DAYTONA -- Ford Motor Co. turned in a strong performance in the Daytona 500, placing three cars in the top 10 in the season-opening NASCAR Sprint Cup race, which was delayed 2 hours and 25 minutes to repair a pothole in the racing line in Turn 2.
Greg Biffle led the way for the Blue Oval Boys, with a third-place finish in the No. 16 3M Ford Fusion out of the Roush Fenway Racing stables. Biffle was one of seven Ford drivers to lead laps in Sunday's race, pacing the field for 27 laps.
Biffle led the field when the first attempt at a green-white-checkered finish was made, but was passed by Kevin Harvick prior to the second green-white-checkered attempt. Biffle finished behind his former teammate, race-winner Jamie McMurray, and Dale Earnhardt, who charged from 10th to second on the final lap.
All in all, though, Biffle was pleased to earn his career-best Daytona 500 finish. It was a great day for the 3M Ford Fusion, he said. The best car Ive really had here at Daytona in quite some time, probably the best car since I sat on the pole in 2004. The car drove really, really good. There was the middle part of the race there where I lost a little track position, but really just ran in the top six the entire day once I got there top eight. Pit stops were phenomenal, again.
Defending Daytona 500 winner Matt Kenseth finished eighth in the No. 17 Crown Royal Fusion, just in front of the No. 99 Aflac Ford of expectant father Carl Edwards.
In addition, Paul Menard matched his best career finish with a 13th in his first drive with Richard Petty Motorsports.
All in all, Ford Motor Co. has earned high marks during Daytona Speedweeks said Jamie Allison, director, Ford North America Motorsports.
This year at Daytona Ford Motor Co. has seen the following:
Ford qualified all 13 of its NASCAR Sprint Cup Fusions for the Daytona 500, up from nine last year. Ford was the only manufacturer to qualify all of its cars entered in the 500.
Kasey Kahne won one of the Gatorade Duel Daytona 500 qualifying races on Thursday and finished second in the Budweiser Shootout last Saturday night.
Carl Edwards finished second in the season-opening DRIVE4COPD 300 NASCAR Nationwide Series race.
Jason White qualified a Ford F-150 on the pole for the NextEra Energy Resources 250 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race.
A 2011 Ford Mustang will pace the Daytona 500, the first Ford product to do so in 40 years.
If you can't be optimistic at this part of the season, I don't know when you can be, said Allison.
In addition to Ford's flagship team, Roush Fenway Racing, this year the four-car Richard Petty Motorsports team has joined the Blue Oval Boys, as has the three-car Front Row Motorsports with Yates Racing.
Now we have numbers on our side. And the depth of the numbers the addition of Kasey Kahne, AJ Allmendinger, Elliott Sadler and Paul Menard. And then we have Bill Elliott, a past champion who's always there for Ford, and Front Row.
We have a lot of teams who believe in what we do, believe in the cause of the Ford power and the Roush-Yates leadership there. And it's showing up.