Martinsville, V.A. (October 28, 2012) – Carl Edwards returned to Martinsville Speedway, the Chase’s only short-track race, to go for his first Sprint Cup victory in the No. 99 Geek Squad Ford. After multiple contenders encountered wrecks and roadblocks, Edwards was able to come out of the “paperclip” unscathed and sent his Ford Fusion to a 12th place finish.
“It was tough. We were terrible and then we actually made it back up and we were OK there at the end, but it just wasn’t good enough,” said Edwards. “It was kind of wild because there were a lot of cautions, so that gave us the opportunity to get our laps back and things like that, but if you didn’t take tires when you needed to it was rough. There was just a lot of strategy to it. It was a really tough race. Our car was a middle-of-the-pack car and we made it to 12th, plus Greg finished well, so we salvaged something.”
Edwards started 14th in the No. 99 Geek Squad Ford and right out of the gate was shuffled to 21st. Edwards said the car was handling a little tight center but felt confident in regaining track position throughout the 500-lap race. He broke into the top 10 after a restart on lap 207 and was able to run with the top-10 cars for a bit before a need for fresh tires hit.
By halfway Edwards had fallen back to 27th and he came in under caution for four tires and fuel on laps 287. On lap 300 he came in again for fresh tires and a track bar adjustment, allowing him to rally the No. 99 Geek Squad Ford back up the ranks and was at 18th by lap 312.
Despite the 17 cautions that came out during the 263-mile race, Edwards used the last 30 laps under green to take his Ford Fusion to a 12th place finish.
Jeff Gordon won the race followed by Matt Kenseth, Clint Bowyer, Brad Keselowski and Jimmie Johnson. Kevin Harvick, Denny Hamlin, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Greg Biffle and Jamie McMurray rounded out the top 10.
Edwards and the No. 99 team remain 10th in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series point standings. The next race will be Sunday, November 3rd at Texas Motor Speedway. The race will begin at 3 p.m. (ET) on ESPN.