Greg Biffle and Carl Edwards have apparently toned down their post-race rhetoric against each other following Biffle’s win Sunday at Michigan International Speedway.
“We’re going to sit down and talk about it, just expectations, what can you do to help another competitor,” Biffle said during NASCAR’s weekly media teleconference call on Tuesday. “I’ve backed up to Carl before. He’s done the same for me.”
The Roush Fenway Racing teammates raised eyebrows within the organization and among fans when Edwards criticized Biffle, who had a dominating lead at that point with a three-second lead, for not slowing down to allow Edwards to close in on the rear of Biffle’s car to jar loose paper debris that was caught in the grill of Edwards’ Ford and was causing it to overheat.
“He ain’t our teammate,” Edwards bitterly said over his team radio after Biffle refused to fall back.
Biffle refused to slow down because Jimmie Johnson was closing in on him at the time and did not want to lose the lead to the five-time Sprint Cup champ.
When asked about Edwards’ comment afterward, Biffle replied, “It’s his (Edwards) job to help me.”
Biffle ultimately won for the fourth time at MIS, while Edwards fell from starting the race on the pole to finishing eighth.
According to several media reports, the two teammates discussed Sunday’s incident briefly during Monday’s weekly RFR organizational meeting and debriefing. They are expected to talk further on more of a one-on-one basis later this week, perhaps at Sonoma Raceway prior to this weekend’s race there.
“He was looking for every way we could work together as a team,” Biffle said Edwards told him during their brief talk on Monday.
Talk of a feud between the two drivers heated up after their verbal exchange at Michigan, but Biffle said Tuesday that their respective comments came in the heat of the moment and were taken out of context.
“We all have different reactions when we’re in the car or when we just get out of the car and our finish or result isn’t what we wanted because of a certain situation,” Biffle said. “I’ve done the same thing. In fact, there was something that I’ve been quoted saying as well that isn’t what I meant, but it’s what I said at the time.
“But I understand. I’ve been there. And sometimes things get taken out of context of what you actually meant and what you said. I understand that part of it.”
Biffle said Tuesday that he would have helped Edwards if he could, but there was too much to risk with Johnson hot on his tail.
“We want to work together at all costs, but we have to be reasonable about asking one another to do,” Biffle said. “When I got the message that Carl had paper on his grille — which I had paper on my grille too — I was looking for somebody as well. He was a long way behind us before we got the message to us and just didn’t feel that it was close enough to help him.”
Biffle isn’t the first Roush Fenway Racing teammate that Edwards has had a run-in with. He had several exchanges with now former teammate Matt Kenseth, including a near-fight between the two following a race in 2007.