home jobs contact us
Our Clients:
Browse by Sport
Find us on ASAP sports on Facebook ASAP sports on Twitter
ASAP Sports RSS Subscribe to RSS
Click to go to
ASAP Sports e-Brochure View our


March 16, 2014

Carl Edwards


KERRY THARP:  Carl Edwards joins us.  He wins tonight's 54th‑annual Food City 500, driver of the No. 99 Kellogg's Frosted Flakes Ford for Roush Fenway Racing, his 22nd win in the Sprint Cup Series, of course his first victory in 2014, gets you into the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup.  This is your third win here at Bristol, so I know this is a special win here for you this evening, Carl.  Congratulations getting in that‑‑ I guess they're calling it now the winner's club for 2014.  Congratulations, and just take us through today.  A long day, certainly, but a big win for your race team.
CARL EDWARDS:  Yeah, at this rate there will be 26 winners and it'll be a heck of a battle just to‑‑ yeah, first thing, thanks to my guys for working so hard.  Everyone worked really, really long hours last night.  Jimmy told me they worked until 3:00 a.m. on the simulation stuff trying to figure out what to do with the race car because we were terrible yesterday.  It was really bad in practice.
Huge day for us, though.  Great day for Kellogg's, for Frosted Flakes, Cheez‑It, everybody that was here that supports our team.  Huge day for Ford.  I mean, people were talking a lot about how Fords are running so great on Friday, and it wasn't our Fords.  It was not our Roush Fenway Fords.  We've been struggling lately, and for us to come out of here with a win and to run so well with a number of the Fords out of our shop, that was big.
Fun day, and now, yeah, I can‑‑ I guess I'm part of a group of guys that can go have some fun and focus on the final 10 races to get to this championship.  I've been a little bit jealous of those guys who have wins this early in the season.  I was thinking today, I can't imagine what it must be like to be able to come to the racetrack like this and have all that pressure off of you, so now we'll get to go have some fun.  I'm really excited about the next 22 races.  That'll be a blast.

Q.  Two‑part question:  First of all, winning Daytona propelled Dale Jr. on to Twitter.  Will this do the same thing for you?
CARL EDWARDS:  No.  Am I the last hold‑out?  Tony?  So that'll be a battle to the end to see which one of us can last the longest.  A lot of pressure from the sponsors‑‑

Q.  He's not allowed.
CARL EDWARDS:  He's not allowed?  They don't trust him?

Q.  They trust you.
CARL EDWARDS:  I don't know, well, no, I'm not going to be on Twitter.

Q.  Can you just describe what went through your mind when that malfunction caution came out?
CARL EDWARDS:  Oh, man.  I can tell you, for Robin and NASCAR to come up here and explain exactly what happened immediately after the race and just put it out there that, hey, it was a mistake and it was inadvertent, I think that says a lot about the state of the leadership of our sport.  I've been involved in one other incident like that, and I don't know if‑‑ I think I might be the only guy that's‑‑ anyway, I was leading the last time that happened at Charlotte in a truck race and we got passed, and Mike Helton, he wrote a‑‑ they put out a press release saying we messed up, we apologize to Carl and his crew, and I think NASCAR, that was 12, 13 years ago, and they still stand by their mistakes, and for them to come up here and say, hey, we messed up, that means a lot.  As a sport they make a lot of tough calls.  We all do a lot of things where there's a lot of room for mistakes, and so the outcome worked out for me, but even if it hadn't, I'm glad to be part of something where they just say, hey, we screwed up.

Q.  Ricky was saying that when the caution did come out, he's thinking in his head, bump and run, bump and run, and how he's going to win, and Jack said he would expect nothing less.
CARL EDWARDS:  Oh, I knew what Ricky was thinking.  It was going to be a battle.  I have a feeling if‑‑ the way I envision it in my mind knowing Ricky, knowing ‑‑ probably neither one of us would have made it back to the start‑finish line.  It could have been that ugly.  Aric probably would have been in a really good spot.  Ricky was being aggressive out there all night, and I knew what was coming, so that was going to be a battle.

Q.  Ultimately it didn't matter because the race ended, but when the caution comes out are you thinking, oh, no, now I've got to prepare to defend this win?
CARL EDWARDS:  Yeah, I was fully prepared for‑‑ I mean, smashing into each other, bouncing off the walls, wrecking each other for the win.  That's what I expected.  Now that I know Ricky was going to do that, I'll go ahead and return the favor next time he's in front.
No, I really expected it to be pretty crazy.  It's the only way you're going to get‑‑ I don't know, though.  It could have been a clean one, too.  Aric got really close to getting by me on the bottom clean.  We joke around about that, but I would not have been surprised if it would have been a big mess, but that's where we're at right now.  You've got to go for the win.

