loving KFC? Their new spicy, smoky and crispy Nashville Hot Chicken is now available nationwide - which I am very excited about - and I can't wait to get to Daytona, enjoy a couple of tailgate platters with the team and hopefully put the Colonel in victory lane at our biggest race of the season."
"We are very happy to be teaming with Greg Biffle and Roush Fenway Racing and especially to partner with them for the Daytona 500," said Kevin Hochman, KFC U.S. CMO. "Greg and Roush Fenway have a strong tradition of winning at Daytona, and we can't think of a better way to launch our new Nashville Hot Chicken than at NASCAR's biggest race of the season where we will be promoting the biggest thing in spicy chicken since Buffalo wings."
"We are proud to welcome KFC to the Roush Fenway Racing family with Greg and the #16 team," said Roush Fenway president Steve Newmark. "We know they will be a great partner going forward in 2016 and look forward to a strong partnership launch as the season kicks off in Daytona."(Roush Fenway Racing), see an image of the KFC scheme on the #16 Team Schemes page.(1-20-2016)
Biffle helps unveil site of planned Lake Norman pet center: #16-Greg Biffle and fellow Friends of the Animals board members on Saturday unveiled the new 2.5-acre site of their planned pet education and adoption center on Lake Norman, NC. Biffle's foundation is a lead supporter of the 11,500-square-foot center, which will house a boarding area for adoptable dogs and cats, a medical clinic and education center. Low-cost spay and neuter services will be phased in after the center is open, as well as educational programming for students. The center is scheduled to be completed by year's end on Templeton Road, between Interstate 77 exits 31 and 33 in southern Iredell County. "It's tragic that 77 dogs and cats a day are euthanized in the greater Lake Norman region," Biffle said. "When we started dreaming of this project, it was close to 100. And although the rate of euthanasia has gone down over the years, the numbers killed are still staggering."(Charlotte Observer)(1-20-2016)
SRI Performance Purchases Roush Yates Performance Products: Roush Yates Performance Products announced that it has reached an agreement with SRI Performance in which SRI will now own, operate, and manage the performance parts distribution business previously owned and operated by Roush Yates Performance Products. With this new agreement, beginning January 1, 2016, SRI will operate out of two locations in Mooresville, NC. Each location will represent a distinctly different product offering.(roushyatesparts.com)(1-5-2016)
Roush Fenway Racing crew chief assignments for 2016: Roush Fenway Racing has set its crew chief lineup for 2016, adding Brian Pattie to call the shots for veteran Greg Biffle and the #16 Ford team next year. Pattie first confirmed the news on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio on Wednesday night. A Roush Fenway Racing representative confirmed the new-look crew chief roster Thursday for the NASCAR Sprint Cup and XFINITY Series. Pattie served as crew chief to Clint Bowyer with Michael Waltrip Racing's #15 Toyota for most of the last four seasons, switching to David Ragan and MWR's #55 team after the first Pocono race of 2015. The Waltrip-owned team ceased operation after the 2015 season.
Pattie replaces Matt Puccia, who had been paired with Biffle since the midway point of the 2011 season. Bob Osborne returns as crew chief for the #6 Ford of Trevor Bayne. Nick Sandler is back with the #17 team and driver Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
On the XFINITY Series side, Puccia shifts to the #6 team and driver Darrell Wallace Jr. Phil Gould, paired last season with Elliott Sadler and RFR's #1 team, will join forces with driver Ryan Reed next year on the #16.(NASCAR.com)(12-18-2015)
Roush Fenway Racing Bolsters Competition Effort: Roush Fenway Racing has bolstered its competitive efforts with three key personnel additions to its NASCAR team. Kurt Romberg, Dr. Kent Day and Vojin Jaksic have each taken on high-level roles within the team that captured its eighth NASCAR championship in 2015. "It takes great talent to win in this sport and we are very pleased with the additions we have made on the competition front," said team owner Jack Roush. "We recognize the importance of putting the appropriate personnel into place, as we continue our relentless pursuit to put the best and most competitive race teams on the track."
Kurt Romberg, who spent the last 15 years heading up aerodynamics at Hendrick Motorsports, joins the team as the Technical Director of Aerodynamics. Romberg worked with General Motors and Petty Enterprises before becoming the chief aerodynamicist at Hendrick.
Dr. Kent Day will serve as Manager of Simulation. Day, who holds a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from Clemson University, brings over two decades of experience to Roush Fenway and has held technical director positions with Team Penske and RCR and most recently specialized in vehicle dynamics at MWR.
