Tag:Carl Edwards
Posted on: March 4, 2012 7:49 pm
Edited on: March 4, 2012 8:05 pm
 

Video: Newman wrecks after contact with Edwards

By Pete Pistone

Ryan Newman rallied back from a pit road penalty to get back into contention Sunday at Phoenix only to have contact with Carl Edwards send him into the wall.

The wreck didn't knock Newman out of the race, but the damage was bad enough to cost him a couple of laps and he wound up 21st. Edwards ran out of fuel on the final lap and finished 17th.





RYAN NEWMAN

"I’m 99 percent sure Carl Edwards didn’t do that on purpose, but I trusted him. Now he can’t trust me because there is a lot to be had and lost, we lost a lot today.  I don’t know how much he lost, but that’s not the point. I don’t consider that a deliberate move by any means.  We know plenty of times in this sport, what comes around goes around."


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Posted on: February 26, 2012 6:37 pm
Edited on: February 26, 2012 6:44 pm
 

Drivers anxious, but don't see delay as big deal

Posted by Brian De Los Santos


It was a soggy day at Daytona International Speedway. (Getty Images)

NASCAR wanted desperately to be able to run the Daytona 500 on Sunday, but the weather would not cooperate, forcing the first postponement in the race's history. Drivers and crew chiefs were in some disagreement about how much the rain will ultimately impact the race when it does get under way.

On postponement

Carl Edwards: “Well, this is one of the toughest things for us drivers and you guys are living it as well. You planned on getting this race in and writing the stories and covering the event. When you put that off for another day, for all of us it is now who can really stay focused. That is not just the drivers; it is the pit crews, crew chiefs and everyone, including the officials. I think we will be just fine. Someone told me this was the first time it was postponed. A couple years ago I remember it was late or something. I think that is a pretty good record for NASCAR. They have been living right to have 53 of these and never have one of them postponed. That is pretty spectacular. We will come race tomorrow and I think everyone is really excited about this race. All the drivers I have spoken with and all the fans. This is going to be a very good Daytona 500 and I think NASCAR is doing the right thing in not dragging this out. Everybody knows we will be racing tomorrow during the day, it will be a good event and hopefully the weather will hold off and we aren’t in the same position tomorrow.”

Greg Biffle: "I just tweeted that I guess I’m gonna have to win the first Monday Daytona 500. As you can tell, I’m still in my uniform because I was optimistic that this weather was gonna get out of here and we were gonna get this thing going, but I’ll just have to save my energy for tomorrow. I got all of the hard work done today. I did all the hospitality and that stuff, so I’m ready to go. I just can’t wait. I guess I’ll have to wait until 12 o’clock tomorrow and take that green flag. I’m just excited. I’m still on the front row. Hopefully, the weather is better tomorrow. I know a lot of race fans are disappointed and a lot of people at home on TV, but we just hope they tune in tomorrow. It’ll be a great race.”

Dave Rogers (Kyle Busch's crew chief): "This has proved to be a historic event -- 54 years and the first time the Daytona 500 has ever been rained out. Everyone wishes we could have raced today. It's an exciting day to be down here in Daytona. The first race of the year and we were real excited to get on the race track and see how strong our Toyota Camry is -- obviously want to duplicate our performance from the Shootout last Saturday, but we're going to have to wait another day. Tomorrow's looking pretty bad too -- 80 percent chance of thunderstorms and then as a race team you start to think about the logistics. Phoenix is next week -- it's a long trip for these transport drivers. If it gets delayed too long, it could have consequences that bleed over into next week's event. Hopefully, Mother Nature will cooperate and we'll get the Daytona 500 in tomorrow afternoon."


How will the rain effect the track?

Carl Edwards: “The only thing is that the rain will make the track a little more abrasive to start. I think NASCAR will have a competition caution and we will get to look at the tires. We didn’t see any trouble in the Gatorade race, the shootout, that is something you worry about at these places because of the speeds. If you get the camber wrong, we have had trouble at these places because too much camber heats up that outside edge of the tire sometimes even on the straightaway. I don’t think anyone will have an issue though.”

Greg Biffle: “I think this race track, because of the grip and the downforce the race cars have, I think that you won’t see a big difference with the track rubbering up. The speeds will be a little bit faster because the track will be green, but I think for that first run the track is gonna get some rubber on it. NASCAR will probably do a competition caution just to make sure that everything is going OK – probably lap 30 or 25 – so I think it’ll be OK. It’ll just be fast at 12 when we start, but then it’ll be the same game after the first pit stop.”

