BRISTOL, Tenn. (August 22, 2008) – Edwards has dominated the concrete tracks over the past two seasons and won last year’s spring race at Bristol, but this trip didn’t turn out the same way. The No. 60 Save-A-Lot team did start out strong by qualifying 8th and running at the top of the charts in both practices, but finished the race 85 laps down in 37th place.
The key word for a race at Bristol Motor Speedway is survival. In order to be remotely successful at the high-banked, high-speed short track, a driver must avoid the many accidents that typically happen in such close quarters. In addition, he must do his best to keep the fenders on his car throughout the race, which can be a tall order when battling 42 other competitors who are vying for the same piece of real estate on a crowded half-mile oval in the mountains of Tennessee. This race was no different and Edwards started out dominating in the top-5 over the first 87 laps, but on lap 87 Edwards caused the second caution when his front right tire blew causing extreme damage to the right front of the car.
Edwards pitted and the Save-A-Lot team assessed the damage and decided it was too much damage to fix on pit road. Crew Chief Drew Blickensderfer radioed Edwards and the team to take it behind the wall for repairs. Edwards parked it in the garage and the No. 60 team sped into action fixing the damage caused by the tire.
On lap 173 Edwards returned to the track. He was 85 laps down and ran the remainder of the race for pride, his team and Save-A-Lot. He wasn’t able to gain any positions and finished in a disappointing 37th place when the checkers flew.
“We had some sort of failure with the right-front tire,” stated Edwards. “They (Goodyear) said that part of the bead melted and blew out. We did nothing different than we’ve done here in the past and it’s just real frustrating. I was just telling Elliott (Sadler) that I feel bad for those guys that they got caught up in it, but it was a total surprise. I was just driving along and the tire blew. Congratulations to Brad (Keselowski). He did a great job and Clint (Bowyer) did a great job, too, but that’s as bad of a points night as we could have. We just have to keep our heads up. We don’t ever give up. We know we’re good enough to go win this championship still. We just have to dig hard.”
Next week Edwards travels to California which is a great track for him and the No. 60 team. Edwards took a hit in the overall Nationwide Series standings and dropped to third. He will be back in the Save-A-Lot colors and the team is determined to take a chunk out of the lead and put their Ford Fusion back in victory lane.
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.