Edwards gets elusive victory with win at Phoenix
Auto Racing Videos
AVONDALE, Ariz. — Carl Edwards climbed from his car, stood on the door and landed a backflip near the finish line. He then hopped up on the wall in front of the grandstand, grabbed the checkered flag and waded into the crowd, trading high-fives with fans.
After a miserable week at Daytona, Edwards had plenty to celebrate. That it came at Phoenix International Raceway only seemed fitting.
Coming through on his promise to dominate after his Daytona disaster, Edwards pulled away on a late restart and snapped a 70-race winless streak Sunday, the second long drought he has ended at Phoenix.
“This win feels as good or better as any win I've ever had,” Edwards said.
Edwards had a rough 2012 season, missing the Chase for the championship. His downward spiral continued at Daytona, where he wrecked five cars. On his way out of Florida, Edwards said he was ready to dominate and win at Phoenix.
He did just that, leading the final 78 laps on the 312-lap race around PIR's odd-shaped oval in the first non-restrictor-plate race with NASCAR's new Gen-6 car.
Edwards got a good push from defending Sprint Cup champion Brad Keselowski on the restart with two laps left and pulled away from there, winning for the first time since 2011 in Las Vegas.
After parking his car at the finish line, Edwards landed his first backflip in nearly two years and celebrated with the fans — just like he did at PIR after ending another 70-race winless streak in 2010.
“I'm sure it's a relief for someone like Carl,” said Denny Hamlin, who finished third and had a long winless streak end at Phoenix last year.
The big duel came behind Edwards.
Despite struggling with his car most of the day, Hamlin made a bold move on the last lap with a pass on the apron below the dogleg. He popped up alongside Daytona 500 winner Jimmie Johnson, and the two drag-raced to the finish, where Johnson edged him by a few inches.
Keselowski, who was outside Johnson during Hamlin's move, finished fourth. Dale Earnhardt Jr. ended up fifth.
Mark Martin failed in his bid to become the oldest Sprint Cup winner. The 54-year-old led the first 49 laps and 26 more later on but couldn't sustain it. He finished 21st.
Danica Patrick had a rough follow-up to her breakthrough week at the Daytona 500. She couldn't stay with the leaders at Phoenix, ending her day with one of the hardest hits of her career. It happened with about 100 laps left, when the right-front tire on Patrick's No. 10 Chevrolet went down and slammed her into the wall.
Patrick's car careened back into David Ragan, flipping her hood over the windshield and shredding the left front fender as protective foam from the driver's side door flew onto the track. She came to a stop along the inside wall and climbed from the car. She was quickly cleared by the medical center.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Jewish congregations dwindling, forced to mull viability of worship sites
- Russian winger Plotnikov could join Penguins in August
- Pirates notebook: Taillon headed for surgery, Richard traded
- Pirates can’t overcome long rain delay, Indians in interleague setback
- LaBar: What’s killing professional wrestling
- New Penguin Kessel’s shot is what makes him special
- Gameday: Pirates vs. Indians, July 4, 2015
- Rossi: Rutherford shines as old boss pouts
- Freeport VFW initiates its ‘monumental project’
- America’s path to freedom reflected in region’s numerous historic sites
- Proposal aims to bring slots to Pa. airports