May 2, 2009 1:07 PM

Nationwide: Edwards Leads 71 Laps, But Finishes a Very Strong Second for the Fourth Time in 2009

RICHMOND, VA. (May 1, 2009) – Carl Edwards led 71 laps of the 250-lap race on the .75-mile oval at Richmond International Raceway on Friday night under the lights, but fell just short of the win by .584 seconds.  Edwards reported a loose car the majority of the race, but was able to maintain a top-10 position or higher throughout the entirety of the race.  The race ended in a very exciting five-lap run to the finish after the 10th caution.  Kyle Busch was able to hold off Edwards who captured his fourth second-place finish of the 2009 NASCAR Nationwide Series season.

The caution flags flew very early in the race on lap 5 and again on lap 13 and Edwards stayed out to feel out the handling of his car.  Reporting that his car needed a little more grip, Edwards pitted for the first time on lap 66 under caution for tires, fuel, and wedge and air pressure adjustments.  When green flag racing resumed, he had picked up another spot and was up to 3rd.

The second pit stop on lap 91 under caution was for tires, fuel and another wedge adjustment.  By lap 100 he had moved into the 2nd spot. 

Edwards stayed out on the track during the next two cautions and had taken over the lead on lap 158.  He held onto the lead for 71 laps through two more cautions and a pit stop for tires, fuel and a track bar adjustment.  Edwards won the race off pit road on Lap 205 but had to fend off a persistent challenge from Busch before Ken Butler's crash on Lap 220 caused the eighth caution of the night. On lap 229 he was passed by Kyle Busch after a restart for the ninth caution.  Several more laps ticked off for two more late race cautions on laps 232 and again on lap 243.

The 10th caution of the race, for Kenny Wallace's spin on lap 243, set up the final race to the finish line.  Anticipating the restart, Edwards was on the rear bumper of the No. 18 car, but couldn’t get past Busch at the end and had to settle for his fourth second place finish of the 2009 season. 

"He smoked me on the restarts," Edwards said. "I did everything I could. That car that he's got there just runs really well on those restarts. I could probably do a little bit better job, but I did the best I could on that last one, and I couldn't get near him.  But it's a great racecar, and even though it's second, it's still a decent points day, and it's good to be this strong here at Richmond.  My guys did a great job, but we need to finish ahead of Kyle (Busch)."

Next week Edwards travels to Darlington Raceway for his second consecutive night race.  This will be his fifth start on the 1.366-mile track.  Edwards maintained second in the overall Nationwide Series points standings, just 82 points behind leader Kyle Busch.  The No. 60 team goes to one of Edwards’ favorite tracks at Darlington and will be representing Scotts Miracle-Gro Liquafeed next weekend. 

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, McMurray, Ragan, Erik Darnell, Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. and Colin Braun; and one in the Camping World Truck Series with Braun.

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