Daytona, FL. (July 3, 2009) – Carl Edwards and the No. 60 Save-A-Lot team started the Fourth of July weekend at Daytona International Speedway strong. He was in the top-10 on lap two and in the top-five by lap six. On a very hot and humid night, Edwards ran the majority of the race under the lights on the 2.5-mile oval in the top-10. He looked very strong and the pit crew provided very competitive pit stops. Edwards had reported that his Save-A-Lot Ford Fusion was handling really well and crew chief Dan Stillman made only minimal adjustments. The race ended in a green-white-checkered finish and it was a nail biter right down to the last lap with a big six-car wreck leaving cars spinning behind them as Brad Keselowski was pushing Edwards on the outside fighting Clint Bowyer and Kyle Busch for the lead. The race was wild and exciting for the fans and when the final caution flag flew it froze the field ending the race. Edwards recorded a very strong third place finish. Edwards took a small hit on the overall Nationwide Series points standings while maintaining second place behind the leader Busch.
Edwards started from the 11th position, but was in the top-10 by lap 2. By lap 6 Edwards was up in 3rd and reporting that the track was very slick. The first caution flag flew on lap 10 and Edwards pitted for fuel, four tires and a trackbar adjustment. He entered the pits in 4th, but reentered the race in 7th. Several teams selected to take two tires, so there were several different strategies going on early in the race.
Edwards reported throughout the first 40 laps the car was handling great and he didn’t need any changes. The second caution flag flew on lap 44 while he was in 4th place and he pitted for fuel, four tires and no changes. The crew blistered off a 13.7 second stop and resumed racing on lap 49 from the 3rd position.
A third caution came out on lap 58 and Edwards pitted for fuel and four tires only and the crew was able to duplicate a second 13.7 second stop. Edwards entered 7th and resumed racing in 7th. Several two tire stops put a few drivers out in front of Edwards.
Over the rest of the race Edwards shuffled around the top-10 and survived three more cautions positioning him to contend for the win. Edwards was in the second position watching and waiting for Bowyer to make a mistake. The white flag flew on lap 101 and reminiscent of Talladega earlier this year Keselowski was nose to tail pushing Edwards on the outside challenging the leader Bowyer that was being pushed by Busch on the inside.
The seventh and final caution flag flew during the green-white-checkered finish on lap 102 with a big six-car wreck. Edwards was still being pushed by Keselowski on the outside racing Bowyer and Busch on the inside when the yellow came out freezing the field. Bowyer took his first victory of the season and Edwards finished with a very strong third place finish. This was Edwards 11th top-5 of the 2009 season.
“That was close. I didn’t know whether to take tires or not,” stated Edwards. “I mean, these Goodyear tires that they brought here tonight, they’re perfect. They give up. They put a little strategy into the race. Our Save-a-Lot/Scotts Ford Fusion was really good there at the end. And I had a little advantage because I had those fresh tires, but when I was following Clint (Bowyer), I know he’s a dirt racer and I know he can hang on for a long time, but it was getting looser and looser. I just hated to see that restart for us to have to go to the outside. My man, Brad Keselowski, he pushed me and didn’t spin me out. That was awesome. We had a good run and I think we ended up third, so it was a great points day.”
Edwards and the No. 60 team maintained 2nd in the overall Nationwide Series points standing with a very strong night. He is currently 172 points behind the points leader Kyle Busch. Next week Edwards travels close to home to Chicagoland Speedway for another Friday night race under the lights. Edwards and the No. 60 team will be back in the Save-A-Lot next week.
About Roush Fenway Racing
Roush Fenway Racing is NASCAR’s largest team operating nine motorsports teams. Five in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series with drivers Matt Kenseth, Jamie McMurray, Greg Biffle, Carl Edwards and David Ragan; three in the Nationwide Series with Kenseth, Biffle, Edwards, Ragan, Erik Darnell, Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. and Colin Braun; and one in the Camping World Truck Series with Braun. For more information on any of the Roush Fenway Racing teams, log onto www.RoushFenway.com. For sponsorship inquiries please contact Robin Johnson at 704.720.4645.