Forget March Madness: Bring on Greg Biffle's Bristol Badness

Mary Jo BuchananSenior Writer IMarch 22, 2009

BRISTOL, TN - MARCH 21:  Greg Biffle, driver of the #16 3M Ford, stands in the garage area during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Food City 500 at Bristol Motor Speedway on March 21, 2009 in Bristol, Tennessee.  (Photo by Jerry Markland/Getty Images for NASCAR)

While March Madness is all the rage for basketball fans nationwide, NASCAR fans gathered for their very own version of madness—the spring race at Bristol Motor Speedway.  

Although there were no brackets involved, there were plenty of rivalries and guarantees that tempers would surely flare at this most famous "coliseum."

For one driver, the madness began before he ever set foot on the race track. Greg Biffle had fully intended to drive both races at Bristol: the Nationwide and Cup races.

But that was not meant to be. Biffle slipped off his boat after a fishing trip, injuring his ribs.

"We came back to the dock and the boat was drifting out a bit, and one guy had the front corner and I jumped out," said Biffle. 

"The platform must have been wet and when I jumped over, it shot my foot out underneath me, turned me around backwards and put me right on my side and on my back on the edge of the boat."

With bruised ribs and significant soreness, Biffle decided to sit out the Nationwide race at Bristol. He conceded his ride to Matt Kenseth, who brought Biffle's car in for a fourth-place finish.

In spite of Biffle's sore ribs, especially when he climbed in and out of his race car, Greg managed to get through both practices and Happy Hour. He was even optimistic that he could get through the beating and banging at Bristol to achieve a good race finish.

But the madness and the badness just kept coming at Biffle. After a mediocre run, Biffle's engine let go and he blew up, forcing his quick exit from the Food City 500 race.

Biffle seemed incredulous, shaking his head in wonderment at the engine failure. 

"No one ever blows up at Bristol," he said, trying to make sense of it all.

To add insult to injury to his Bristol weekend, Biffle finished in 39th place in the race due to the engine failure. His weekend went from bad to worse, as the race finish dropped him eight positions in the points standings, from 10th to 18th position.

Biffle's bad Bristol experience literally dropped him out of the top 12 in the standings, leaving him out of the championship chase for now. After the weekend, Biffle was not only physically sore from his rib injury but emotionally "sore" as well.

So, forget the basketball madness and take some pity on Biffle's Bristol badness.  He and his team can only hope that they will be the Cinderella team at next week's short-track adventure in Martinsville.

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