Two teams on the opposite ends of the Chase spectrum tested this afternoon on the 1.5-mile Texas Motor Speedway.
Team Penske’s duo of Brad Keselowski and Joey Logano joined Roush Fenway Racing’s trio of Carl Edwards, Greg Biffle, and Ricky Stenhouse Jr. for the session, which was open to the public.
But the fate of RFR’s two Chasers, Edwards and Biffle, remains in doubt. Going into this Sunday’s Challenger Round finale at Dover, Edwards sits eighth at just eight points over the cutoff while Biffle is 14th at six points behind.
Both of them need to be in the Top 12 after Dover to join the Penske pair in the Contender Round.
Today, Edwards acknowledged that Roush Fenway’s decision to test on the 1.5-mile Fort Worth oval was “kind of a risk” since he’s not yet locked in.
“…This race is obviously not for a while and we’ve got other things to focus on,” he said to TMS. “But we do feel like things that we find here at Texas could apply at Dover, Kansas, Charlotte, all the mile-and-a-half [tracks in the Chase].”
Biffle chimed in: “It is critical and that is why we are here testing. Trying to figure out our program for these mile-and-a-halves and a lot of times when you find speed at these places that transfers to shorter tracks as well. We are working hard to try and find some speed.”
Meanwhile, Logano got back to work just one day after taking home the lobster in New Hampshire.
“That’s how we got to do it,” said Logano, who defeated Jeff Gordon in green-white-checkered to win at Texas in April. “We got to keep fighting hard until the end of this Chase.
“This was planned before we went to Loudon. [It is] great we were able to get the win, but we flew down here last night – got here around midnight and got ready for the test today.”
Texas will host the second race in the Eliminator Round in November, but while Logano said that his team’s presence at TMS fit their style of always looking ahead, he’s not about to slack off at Dover’s “Monster Mile.”
“We still want to go up there and have a shot at winning it,” he said. “The fact that we’re in the next round doesn’t make us just say ‘We’re taking an off weekend this week and focusing on the next one.’
“We need to keep that momentum going. We want to go out there and win races. We want to keep this wave rolling as long as we can. So that means we just keep doing what we’ve been doing all year, focus on one track at a time, get prepared for it and execute the plan when we get there.”