Joey Logano: "It's not going to change the track that much. It's not a big handling race track, so it shouldn't change much. Just another day to be thinking about it -- another day to be getting ready. Go to sleep and go at it again tomorrow at noon."

Dave Rogers (Kyle Busch's crew chief): "It certainly will, but this track still has a lot of grip in it. The pavement is still fresh. I would be more concerned at other tracks than I am here at Daytona. There's definitely some things you have to think about. You can't really do anything about it, but the cooling. We were all excited to race on a cooler day -- low 60s. That means we can get a little more aggressive,we can push on people a little bit more and not have to worry about that water temp as much. If we end up racing in 70, 75, 80 degree weather then obviously the drivers aren't going to be able to push as hard and you're going to have some affects there. The weather is definitely going to affect the way the race plays out, but at this point, as a crew chief there's not much you can do because you can't work on the cars at all. We just have to stay here and play it out."

Jason Ratcliff (Joey Logano's crew chief): "It does a little bit. Obviously, with the new surface -- the tire is pretty durable here. Goodyear brought a tire that's really durable because the surface is so new. I don't think it's going to show up as much as maybe another race track that had an older, abrasive surface. It's going to be much cooler outside -- the track is going to be green. It could change dramatically until we get some rubber back on the track. Then as the temperatures start dropping, we may see something that is more similar to what we saw in the Shootout than what we saw in the 150s."

Brian Pattie (Clint Bowyer's crew chief): "I don't know that it changes much here. If we were at an intermediate track, it would probably change the setup somewhat, but we're so wide open here. It actually gains grip, so it wouldn't be a bad thing for us. Definitely cooler weather would help our Toyota run better, I think. I don't know if I would change anything."

Daytona Speedweeks



Posted on: February 25, 2012 1:48 pm
Edited on: February 25, 2012 5:02 pm
 

2012 Daytona 500 predictions

Daytona 500 Winner

Pete Pistone's pick

Kyle Busch -- I’ve been coming to Daytona since I was a kid and watching NASCAR racing pretty much my entire life. Never have I seen a display like the one Kyle Busch put on in Saturday night’s Budweiser Shootout, saving his car three different times when it was completely sideways and somehow coming back from that shower of sparks to win the race. Say what you want about his personality or his behavior but it’s impossible to argue that Busch is one of the most talented drivers the sport has ever seen. He is very determined to put the controversy of last year behind and focus on winning races and the Sprint Cup championship in 2012. That quest begins this weekend and Busch will get the year off on the highest of notes with a win in “The Great American Race.”

Brian De Los Santos' pick

Carl Edwards -- I could really name just about any driver from the Roush Fenway camp as they've been very impressive during Speedweeks. Its drivers have been at or near the top of the speed charts during most practices, Edwards and his teammate Greg Biffle were top 2 in qualifying and third teammate Kenseth won Gatorade Duel 2, an event Biffle led for a race-high 40 laps. But while championships may elude Edwards, the Daytona 500 might just land in his lap. If Edwards can pull it off, he'd be the 18th pole-sitter to win the 500 and the first since Dale Jarrett in 2000.

Dark Horse

Pete Pistone's pick

Marcos Ambrose -- The entire Ford contingent has been fast at Daytona since it rolled off the haulers at the start of Speedweeks. Ambrose is among those who have stayed near the top of speed chart in practice sessions and the Richard Petty Motorsports driver also factored into both the Budweiser Shootout and Gatorade Duel outcomes. The popular Australian feels at home in NASCAR after finding his way the last few seasons and many believe he’ll win his first oval track race in 2012 in addition to being a powerhouse on the road courses. That victory could come on Sunday with Ambrose giving his fans both in the U.S. as well as “down under” something to celebrate.

Brian De Los Santos' pick

Trevor Bayne -- The defending Daytona 500 champion as a darkhorse? I may be stretching this a bit, but I haven't heard anybody giving him much of a chance to repeat. He's been decent during Speedweeks, but remains somewhat of an afterthought behind the Cup regulars. He's flying under the radar, but has the car to pull of the win again. At the very least, you can say he has experience winning NASCAR's biggest race. How wild would it be if Bayne were to make it 2 for 2 in the Daytona 500?