Q.  What did you think when Jimmy said to stay out with 70‑ish to go?
CARL EDWARDS:  I thought when Jimmy said we're going to stay out, I thought, well, that's a good idea.  And then nobody stayed out around us, and I thought, oh boy, that might not be the greatest thing, and it turned out to be perfect.  Our car was just fast or faster than it had been all night after that, so there was no detriment to our performance.  It didn't hurt us in any way staying out.  It helped all that track position, so that was good.

Q.  Carl, you kind of joked about it earlier saying we may have 26 winners in 26 races.  Everybody is making the assumption that we're not going to have 16, but it's starting to shape up like we could.  Is there added pressure‑‑ obviously there's less pressure because you have a win, but is there added pressure to get that second win?
CARL EDWARDS:  You're exactly right, there's been a lot of talk about it.  I've been listening to the radio guys a lot, and everybody is assuming that you win and you're in, and that's definitely not the case.  We have 12 more races, and all of a sudden it turns into there are already 16 winners‑‑ yeah, 12 more.  So I think‑‑ but the first step is you have to win.  I think we're proving that right now.  You're going to have to have a win, I believe, to be in the Chase, so now that we've checked that box, we need to go get another win, and I think then we will be guaranteed to be in it.
But yeah, just to have a win this early, man, it is a huge relief.  It's going to make California, Martinsville‑‑ it's going to be really fun to go there, and I'm taking a guess at what the 4 car and those guys were doing, but they were really fast down the straightaways tonight and they blew up, and they're probably on the, hey, let's develop things for the last 10 races program, and that's a luxury you have if you're in the Chase.  This new format is going to change the way people race throughout the year.  It's going to be very interesting to see how it all culminates at the end and see what everybody brings to those last 10 races, considering that they have time to work on things because there's not that pressure.  I don't know if I'm explaining that well, but it's going to be interesting.

Q.  Awfully wet racetrack, no qualms about doing that backflip?
CARL EDWARDS:  Oh, man, I thought, this is stupid.  I shouldn't do this.  I stopped right on the start‑finish line, I said, it's awfully glossy, it might be slick.  That's why I kind of landed on my hands.  I didn't want to stick it perfectly and have my feet go that way and break my arm on the concrete.  That would have been terrible.  At that point you just say what the heck, and it worked out.  I was actually really nervous about that.

Q.  Do you have a backup‑‑
CARL EDWARDS:  No, I don't have a backup celebration.  I ought to work on that, huh?  It's going to have to involve‑‑ I'm going to have to give something to the fans, pull out a bunch of tee shirts and throw them to the crowd because the last time I decided not to do a backflip they booed me out of the place, so I can't not do them.

Q.  Were you concerned when the caution came out that, oh, my gosh, I had this in the bag and then I'm going to have to try to defend it‑‑
CARL EDWARDS:  Yeah, concern is not really a strong enough word, but it definitely got my attention.  But at that point, hey, I've seen a lot of things happen in a race car, and I know that‑‑ I knew, hey, we're probably going to win this race if a caution doesn't come out.  The caution did come out, and I went, now we're going to have an opportunity to prove we deserve to win this race.  Honestly it might have been more exciting.  With everything like that there's always an opportunity, but yeah, I did not want to see that caution.  I did not at all.  So I'm glad that the rain came.  I think there was some higher powers at work that.  That worked out great.

Q.  How many laps into that final run did you kind of know, okay, no tires, or not pitting was the right call?
CARL EDWARDS:  I knew pretty quickly after we restarted that not pitting was the right call just how fast the car was.  We ran our fastest lap with 30 laps or 40 laps on the tires, so I felt pretty good.  I was a little nervous that Kevin had four tires and I think he was fourth, and I thought if we get a caution he'll start on the outside at the top behind me, and if I were to get a bad start he might be in position to snatch the lead from that spot.  With him out of the picture, I felt like we definitely had the right‑‑ we didn't have a disadvantage on anyone.  And still, I don't know that it would have been a disadvantage to somebody with tires, but that was the only one I was concerned about.

Q.  I have a big picture question.  With the way that the weather went tonight and it being unpredictable and you had two races out west and now you're going to go back out west, do you think it would make sense to stay out west and race California in order and race Bristol a little bit later?
CARL EDWARDS:  Robin was up here before me.  I've got a great Cessna airplane that I don't mind flying, so I'm fine to take the trip out west.  Right now from where I'm sitting I wouldn't change anything about the schedule.  It worked out great for me, rain included.  Just me and Noah enjoying this.
KERRY THARP:  Carl, congratulations on a great race today.  Thanks for sticking around.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

About ASAP SportsFastScripts ArchiveRecent InterviewsCaptioningUpcoming EventsContact Us
FastScripts | Events Covered | Our Clients | Other Services | ASAP in the News | Site Map | Job Opportunities | Links
ASAP Sports, Inc. | T: 1.212 385 0297