Vojin Jaksic returns to Roush Fenway Racing as the research and development/special projects manager after serving in similar positions at MWR and Joe Gibbs Racing. Jaksic previously worked at Roush Fenway Racing from 2005 until 2011.
The additions are part of a strategic plan to expand organizational capabilities and follows the hiring of industry veterans Mark McArdle and Kevin Kidd to lead engineering and Sprint Cup competition last season.(Roush Fenway Racing)(12-15-2015)
Roush Fenway Racing restructures: Change is coming to Roush Fenway Racing. After the dissolution of the #1 XFinity Series team following Elliott Sadler's departure, RFR "right-sized" its NXS program on Monday. However, despite the release of a significant number of employees, others will be hired as RFR restructures its organization. Kent Day, who holds a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from Clemson University and most recently worked at MWR following his tenures at Richard Childress Racing as technical director and Penske Racing as chief engineer. Day will oversee Roush's simulation program. Kurt Romberg has also been recruited by RFR. Romberg was the chief aerodynamicist at Hendrick Motorsports for 15 years. He worked at General Motors and Petty Enterprises prior to joining HMS. Someone with knowledge of the situation told motorsport.com the net loss of personnel would likely be 25 workers.(Motorsport)(11-24-2015)
Ortho will not sponsor Biffle or a team in 2016 UPDATE: Scotts Miracle-Gro has confirmed that its Ortho pest-control brand will not return next season as the primary sponsor of Roush Fenway Racing's #16 Ford driven by Greg Biffle, and the brand will instead sit out the year as a NASCAR team sponsor. Scotts Dir of Marketing Promotions & Communications Chris Strunk in a statement said, "We evaluate our sponsorship portfolio on an annual basis and have decided not to renew our partnership agreement with Roush Fenway Racing. Roush Fenway and Greg Biffle have been terrific partners, and we wish them the best. We are extremely appreciative of their participation and support of the Ortho brand." RFR declined comment. The brand this season sponsored about half of Biffle's 36 Sprint Cup Series races, but will not be on the car for the Sunday's finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway (Bleacher Report will be on the car). Ortho was one of the main brands to step in and fill the void when 3M left after a nearly 10-year relationship with Biffle, switching to Jeff Gordon's #24. Prior to deploying its Ortho brand to the #16, the Ohio-based Scotts had sponsored other RFR cars from 2005-2011.(Sports Business Daily)(11-20-2015)
UPDATE: The Ortho brand of Scotts Miracle-Gro will not return as primary sponsor of Greg Biffle's #16 Roush Fenway Racing Ford in 2016, the organization and team confirmed Friday. "We have enjoyed a long-standing and greatly productive working relationship with Ortho and the Scotts' brand," RFR President Steve Newmark said in a statement. "Over the course of the last decade they -- at different times -- have been able to successfully activate various marketing platforms through our partnership. They had great success activating around Greg and the No. 16 team and I think all of us enjoyed the 'What's Buggin' Biffle' promotion. However, their marketing strategy for '16 will take them in a different direction. We would of course welcome working with them again in the future and look forward to that possibility."(NASCAR.com)(11-22-2015)
Brian Pattie to replace Puccia as Biffle's crew chief: Brian Pattie will take over crew chief duties on the #16 Roush Fenway Racing Ford with Greg Biffle in 2016. The 40-year-old Zephyrhills, Florida native has worked as a crew chief for Michael Waltrip Racing for the last four seasons. Pattie started his NASCAR career with fellow Floridian Joe Nemechek in 1994. He led a variety of NEMCO teams to seven Xfinity Series wins in four years. Although Pattie left NEMCO for a short stint with Hendrick Motorsports in 1996, he returned in 2003 to work as a team manager and crew chief with Randy LaJoie and Nemechek. He moved to Ganassi Racing in 2004 and won NXS races with Jamie McMurray and Reed Sorenson. In 2008, Pattie was reassigned to the #42 Target team midway through the season as the third crew chief to work with former Formula 1 driver Juan Pablo Montoya. Together, Pattie and Montoya won one race, seven poles and posted 16 top fives and 39 top-10 finishes. Pattie also guided the team to the 2009 Chase for the Sprint Cup - Montoya's only appearance in the NASCAR post-season. Pattie declined comment on his plans for next season. In 2012, Pattie was recruited by Michael Waltrip Racing where he was assigned to Clint Bowyer. The pair won three Sprint Cup races their first season together and finished second in the Chase. However, after their third winless season together, Pattie was moved from the #15 team to the #55 Toyota with David Ragan after 16 races. Sources said Puccia will be reassigned within the company.(Motorsport)(10-26-2015)