Surprise Top 10

Pete Pistone's pick

Dave Blaney -- The former World of Outlaws Sprint Car champion had a guaranteed starting spot in the Daytona 500 thanks to his finish inside the Top 35 last year. But after team owner Tommy Baldwin worked out an agreement with Stewart-Haas Racing to transfer those points to Danica Patrick, Blaney had to race his way into the 500 in Thursday’s Gatorade Duel. Last season the underdog turned a lot of heads with stellar restrictor plate track performances at both Daytona and Talladega so Blaney has skills in the draft. He may also have a little extra motivation as well on Sunday after the off-season points maneuvering and despite being a David against the Goliaths of the series; a finish inside the first ten is not out of the question.

Brian De Los Santos' pick

Aric Almirola -- It's easy to forget that Almirola is the newest driver of the No. 43 car, replacing A.J. Allmendinger, who jumped to Penske Racing to fill the No. 22 seat vacated by Kurt Busch. He definitely has speed as he topped the fourth practice session and was second in the fifth session. Another driver with Ford power under the hood, don't be surprised to see him running near the front on Sunday.

Quick picks

  Pistone De Los Santos
Better Busch brother finish Kyle Kurt
Will Danica finish on lead lap No No
Over/Under Caution Flags (8) Under Under
Over/Under Caution Laps (25) Over Over
Over/Under Leaders (20) Over Under
Over/Under Lead Changes (50) Under Over

Daytona Speedweeks


Posted on: February 24, 2012 12:08 pm
Edited on: February 24, 2012 1:24 pm
 

Opening Friday practice to Carl Edwards

By Pete Pistone

DAYTONA 500 PRACTICE FIVE SPEEDS

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - Teams changed engines after Thursday's Duel at Daytona qualifying races and had their first chance to hit teh track for practice Friday morning.

However only 16 drivers took advantage of the opportunity and Carl Edwards led the way.

With several teams opting to sit out the day's first of two practice sessions choosing to not risk damage to their Daytona 500 cars, Edwards continued the Ford dominance of Speedweeks with a fast lap of 198.671 mph. Ford has led all five Daytona 500 practices so far this week.

Richard Petty Motorsports teammates Aric Almirola and Marcos Ambrose were next on the list with Juan Pablo Montoya - in a back-up car after wrecking his primary mount in Thursday's qualifying race - and Greg Biffle rounding out the top five.

The day's final practice session is set for early Friday afternoon.

 
Daytona Speedweeks

Posted on: February 19, 2012 5:47 pm
Edited on: February 19, 2012 6:18 pm
 

Edwards quickly erasing 2011 memories



By Pete Pistone


DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - There doesn't appear to be any lingering atmosphere over Carl Edwards after last year's championship disappointment.

Edwards kicked off his season in the best possible way by winning the Daytona 500 pole on Sunday.

The effort to claim his first pole in "The Great American Race" should immediately erase any doubts about Edwards being able tp pick up where he left off in 2011.

“This is very special," Edwards said giving credit to the Roush Fenway Racing organization.  "It’s not a driving accomplishment, this is a team accomplishment, this pole.  Any one of the drivers that would have gone out at the time I went out and would have been driving that 99 car, the Fastenal Fusion, the would have run the same lap time that I did, so this pole and these qualifying sessions at these restrictor plate tracks shows you what the guys are doing at the shop.  It shows you the engine capabilities and the engineering and the decisions by guys like (interim crew chief) Chip (Bolin) and (crew chief) Bob (Osborne), so this is about the team.  Today, there’s a lot of pride in this for everyone."

While Edwards continues to maintain not losing any sleep over the way his 2011 season ended with teh tiebreaker loss to Tony Stewart for the championship, he does admit the Daytona pole is the perfect way to begin the new campaign.

"It feels really nice," said Edwards.  "This is our second pole in a row, so it feels nice to pick up right where we left off."

But Edwards is not putting any more thought into points or positions or coming up short in his bid for last year's title.

In his mind it's a fresh start and one that's begun on a very imprtant positive note.

"I’ve been telling everybody – it seems like every media question and all anybody says is, ‘How great would it have been to have one more point and how did you deal with that this off-season?’  I think this is nice to come here and show everyone that, hey, it isn’t just talk," he said.  "

"Everybody at Roush Fenway went back and worked hard and kept their heads down and dug, just like Chip said, they’re the best racecars we’ve had in a long time, so I thank Jack Roush for that and I thank Chip and Bob and Robbie Reiser and Doug Yates and everybody who builds these racecars for not letting the disappointment of not winning that championship slow us down, but, instead, giving us real motivation.”  

