Tag:Carl Edwards
Posted on: September 9, 2011 5:01 pm
 

Richmond Happy Hour to Carl Edwards

By Pete Pistone

Carl Edwards led the way in Friday's final Sprint Cup Series practice session at Richmond International Raceway.

Edwards put his Roush Fenway Racing Ford on top of the speed charts with Mark Martin, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Kyle Busch and Clint Bowyer the Top 5.

Qualifying to set Saturday night's Wonderful Pistachios 400 starting lineup are set for 5:35 p.m. ET this afternoon.

WONDERFUL PISTACHIOS 400 FINAL PRACTICE
 


 
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Posted on: September 6, 2011 11:56 pm
 

Chase clinch scenarios for Richmond


With only one race remaining until the 12-driver lineup for Chase is set, nine drivers have clinched their bids -- Jimmie Johnson, Kyle Busch, Carl Edwards, Matt Kenseth, Jeff Gordon, Kevin Harvick, Kurt Busch, Ryan Newman and Brad Keselowski.

Here are the clinch scenarios for the final three Chase spots.
             
Dale Earnhardt Jr.

Earnhardt is currently 25 points ahead of 11th place. Regardless of any other driver’s finish, Earnhardt will clinch if he finishes:
-- 20th or better
-- 21st or better and leads at least one lap
-- 22nd or better and leads the most laps
 
Tony Stewart
Stewart is currently 23 points ahead of 11th place. Regardless of any other driver’s finish, Stewart will clinch if he finishes:
-- 18th or better
-- 19th or better and leads at least one lap
-- 20th or better and leads the most laps
 
A number of different finishes affect the wild card:
 
Denny Hamlin

-- With a victory, Hamlin will earn at least a wild card spot. He can still mathematically finish top 10 in points.

Paul Menard

-- With a victory, Menard would earn a wild card spot.

Marcos Ambrose and David Ragan

-- With a victory AND entry into the top 20, Ambrose or Ragan would earn a wild-card spot. Both drivers are currently outside the top 20. Ambrose is seven points outside the top 20; Ragan is 20 points outside the top 20.
 
All drivers through 23rd place in the series standings remain eligible for a spot in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. Aside from the scenarios listed above, those without an already-clinched Chase spot need a win, a top 20 spot and various finishes from other drivers to earn a Chase spot.

Source: NASCAR

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Posted on: September 1, 2011 10:20 am
 

Fastenal to sponsor Carl Edwards Cup ride

Posted by Pete Pistone

From News Release

CONCORD, N.C. (Sept. 1, 2011) – Fastenal announced today that it has signed a multiyear agreement with Roush Fenway Racing to become a primary sponsor of Carl Edwards’ No. 99 Ford in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. Fastenal will be the primary on Edwards’ No. 99 for 17 Cup Series races in 2012, starting at Daytona International Speedway. The company will also sponsor two additional Roush Fenway entries in a yet to be determined 2012 Cup Series race, putting three Fastenal-branded Fords on the track during a single event. 

Fastenal, a regular primary on Edwards’ No. 60 Nationwide Ford Mustang since 2010, will continue its association with one of NASCAR’s elite drivers. During his stellar career, Edwards has racked up 19 wins along with 80 top fives, 133 top 10s and nine pole awards in just over 250 career Sprint Cup Series starts. He has secured his position in the 2011 Chase for Sprint Cup NASCAR ‘playoff’ for the sixth time in seven attempts and has led the Sprint Cup point standings for the majority of the season.    

“I’ve appreciated the long relationship that I’ve had with Fastenal,” said Edwards. “I’m proud that they believe so strongly in our team and program that they are making the commitment to sponsor us in the Sprint Cup Series.

“My partnership with Fastenal started in 1999 at my local dirt track,” added Edwards. “I would have never imagined that we would be going to the 2012 Daytona 500 together.  They have always treated me with the same respect that they treat their customers and I am proud to represent them."   

“It’s hard to imagine a better driver, or a better spokesperson for our company, than Carl Edwards,” said Cory Jansen, Fastenal’s Executive Vice President, Operations. “He’s become a true member of the Fastenal ‘blue team,’ and we can’t wait to see him make a run for the championship in the No. 99 Fastenal Ford.”