Biffle not setting a timeline for retirement: With both #24-Jeff Gordon and #14-Tony Stewart -- two of NASCAR's biggest stars and most accomplished drivers of all time -- set to call it quits from Sprint Cup competition by the end of 2016, it's only natural for folks to wonder who else among NASCAR's 40-and-over club might follow suit in the near future. Greg Biffle, who turns 46 in December, is older than both Gordon and Stewart, and is the oldest active driver in NASCAR's top series. So will he be the next one to hang it up? While it's certainly possible, don't count on it. Biffle said his contract with Roush Fenway Racing runs through the end of the 2017 season and he has every intention to honor it. "The Biff" admits he isn't sure what his future holds beyond '17, but at least for now, he's not ready or willing to put a timetable on how much longer he'll keep driving in the Sprint Cup Series. "I've got my own plan. I'm enjoying driving these cars and love what I do," said Biffle, "I feel like we've got still something left to accomplish. I'm looking forward to the new body that we're going to get, and the downforce (with the 2016 rules package) and the changes we've made in the company. I want to see Roush Fenway winning races when I hang my helmet up for the last time, and I think we can do that. I know we can do that."(Fox Sports)(10-18-2015)
Congrats....baby: Greg Biffle's crew chief, Matt Puccia, announced on his twitter: "Alyssa Puccia and I want to welcome Kennedy Harper Puccia to the world! Thanks everybody for all the kind words!
AND Matt Puccia, crew chief for Roush Fenway Racing driver Greg Biffle, wasn't at Dover International Speedway on Friday. Then again, with rain washing out all track activity at the Monster Mile, there wasn't a compelling reason for Puccia to be there. But Puccia had much more important business at hand-witnessing the birth of daughter Kennedy Harper Puccia in Mooresville, N.C., where he drove from Dover on Thursday night after wife Alyssa went into labor. RFR Sprint Cup team manager Kevin Kidd filled in for Puccia during two abbreviated Sprint Cup practice sessions on Saturday. It will be Puccia's decision whether to return for Sunday's Sprint Cup race at the Monster Mile. "I tried to leave them at peace and let them get through the baby being born, but since then, we've talked a couple of times, and it will probably be a Sunday morning game-time decision, and I'm leaving it completely in Matt's hands," Kidd said. "If he wants to come up and do the race tomorrow, then we'll certainly welcome him. As a company, we'd love to have in back, but we also want to be respectful and do the right thing as an employer and give him some time to be with his family right now."(NASCAR Wire Service)(10-3-2015)
Biffle gets a new spotter: Roush Fenway Racing's #16-Greg Biffle likely needs a win in the next four races to make the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, but he'll have to do so while working with a new spotter. According to RFR, Jason Reiner will replace Joel Edmonds as Biffle's spotter this weekend at Michigan. Reiner has spotted for Chase Elliott. "It is not one of the changes I was looking for, but it was time to head down a different path for the company," Biffle said. "Like I said, it was not preferable to start with a new spotter, especially with Bristol next weekend and four races before the Chase, but it is a business and we will work for it the best we can to get up to speed with listening to a new guy up top."(NASCAR.com)(8-16-2015)
Mark Martin no longer working with Roush Fenway UPDATE: NASCAR Sprint Cup Series veteran Mark Martin, who was hired last July as a driver development coach for Roush Fenway Racing, is no longer with the organization. Asked Friday on Twitter if he would be working with RFR's crop of young drivers in the upcoming season, Martin responded, simply, "No." Martin, who drove for Roush Fenway from 1988-2006 -- the vast majority of his Sprint Cup career -- said at the time of his hiring as a driver development coach that he was happy to be reuniting with the organization where he earned 35 of his 40 career Sprint Cup wins. It was announced in mid-January that Martin, 56, has joined forces with late model dirt-racing legend Scott Bloomquist to field two entries in the Lucas Oil Late Model Championship in 2015. Bloomquist and up-and-coming driver Jared Landers will drive the two team cars, respectively, with both carrying sponsorship from Batesville, Ark.-based Mark Martin Automotive Group.(FoxSports)(2-7-2015)