 
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Posted on: February 8, 2012 4:25 pm
Edited on: February 8, 2012 4:27 pm
 

Subway increases sponsorship for Carl Edwards

By Pete Pistone

SUBWAY has expanded its partnership with Carl Edwards and Roush Fenway Racing from the primary sponsor of the No. 99 Ford Fusion in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series for three races in 2011 to six races starting in 2012.

The new deal also includes four additional races as a major associate sponsor and becoming the Official Training Restaurant of Carl Edwards and Roush Fenway Racing.

The schedule kicks off March 4 at Phoenix International Raceway; returning to the track March 25, at Auto Club Speedway; June 3, Dover International Speedway; July 7, Daytona International Speedway; Sept. 2, Atlanta Motor Speedway; and Oct. 7, at Talladega Superspeedway.

Edwards will again be featured in the company's advertising campaigns.  The first new on-air ad with Edwards will run during the national television broadcast of the Daytona 500 (Feb. 26 on FOX).

“I am extremely pleased that SUBWAY has expanded their relationship with Roush Fenway Racing,” said Jack Roush, co-owner, Roush Fenway Racing. “As a company, we promote a healthy lifestyle with our employees and in particular, our drivers and pit crew members. Having the SUBWAY restaurant chain as our Official Training Restaurant is ideal.” <sup>  
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Posted on: January 26, 2012 2:36 pm
 

Media tour misses key personalities

By Pete Pistone

CHARLOTTE - Not everyone was on hand during this week's annual NASCAR Sprint Media Tour in Charlotte.

Several key drivers and team owners were absent due to a variety of reasons.

Roush Fenway Racing drivers Carl Edwards and Matt Kenseth weren't present during their team's function. Edwards was out of the country at a pre-planned vacation while Kenseth missed the proceedings due to a family emergency.

Team owner Richard Childress was missing from the trek to his headquarters in Welcome, North Carolina out of a sponsor-related fishing trip.

But Kasey Kahne might have had the best reason to miss the tour as he was fulfilling his civic obligation serving on jurt duty.

“We’re really excited to have Kasey Kahne join our organization,” said Rick Hendrick. “They (Kahne and crew chief Kenny Francis) fit in like a glove and we’re really excited to have them added to our organization.”

Naturally, Kahne was the target for a few friendly jokes during the proceedings by his new Hendrick Motorsports teammates Dale Earnhardt, Jr., Jimmie Johnson and Jeff Gordon.

“For anybody that questions the privileges that NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers get along the way and the celebrity that we may have, I think Kasey Kahne is a perfect example,” Gordon said. “Not being able to get out of jury duty is where we stand.” 

 
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Posted on: January 13, 2012 2:03 pm
Edited on: January 16, 2012 12:46 pm
 

2011 Team Review/Preview: Roush Fenway Racing

By Pete Pistone


Image Detail
(Edwards damaged his car in the post-race celebration but was still the All-Star Race winner at Charlotte in May)

Review


Roush Fenway Racing couldn’t have missed out on the 2011 Sprint Cup Series championship any closer than it did. Unfortunately the organization and Carl Edwards has the dubious distinction of being the only team to miss out on a title by virtue of a tiebreaker, thanks to Tony Stewart’s five victories in the season. 

But the season turned in by Edwards was still impressive and overall RFR enjoyed another banner campaign even if the Sprint Cup trophy didn’t accompany team owner Jack Roush home from Homestead. 

“I’m 69 years old, and I had a couple of chances to look at my own mortality and think about what I have done with my life,” Roush said trying to put the disappointment in perspective. “Looking at the end of your time in the mirror thinking that you missed an opportunity that could have ended your time probably did more to sober me than anything else.”

Edwards won one race during the year in addition to taking home a one million dollar payday in the Sprint All-Star Race at Charlotte Motor Speedway. He was otherwise the model of consistency. Edwards finished second seven times and although he managed an average finish of 4.9 in the Chase (the best in the format’s history), it wasn’t enough to stop the Stewart and his incredible drive to the title. 

"If I look back on this Chase, there's not one thing that I say that I'd have done or wish I had done,” Edwards said. “I'm truly proud of this season." 

The year also included some contract drama for Edwards who after entertaining offers from other teams including Joe Gibbs Racing signed a contract extension to remain in the Roush camp. 