For Fastenal, the road to this marquee sponsorship began back in 2006 when the company began sponsoring a team in NASCAR's Truck Series. Fastenal moved to the Nationwide Series two years later.  But through it all, a Fastenal-sponsored car had never won a NASCAR race until its partnership with Roush Fenway and Edwards began in 2010.  Edwards and Fastenal have teamed up to go to NASCAR victory lane five times in the No. 60 Fastenal Ford Mustang, including four times this season.

“Because of the phenomenal season Carl is having, we’ve probably had more brand exposure this year than we’ve had in the previous five years combined,” added Jansen. “We’re looking forward to taking another huge step forward next season by presenting our brand to the tens of millions of fans who follow the Cup Series.”

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Category: Auto Racing
Posted on: August 26, 2011 3:37 pm
Edited on: August 26, 2011 5:00 pm
 

Bristol Happy Hour to Carl Edwards

By Pete Pistone

Carl Edwards backed up his performance in Friday's opening practice session by leading the way in final practice for Saturday's Irwin Tools Race Night at Bristol Motor Speedway.

Edwards led David Stremme, Juan Pablo Montoya, Clint Bowyer and Brad Keselowski in the Top 5.

Jeff Burton, David Gilliland, Paul Menard, Jimmie Johnson and Kyle Busch rounded out the first ten in practice.

Qualifying to set the field for the 24th race of the Sprint Cup Series season is set for 5:40 p.m. ET.

IRWIN TOOLS RACE NIGHT FINAL PRACTICE


 
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Posted on: August 26, 2011 2:35 pm
Edited on: August 26, 2011 2:51 pm
 

Carl Edwards paces opening Bristol practice

Posted by Pete Pistone

Carl Edwards put his Roush Fenway Racing Ford on top of the speed charts in Friday's first Sprint Cup Series practice session at Bristol Motor Speedway.

Edwards toured the half-mile oval in 15.789-seconds.

Mark Martin, Matt Kenseth, Brad Keselowski and Kasey Kahne were the fast five.

Sprint Cup drivers will have one more practice session Friday afternoon before qualifying later today to set the field for Saturday's Irwin Tools Night Race.

IRWIN TOOL NIGHT RACE PRACTICE ONE

 
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Posted on: August 24, 2011 3:51 pm
Edited on: August 25, 2011 10:25 am
 

2012 plans still on hold for many

By Pete Pistone

  Carl Edwards Drives
(Edwards will stay at Roush Fenway Racing but who will sponsor the No. 99 entry in 2012?)

When Carl Edwards signed to stay at Roush Fenway Racing the general consensus was the dominoes throughout the rest of the garage area would begin to fall. 

But so far “Silly Season” has been nothing more than “Snoring Season” with not much else announced for 2012 driver, team and sponsor line-ups. 

Danica Patrick will formally announce her Nationwide Series intentions to run a full year with JR Motorsports in a day or so but the other part of her NASCAR move isn’t as locked down. 

There’s anticipation Patrick will also compete in a handful of Sprint Cup Series races with Stewart-Haas Racing next season but as of last week in Michigan that was news to team owner Tony Stewart. 

“It’s like I’ve always said when we have something to tell everybody we’ll tell them but there’s nothing to tell yet,” Stewart snapped at reporters when questioned on the proposed alignment. “I know there’s a lot of speculation but there is nothing to really talk about yet.” 

Patrick’s part-time Cup program is far from the only plans still up in the air. 

Clint Bowyer would like nothing more than to extend his contract with Richard Childress Racing but despite both the driver and owner publicly admitting their desire to remain together, nothing has been announced. 

Bowyer has tried to put on a brave face but the distraction of trying to finalize his future while concentrating on the current Cup effort isn’t an easy one. 

“It is what it is,” Bowyer said before last week’s Michigan race. “That’s, unfortunately, part of this business every three years, but right now I’m focused on these next four races. I care about the future, but I’ve got to set that aside and focus on getting myself in the Chase.” 