UPDATE: Mark Martin explained in a tweet Saturday morning why he no longer is working in a driver development role with Roush Fenway Racing. Martin tweeted: "I didn't want to go to the races. I've done enough of that for now. Except for dirt track." Martin answered a fan's question Friday on Twitter confirming that he was no longer serving as a coach for Roush. Saturday, he answered another fan's question as to why he wasn't coaching Roush's drivers.(NBC Sports)(2-8-2015)
Congrats: Matt Puccia crew chief for #16 Greg Biffle married Alyssa Abbott on 12/13/14 at St. Mark's Church, Huntersville, NC, they are honeymooning in Hawaii.(12-20-2014)
Yates Denies Rumors of Roush Fenway Buyout: Roush Yates Engines CEO Doug Yates responded yesterday (Dec 4th) to rumors that he will replace Jack Roush at the helm of Roush Fenway Racing when Roush steps down in the near future. "Jack is committed to NASCAR racing," said Yates, son of legendary NASCAR engine builder and team owner Robert Yates. "He loves two things besides his family; racing and flying airplanes. He is not planning to stop the racing part, anyway. I know that for a fact." Yates admitted, however, that he is interested in following his father into the ownership ranks one day. "It's flattering to hear my name out there (in the rumor mill) and if the right situation came along, I'd love to carry on what my dad started and what he accomplished. But right now, my focus is on building great engines for Ford Motor Company and making Ford and Roush proud. That's what I'm going to try to stick with and be focused on in the near future. Jack Roush is not going anywhere" he said, "...and one thing he's not going to do is quit before he gets (Roush Fenway Racing) back where he wants it." Yates also said Roush has been instrumental in his success as an engine builder, adding, "He's been really good to me... a lot like my dad. I've been so fortunate to learn and watch and be around him. He's taught me a lot."(Godfather Motorsports)(12-5-2014)
Biffle's new deal with Roush is for three years: #16-Greg Biffle spoke to the media Friday after practice in Pocono:
CAN YOU TALK ABOUT RE-SIGNING WITH ROUSH FENWAY?
"Every driver has opportunities and I was very thankful that I had plenty of opportunities. I was coming down to deciding what I was gonna do for the future from other teams and there were some interesting seats open and opportunities, but I think internally what happened is as I was deciding what I wanted to do for the future, I think Carl decided that he was gonna move on and then I needed to make a decision what I was gonna do. I've won over 55 races driving there and 19 Cup wins and I just felt like we can get this thing turned around, so I made the decision to stay and be the anchor for Roush Fenway, and do another three-year contract, regardless of sponsorship at that point. I made that commitment to stay and it's been a tough eight weeks since then.(Ford Racing)(8-2-2014)
Roush starting to scale back: Having achieved nearly everything he'd wanted in his racing career, [Jack Roush] the 71-year-old captain of industry prefers to revel in others' success in the dusk of his NASCAR career. "There aren't so many firsts left for me, but I've not lost my passion for competition or my desire to operate at the top of my game," the founder of Roush Fenway Racing told USA TODAY Sports. "I just look forward to enjoying vicariously the success of drivers winning their first race or championship, and the crew chiefs and engineers able to share in those firsts. It's less about me and more about being a parent or a grandparent to them."
Once the Sprint Cup Series' quintessential hands-on team owner, Roush quietly is moving toward the sidelines. After a quarter-century of owning stock-car teams that have 314 wins in NASCAR and two championships in its premier series, Roush still works seven days a week but doesn't set his alarm for dawn anymore. He no longer spends 90 minutes before every race tinkering with each of his cars' carburetors, which have been excised from stock-car racing by electronic fuel injection. The mechanical wizard ... has been marginalized somewhat by advances in technology. The survivor of two plane crashes has eased into a role he jokingly labels as public and human relations manager.
"I've gone from wanting to be the mechanic that I hoped everyone else would be to now I'm the point-and-grunt guy," Roush said with a laugh, "hopefully, I'll become less viable before I'm gone. The challenge is to give up the management and decision-making at the right time." Within the next five years, the plan is he won't attend every team meeting or race anymore, scaling back to spend more time with five grandchildren who range in age from 8 months to 12 years old.
