DOVER, Del. (May 31, 2008) – Edwards and the No. 60 Save-A-Lot team struggled during the first practice, but worked hard during the second one to get the Save-A-Lot Ford Fusion dialed in. Edwards won the pole starting position by blistering off a 23.31 second lap and ran in the top-five for the entire race. The race was delayed for inclement weather and NASCAR had a small window to work with to get the race in because the 1-mile oval has no lights. Fortunately, the rains subsided and NASCAR was able to get the full 200 laps in for a very exciting race. Edwards fought Denny Hamlin for the win, but was beat by a 1.072 second margin. He finished second for his eighth top-10 of the 2008 season.
Edwards started first but dropped back to second before he could lead a lap. He advised his crew chief Pierre Kuettel that the car was good, but just a little too tight. Kuettel said they would make adjustments on the first pit stop and get his Ford Fusion freed up. The first of six caution flags flew on lap 19 when the No. 5 car wrecked. Edwards pitted for fuel, four tires and a pound of air out of both left side tires. The crew knocked out a 15.13 second pit stop and Edwards resumed racing on lap 24 in the third position.
Edwards fluctuated from third to fourth for the first 100 laps. He was still complaining that his Ford was too tight. The third caution came out on lap 104 and Edwards pitted to make more adjustments. The Save-A-Lot crew made air and wedge adjustments during a 16.5 second stop. Edwards entered in fourth, but when the race resumed he had moved up to third. He radioed in that his car was better.
On lap 123 Edwards had moved up into the second position where he stayed for the remainder of the race. He pitted one more time under caution on lap 154 for four tires, fuel and air and track bar adjustments in 14.1 seconds. He stayed out during the last two cautions.
“It was a great points night and I just thank everyone from Save-A-Lot,” stated Edwards. “Second place is not a lot of fun, but I do enjoy racing here. My hat’s off to Denny and everybody over there at Gibbs. They’ve been doing a great job. It was a good points day for us, which is the only consolation for not winning the thing, but it’s good. I’m proud of my guys for getting this car fast. In practice we were not good at all. We qualified on the pole and ran second. That’s a step forward, and hopefully, we can continue this and run better and gain some more points for this championship.”
Next week Edwards travels back and forth from Nashville, TN to Pocono, PA for the first non-companion races of the season. Jason Hedlesky will be called upon by Roush Fenway Racing to assist Edwards with practice and qualifying, and in the event of inclement weather, possibly driving in the race. Edwards and the No. 60 World Financial Group team go into Nashville with full intentions to “win” at the track where they have dominated. Edwards had a good points day and maintained third in the overall Nationwide Series points standings moving within 144 points of the 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.