The reported hold-up is around finding necessary sponsorship for the RCR No. 33 entry, which will lose General Mills at the end of this season. Current Steven Wallace Nationwide Series sponsor 5-Hour Energy continues to be in the mix as a potential replacement but right now there is no agreement. 

The same scenario stares David Ragan in the face. The resurgent Roush Fenway Racing driver has been impressive during his summer stretch, which has included a career first Cup win at Daytona Independence Day weekend. But sponsor UPS hold the cards and Roush Fenway Racing is still hoping to keep the company in the fold and in turn Ragan behind the wheel of its No. 6 Ford. 

"What I think about is what I can control," Ragan said a few weeks ago. "I do think about (the future) some, because I've had a great time with UPS and I feel like we have a good relationship and a good thing going and I look for it to continue, but that is something that the management at Roush and UPS will work on. 

"Hopefully, I can uphold my end of the deal and keep that Ford up front." 

Ragan and UPS are not the only sponsorship challenges for the Roush organization with only Greg Biffle’s 3M backing locked down on the No. 16 entry. Matt Kenseth’s ride is without a full-time commitment for 2012 and even prized free agent Edwards doesn’t have a complete season worth of funding for his car. 

Aflac is expected back in a limited role but the Michigan garage area was rampant with rumors Home Depot, who reportedly coveted having Edwards as its spokesperson had he made the move to Joe Gibbs Racing, might find its way to the 99 car. 

The home improvement giant has been a staple of the JGR sponsor stable for years, dating back to its two Sprint Cup championships with Tony Stewart. However since Joey Logano took over the ride from the departed Stewart, the struggling performance level for the young driver has forced Home Depot management to watch arch rival Lowes grab the spotlight for five years running with Jimmie Johnson’s title runs. Some restlessness within Home Depot’s corporate offices would be more than understandable. 

Sponsorship doesn’t appear to be an issue for Earnhardt Ganassi Racing with Target said to be staying on the No. 42 Chevrolet. However Juan Pablo Montoya has yet to be inked to a contract extension on his deal that runs out at season’s end. The former Indy 500 winner does expect the process to become a formality in short order. 

"We're pretty close. I think we're pretty close, yeah," said Montoya. "We'll see. When it's ready you will know." 

One other major piece of the “Silly Season” puzzle lies with the Team Red Bull organization and the two seats currently occupied by Kasey Kahne and Brian Vickers. 

Kahne is headed to Hendrick Motorsports for its No. 5 entry in 2012 but Vickers’ future is very uncertain even if team general manager Jay Frye is able to find investors to keep the organization afloat after Red Bull ceases its ownership stake.

The possibility of Red Bull staying in NASCAR, either with the new team or with another organization, remains alive but several sources familiar with the company say the longer time passes the less likely the company inking a sponsorship-only deal becomes.

In the past most of the maneuverings and signings for the following campaign were put to bed by this time in the season. But not in today’s NASCAR, where the continued rough economy and its impact on sponsorship continues to keep some major players in a state of flux.

For more NASCAR news, rumors and analysis, follow @ppistone on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed. 

 

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Posted on: August 9, 2011 4:21 pm
Edited on: August 9, 2011 5:47 pm
 

Idle Thoughts: All Carl Edwards, All the Time

By Pete Pistone



(Advertising pitchman is just one of the many roles that lie ahead for Carl Edwards)

Now that Carl Edwards is re-signed at Roush Fenway Racing you can expect to see a whole lot of “Cousin Carl” in the near future. 

That won’t mean just on the racetrack. 

Edwards’ deal to stay with the team where he’s spent his entire NASCAR career will keep him behind the wheel of the No. 99 Sprint Cup Series entry. But now as the most prominent face of Ford Motor Company’s racing endeavors, Edwards will be involved in a whole lot more. 

Expect to see Edwards pop up in more Ford marketing and advertising initiatives including everything from television commercials to billboard campaigns. 

Like so many other successful NASCAR stars it will only be a matter of time before a Carl Edwards Ford dealer or two pops up around say his hometown of Columbia, Missouri or perhaps other important locations for the manufacturer such as in the Detroit area or scattered throughout the sport’s hub in Charlotte. 

