DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Feb. 23, 2014) – Carl Edwards headed into the Daytona 500 with a fast car and feeling confident about his chances. After a rain delay and some pit strategy came into play, he worked his way up the field from the 30th position to the front by lap 175 of the 200 lap race. Following a constant back and forth battle for the lead, the Roush Fenway Racing driver settled into the fifth position for a green-white-checkered finish in which he was caught up in a last lack wreck resulting in a 17th place finish.
"The reason we all crashed at the end was that there was still some oil on the race track or some kind of fluid,” stated Edwards. “I went through it the lap before Kevin wrecked and then he got sideways right in front of me and hit the 18 and caused a bunch of havoc, but there was definitely fluid on the race track. I think if I would have done things a little differently we could have finished really well, but I did learn some things and I did have a good time. This is about the most fun I’ve had at a Daytona 500 ever, so I guess that’s something. I just hate to tear up that race car. That was a really good car.”
Carl Edwards’ 10th Daytona 500 appearance started with the two-time NASCAR champion playing it safe in the back of the field until the race was red flagged for rain for over 6 hours at lap 34. When racing finally resumed, Edwards did not pit, instead opting to stay out which gained the team 11 spots and placed them in 21st to restart the race.
Following the restart the No. 99 Fastenal Ford Fusion was shuffled as far back as the 40th spot. After deciding to only take two tires on lap 125 and with some drafting help, Edwards darted to the head of the pack and was able to overtake the momentum of Hendrick Motorsports driver Dale Earnhardt Jr.
Edwards led some laps and was in the fifth spot when the final caution came out putting him in a good place to make a run for the win. As he neared the finish he was collected in a pile up in front of him, causing significant damage to his Ford ending his night in the 17th position.
Tune in this Sunday as Edwards’ heads to Phoenix with hopes of duplicating last year’s victory. The PROFIT on CNBC 500 will air at 3 PM EST on FOX.