RICHMOND, VA. (September 7, 2008) – Friday night’s Nationwide race was postponed because of tropical storm Hanna and was moved to Sunday, setting up a double header following the Sprint Cup Series race. Edwards and the No. 60 Scotts team took advantage of Sunday night’s rain-delayed Emerson Radio 250 by taking the lead from series leader Clint Bowyer with 28 laps to go and held on through three late-race restarts to win on the .75-mile oval at Richmond International Raceway. It is Edwards’ fourth Nationwide win of the season and his 17th Nationwide Series career victory.
Edwards and the No. 60 Scotts team struggled with a loose Ford Fusion the majority of the race. It was a long night under the lights for the Scotts team. Edwards was resilient and tenacious while steering his Ford Fusion out of trouble’s way, which was key in the last 88 laps and five cautions. He nailed down his 12th top-5 of the 2008 season.
Edwards started the race on Sunday evening from the 5th position. The 43-car field was set by owner’s points because qualifying was cancelled due to rain on Friday afternoon and evening. He dropped back a few positions early in the race but was able to regain those positions after his first pit stop. His crew took a round of wedge out of the left rear, went a round down on the track bar, changed two tires and added fuel in a 7.0 second pit stop. He entered the pits in 5th and was in 1st on lap 37 after their pit strategy played out.
Edwards radioed in to his crew that his car was too loose on the gas when he had dropped back to 2nd on lap 44. They opted to stay out during the second caution and were not able to make adjustments until their second pit stop on lap 96. In a 16.75 second pit stop his crew changed four tires, added fuel and made another wedge adjustment. He had dropped back to 3rd when green flag racing resumed on lap 100.
Once again they decided to stay out during the next caution and did not pit again for adjustments until lap 161 when the fourth caution flag flew. This pit stop took 19.3 seconds while his crew changed four tires, added fuel and made air pressure and wedge adjustments. The race went green again on lap 167 and Edwards was shown in 3rd again.
Edwards pitted for the last time on lap 203 under yellow. His crew made no changes other than tires and a splash of fuel in 14.52 seconds. Edwards took the lead on lap 223 and only looked back through his rearview mirror. There was a flurry of late race cautions during the last 25 laps and Edwards was able to maintain the lead until the checkers flew on lap 250. His margin of victory was 1.552 seconds ahead of 2nd place Scott Wimmer.
An excited crowd was on their feet as Edwards pulled up to the start/finish line. He got out of his car, stood on the side as the crowd roared, and he celebrated with his signature backflip. It was a fabulous finish to a very long day after he had driven two races in less than an eight hour time span.
"Clint [Bowyer] was doing such a good job, but he was just a little free," said Edwards, “He wiggled that one time [on Lap 223], and that was all I needed. My Scotts team came together when it counted and we pulled off a big win tonight. It was awesome!”
Next week the NASCAR Nationwide Series is off for the weekend while the NASCAR Sprint Cup series races in Loudon, New Hampshire. Edwards will join the No. 60 World Financial Group team in two weeks at the “Monster Mile” in Dover. Edwards regained the 2nd position in the overall points standings and is 207 points behind series leader Clint Bowyer.
About Roush Fenway Racing
Roush Fenway Racing operates 13 full-time motorsports teams, five in NASCAR Sprint Cup with drivers Matt Kenseth, Jamie McMurray, Greg Biffle, Carl Edwards and David Ragan; four in the Nationwide Series with Kenseth, Biffle, Edwards, McMurray, Ragan, Erik Darnell and Colin Braun; three in the Craftsman Truck Series with Darnell, Braun, Kvapil, Bobby East and John Wes Townley; and one in the ARCA RE/MAX Series with Ricky Stenhouse, Jr.