Speeds slowed dramatically at Michigan

Workers mount tougher left side Good Year Eagle tires brought from Charlotte for use in Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Quicken Loans 400 at Michigan International Speedway on June 16, 2012 in Brooklyn, Michigan. (Photo by John Harrelson/Getty Images for NASCAR)

The NASCAR Sprint Series won’t be racing anywhere near the speeds Sunday they have had at Michigan International Speedway.  After speeds for most of the field smashed through the 200 mile per hour barrier on the newly repaved 2 mile oval in the last few days, NASCAR and Goodyear reacted by bringing different  tires for Sunday’s race.

The reaction was less about the speed and more about the problems some teams were experiencing blistering issues.  NASCAR gave teams a rare extra practice session Saturday night with the new tires and the speeds were cut dramatically with Greg Biffle topping the charts with a speed of 195.647. The speed was a far cry from the 204.708 mile per hour speed Biffle put down in practice Friday.

“The tires are really hard, you can tell. It is giving up a lot of grip,” Biffle said. “It is kind of funny, you can hear the tires squealing when you first go out, before it builds temperature, you can feel it sliding on the race track. It slows the cars down and as it builds heat it actually starts to gain some of that grip back. I think the biggest thing with this tire that I remember is the first three laps off of the yellow as the hardest racing around other cars. The thing will just take off on you. That is the biggest thing we need to stay cautious of. After you get four or five laps in a run I think it will race pretty normal.” MORE>>>


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