Edwards has already shown a willingness to reach beyond the auto racing and sports arenas and try his hand at other entertainment such as guest spots on the popular television program “24” as well as the long-time CBS soap opera “The Guiding Light.” There’s good reason to believe he’ll pop up in a similar fashion on properties that Ford heavily participates in as a promotional partner. 

How about Carl as a guest mentor on “American Idol” or at the very least showing up in one of the show’s goofy music video segments that are sponsored by Ford? Or why not pair Edwards with current manufacturer spokesperson Mike Rowe on his “Dirty Jobs” program and send Carl off on an episode to clean the oil change bays at a Ford dealership? 

There’s little doubt with Edwards’ personality and ready for prime time character his newly inked relationship with Ford will find use for his raw talents as a public spokesperson. 

But it appears Edwards’ career path away from his driving responsibilities will include even more. 

Team owner Roush dropped a bit of a bombshell on the assembled media after last Saturday night’s Nationwide Series race at Iowa Speedway, which saw Edwards and RFR teammate Ricky Stenhouse Jr. finish 1-2 while crashing into one another across the start-finish line. 

When asked whether the new contract with Edwards means more Nationwide Series starts for the team in 2012 and beyond, Roush had this to say about his driver’s future in NASCAR’s number two division: 

"I think he's (Carl) made his decision," said Roush. "I think he is going to become a sportscaster for ESPN for the Nationwide Series races. I'm not sure if he is going to just do the companion races or all the races." 

Working with ESPN is something Edwards has been doing for a while, appearing as an in-race reporter in both the Nationwide and Sprint Cup Series as well as a post-event analyst on “Sportscenter.” 

And while Edwards also has experience in the television booth, which came earlier this year when after an early engine issue knocked him out of the June Pocono race he joined TNT’s telecast, jumping into a more full-time TV role would be a huge decision. 

First it would signal the end of yet another Sprint Cup regular’s desire to compete in the complete Nationwide Series schedule, a trend that has seen both Kyle Busch and last year’s champion Brad Keselowski also dial down their participation. 

But more importantly it would bring unprecedented insight to ESPN’s television product by having a current driver in its telecast mix. 

Unlike the current stable of retired drivers and crew chiefs that dot the NASCAR television landscape, Edwards has actual experience in both the still relatively new Sprint Cup car as well as the less than year old next generation Nationwide machine. The nuances of each car and the characteristics of how they handle, what they drive like in certain conditions and other such insight is right at Edwards’ fingertips as a current competitor. 

But the decision to put Edwards in the booth also brings a set of challenges, namely in the form of potential conflict of interests. 

Edwards’s criticism of a particular team or driver not affiliated with Ford or Roush Fenway Racing may not go down easily with some fans who understand where the new broadcaster’s racing alliances lie. Conversely any praise or admiration to those associated with the Blue Oval manufacturer could be construed as being a homer or not objective. 

In the end ESPN and Edwards will have to weigh whether there’s too much downside to the potential relationship. The sport is already filled with a number of on-air personalities such as Rusty Wallace, Brad Daugherty and Darrell and Michael Waltrip who have ties to teams and manufacturers as owner or spokesman. Astute viewers are always on the lookout for any perceived favoritism by each and Edwards will no doubt also be under the spotlight. 

Then there’s the question of whether overexposure in general is an issue for Edwards. That’s a lot of Carl potentially on the horizon and as engaging a personality as he is in addition to being a natural in front of a camera or behind a microphone, there comes a time when everyone reaches an oversaturation point. 

Whether you’re a Carl Edwards fan or not expect to see a lot of him on a television or radio or billboard near you. I’m also pretty sure he’ll find time to drive a racecar as well.

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Posted on: August 8, 2011 11:34 am
 

Video of the Day: Ricky Stenhouse wild Iowa win

Posted by Pete Pistone

Saturday night's NASCAR Nationwide Series U.S. Cellular 250 at Iowa Speedway featured one of the most dramatic finishes in history when Roush Fenway Racing teammates Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and Carl Edwards crashed racing across the finish line:



 
 
 
 
 
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