Edwards’ teammate Matt Kenseth had another typically consistent year that saw the former series champion return to victory lane with multiple victories.

Kenseth finished the season fourth in the series standings and scored three wins along the way, including a victory at Texas Motor Speedway in April to snap a 76-race winless drought.

Through it all, Kenseth was his usual low-key self and didn't mind if others received more attention.

“What’s important to me is trying to win races and trying to be competitive and doing the best job we can do every week," Kenseth said. "I don’t really care about Wii dance-offs or how much coverage you get for doing certain things. If somebody wants to say I’m boring or whatever, I was hired to try to win races and try to run good and that’s what I try to do every week.” 

His undoing may have come at Martinsville when he was swept up into a feud with Brian Vickers that ended with Kenseth in a wrecked race car and took him from championship contention. 

“I wish Matt hadn’t lost his mind at Martinsville and taken himself out of contention,” said a disappointed Roush. “Finishing fourth in points is commendable but he wasn’t challenging for the championship at Homestead, which we had hoped for.” 

Greg Biffle went through the campaign winless and could finish no higher than sixteenth in the standings. A variety of pit road miscues as well as mechanical problems added to Biffle’s frustrations. 

“We didn’t win a race with Greg Biffle and we should have,” Roush said. “We should have won more races with Carl but we didn’t – either because of decisions we made on pit road or because of the way things unfolded on the race track in regards to weather. Sometimes a wreck and a caution that would occur would frustrate your best-made plans and strategy.” 

Finally David Ragan became a first-time Sprint Cup Series winner with his victory at Daytona in the July Coke Zero 400. Ragan nearly won the Daytona 500 but was penalized for an illegal pass on a late race restart but was able to rebound with the trip to victory lane in the annual Fourth of July weekend race. 

However it was a pressure-filled year for Ragan who was forced to compete not knowing what his future would be with the team given sponsorship issues with long-time backer UPS. 

In the end UPS pulled its full-time sponsorship from the No. 6 car and Ragan was squeezed out when Roush was forced to downsize his team to three cars for 2012. 

While Roush was hoping to keep Ragan in the fold, he was disappointed at his overall performance during his career with the team. 

“David Ragan was a frustration and disappointment for all of us because he was not able to realize the potential given what his skill is, what the expectations of the sponsor were and what the performance was being demonstrated in the car and the engineering package was,” Roush said.



Preview 

The streamlined Roush stable brings Edwards, Biffle and Kenseth back for 2012 and hopes to avoid a hangover effect of just missing out on last year’s championship. 

Edwards and crew chief Bob Osborne feel confident they can put last year’s disappointment behind and concentrate on finishing the job this season. 

“I’ve accepted the fact that we didn’t win it, but I’m also really excited about the way we could potentially run this year,” Edwards said. “I feel more confident than I’ve felt ever, and kind of more calm because I know we can do it.” 

Kenseth has found chemistry with old school crew chief Jimmy Fennig and with the core of the No. 17 team back as well as a host of new sponsors including newcomer Best Buy, the duo looks forward to challenging for this year’s crown. 

“We won races last year which was big and were in the Chase,” said Kenseth. “It didn’t work out the way we’d hoped in the end but I have no reason to think we won’t be strong again this year and back in the hunt for wins and a Chase spot.” 

Biffle believes having a full season with crew chief Matt Puccia, who replaced veteran Greg Erwin at mid-season, will be beneficial in the No. 16 team’s rebuilding process.

“I can’t say enough about Matt and how he helped bring this team together when he came in,” said Biffle. “That’s a tough thing to do and once we can eliminate mistakes and hopefully some of the bad luck we endured last year we’re gonna be in the mix I promise you that.”

 

Outlook

The last driver to come up on the short end of a Sprint Cup title in dramatic fashion was Denny Hamlin when he lost to Jimmie Johnson in 2010 title race. Hamlin and his team was never able to recover from the experience. The pressure will be on Edwards and Osborne to avoid a similar fate. Kenseth should again be his sneaky self and find his way into the Chase but he’ll need to not let the wheels fall off his championship hopes again. Biffle was a bit of a mystery last season and still appears to be a long shot to make the playoffs. Overall the leaner Roush organization will be a factor for wins and Chase berths.

CHECK OUT MORE POSTS FROM OUR 2011 TEAM REVIEW/2012 PREVIEW SERIES 

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com