"He's trying to empower the folks running the team on a daily basis," team president Steve Newmark said. "I suspect that is sometimes hard for him, but he's doing it of his own accord, which is great because you see a lot of patriarchs that hold on for too long and don't leave the company in a good state. He's focused very much on making sure the company continues regardless of the level of his involvement." So is there a clear plan for the enterprise once Roush steps away? "There's no written plan," Newmark said. "We'll welcome his leadership as long as we can get it."Read much more at USA Today.(7-11-2013)
Happy Hour Practice:
Friday, June 24, 2016, 6:30pm/et
TV: FoxSports1 6:30pm/et
Born in JUNE
24 Jim Bown, Frank Deiny, Ben Eklund, Samantha Ingerson, Josh Kirk, Kevin 'Bono' Manion, Riley Rice, Shanda Renee Shepherd, Hut Stricklin, Don White
25 Jim Hannigan, Joe Bessey, Alexis Stoddard, Shawn Warren
26 Lorin Ranier, Kevin Lepage, David Sisco, Steve Grissom, Mark Cronquist, Jorge Goeters
27 Johnny Benson Jr, Ricky Mast, Robby Reiser, Todd Drakulich, Elizabeth Anne Petty, Aaron Smith, Dwayne Moore
28 Junior Johnson, Kym Clarke, Mike Skinner, Rich Hubbs, Walter Smith, Scott Hewitt, Sean Murphy
29 Jeff Burton, Martin Truex Jr, Eddie Bierschwale, Jenna Fryer, Page Jones, Tim Petty, Josephine "Ricki" Hendrick
30 Sterling Marlin, Lyndon Amick, Don Miller, Blake Parrott, Allen Bestwick III, Ron Liddell, Chad Tigert, Troy Prince
Born in JULY
1 Mario 'the Gonz' Monzo, Ryan Mathews, David Caraviello, Shannon McGlamery
2 Richard Petty, Sam Hornish Jr., Kevin Henson, Robert Ingram, Bill Seifert
3 Larry Phillips, Jimmy Horton, Kimberle "Paige" Burton, Tyler Rader, Darlene DeRosa, Daniel Smith
4 The USA, Steve Addington, Susan Brewer
5 Bob Labonte, Delano Wood, Chris Golder
6 Todd Kluever, Caron Myers, Joe Dan Bailey, Gere Kennon, Heidi Bodine, Delma Cowart, Gwyn Staley
7 Dolores Adamczyk, Stevie Waltrip, Landon Cassill, DeLana Harvick, Stan Fox, Michelle Fizer, Nealie Stufflet, Eddie MacDonald(MA)
8 Leo Jackson, Keelan Harvick
9 Bon Scott, Stephen Witzke, Donnie Richeson, G.C. Spencer
10 Adam Petty, Brendan Gaughan, Gabi DiCarlo, Skip Jefferson, Jeff Curtis
11 Adam Alexander, Bobby Dotter, Bill Wilburn, James Mashburn, Don DeCecco
12 Benny Parsons, Rick Hendrick, Jim Baldwin, Tom Carey, Tommy Baldwin III, Eric Jones
13 Brad Parrott, Keith Almond, Cheech Marin
14 Jimmy Elledge, Derrick Finley, Jeff Patterson
15 Martha Earnhardt, Matthew Francis, Henry Benfield, Shawn Marie Marcis, Bob Marcis
16 Dakoda Armstrong, Ashlyn Newman, Phil Ditmars, Ed Negre, Wayne Anderson, Chandra Johnson, Jim Rathmann, D.J. Kennington
17 Hoyt Overbagh, Cameron Alice Hill, Eddie Dickerson, Joe Garone, Slick Poston, Monty Self
18 Glen Wood, Nick Ollila, Dan Glauz, Rick Hodges
19 Ray J. Evernham, Wayne Grubb, Brooks Bishop, Miles Bishop
20 Dr. Rose Mattioli, Chad Chaffin, Ronnie Silver, Pete Hamilton
21 Klaus Graf, Gerry Kulwicki, Dave Skog
23 Kurt Umscheid, Jenny Markle, Richie Evans, Buckshot Jones, Larry Wallace
25 Ernie Elliott, Bill 'the Hat Man' Brodrick, Cate Evernham, Joey Arrington, Kelly Punch, Shelby Howard, Jerry Hill, Tommy Britt, Frank Bonsignore
26 Buddy Arrington, Raymond Fox III, Rick Crawford, Rich Vogler, Randy MacDonald, Bill Baird, Jordan Garone, Rick Pigeon
27 Adriana Wells, Jeremy Flowers
28 Matt DiBenedetto, Tina Inman Hussey, Mary Quay
29 Bernie Bisciotti
30 Henry Ford, Robert Grey Allison, Ricky Sanders, Neil Bonnet
31 Kyle Larson, Bob Tomlinson, Louise Smith, Mike Alexander, Flossie Johnson