Biffle hoping that another Michigan win locks him into Chase

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Greg Biffle is hoping to pull off a Michigan sweep this weekend that might be enough to get him into the Chase for the Sprint Cup.

Back in June, Biffle gave Ford its historic 1,000th NASCAR victory at MIS, where he’s won four times in his Cup career. But for much of the summer, he’s been hovering around the cutoff line for the Chase, which takes in the Top 10 in the Cup standings plus two Wild Cards that have the most wins out of those drivers in positions 11-20.

Since his win at MIS, Biffle has only collected two Top-10 finishes in the last seven races, and with just four more to go before the Chase begins, the pressure will be on to string together solid results starting this weekend in the Pure Michigan 400. He has the winning car from June as his backup, but will utilize a new chassis as his primary.

“I’m looking forward to Michigan; it would be three in a row if I can pull off another win,” he said in a team statement. “I feel like one more win would lock us into the Chase. Michigan is one of my favorite tracks; it’s a big fast place and has lots of room to race.

“There is always a lot of strategy going on. Fuel mileage and pit stops are very important. We ran better at Pocono and we think we have a chance to win three in a row.”

Biffle sits ninth in the standings but is only two points ahead of 10th-place Martin Truex Jr. going into this weekend.

Ricciardo set to see Dale Jr.’s final Texas ride in two weeks (VIDEO)

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We’ve written before about Daniel Ricciardo’s love of Dale Earnhardt and his love of the No. 3, which Ricciardo has selected as his permanent number for the duration of his Formula 1 career. And additionally, Dale Earnhardt Jr. has offered up the opportunity that one day Ricciardo could race a JR Motorsports car in NASCAR Xfinity Series competition, and Ricciardo has said he’d be up for it.

And although Earnhardt Jr. has only used the No. 3 on a handful of occasions in his career in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, Ricciardo knows how much the number means to the NASCAR veteran as he prepares for his final few starts in the Cup Series the tail-end of this year.

After the Mexican Grand Prix next week, Ricciardo is set to stay in North America for the off-week between the Mexican and Brazilian Grands Prix.

In that break, he said he’ll see Earnhardt Jr. in person at the Cup race at Texas Motor Speedway (Sunday, Nov. 5, 2 p.m. ET, NBCSN) to ensure he gets to see him before he retires from full-time competition.

Ricciardo explained his planning during Thursday’s pre-race edition of the NBC Sports Group original digital series Paddock Pass, speaking to NBCSN’s Will Buxton at the United States Grand Prix at Circuit of The Americas in Austin.

“Well I’ll see him for the first time in Dallas. I’m gonna go to the NASCAR race in two weeks time at Texas Motor Speedway,” Ricciardo told NBCSN.

“Yeah, so, I gotta see him race before he hangs up the helmet.

“The Earnhardt family is a huge name in motorsport, not only in America but all over the world. Yeah I wish him well.”

Ricciardo is also optimistic he’ll get the chance to do a helmet swap with Earnhardt Jr. at the event.

“Hopefully I get to see him perform well in Texas. I’m gonna try to do a helmet swap with him. We’ll see how we go.”

Stay tuned for more on this over the coming weeks.