Greg Biffle threaded his MOOG Steering and Suspension-equipped No. 16 3M/National Breast Cancer Foundation Ford through a 20-car final-lap pileup to finish sixth in Sunday’s NASCAR Good Sam Roadside Assistance 500 at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway. Following the race, Biffle’s crew chief, Matt Puccia, picked up his second MOOG “Problem Solver of the Race” Award, as the No. 16 car improved by an event-best 0.079-second per lap over the final 95 laps.
Federal-Mogul’s MOOG “Problem Solver of the Race” and “Problem Solver of the Year” awards recognize the professionals whose work on pit road helps maximize their cars’ performance throughout each Sprint Cup race. The Problem Solver of the Race award is presented to the crew chief whose car posts the greatest improvement in average lap time over the second half of the race while finishing on the lead lap. The prestigious $100,000 MOOG Problem Solver of the Year Award goes to the crew chief with the most weekly MOOG wins throughout the season.
Biffle and the No. 16 car worked in a tandem draft to push Roush Fenway Racing teammate and eventual race winner Matt Kenseth (No. 17 Ford) toward the front of the field over the closing laps. As Biffle settled in for what appeared to be a relatively uneventful closing lap, the field around him disintegrated in one of Talladega’s classic “Big Ones.” The No. 16, which led six times for a total of 16 laps, sustained moderate damage but somehow steered through the carnage to finish sixth. It was Biffle’s second great save of the afternoon; he was forced onto the apron and turned sideways on Lap 173, yet was able to regain control of his MOOG-equipped car.
“Matt had the car handling great at the end of the day and that came in handy as Greg had a couple of close calls near the end,” said Federal-Mogul Motorsports Director Tim Nelson. “The 16 team deserves a lot of credit for helping Matt Kenseth get the win and it’s great to see them get some recognition in the form of Matt Puccia’s MOOG Problem Solver award.”
Puccia’s award did little, however, to break the deadlock at the top of the MOOG Problem Solver of the Year standings, where crew chiefs Steve Addington (No. 14 Chevrolet/Tony Stewart), Chad Johnston (No. 56 Toyota/Martin Truex Jr.) and Steve Letarte (#88 Chevrolet/Dale Earnhardt Jr.) share the lead with four weekly MOOG awards each. Chad Knaus (No. 48 Chevrolet/Jimmie Johnson) is in second place with three Problem Solver of the Race awards. The season-ending Chase for the Sprint Cup continues next Saturday at Charlottle Motor Speedway, Concord, N.C.
According to the company, MOOG Steering and Suspension components are the leading choice of automotive repair professionals and top crew chiefs and have helped drive an unprecedented 46 consecutive NASCAR Cup champions to victory.
For more information regarding MOOG steering and suspension components and the MOOG Problem Solver of the Race and Problem Solver of the Year awards, visit the brand’s technician-focused www.moogproblemsolver.com website or contact your MOOG supplier. To identify the right MOOG part for virtually any application, use the convenient, free www.FMe-cat.com electronic catalog.