By Amanda Vincent, NASCAR reporter
- Edwards first to lead 3rd segment and win
- Edwards damages car celebrating win
- Kyle Busch finally finishes race
Carl Edwards ran a flawless NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race on Saturday night at Charlotte Motor Speedway to take his first-career All-Star win. His victory celebration, however, wasn’t quite so perfect.
“I messed up the car, guys,” Edwards told his crew over the radio after the race. “Sorry about that.”
After taking the checkered flag, Edwards took his car for a celebratory spin through the infield grass. He didn’t calculate for the manhole cover that was in his path, though. After hitting the cover, his car went slightly airborne and landed with a significant amount of damage, including a busted radiator.
We just kind of ran out of time.
Once Edwards did climb out of his car and executed his traditional victory back flip, he credited his No. 99 team for the win.
“The key to winning this race is right behind me,” Edwards said, referring to his crew.
Kyle Busch, who wasn’t accustomed to even finishing the Sprint All-Star Race battled finished second.
“We finally finished one,” Busch said.
Edwards pulled away from the rest of the field in the final 10-lap segment, but with a couple of laps to go, Busch reeled him in but was unable to get by him on the final lap.
“We just kind of ran out of time,” Busch said.
Busch started on the pole and led the first three laps before losing the top spot to Biffle on lap four. Biffle held on to win the first segment, with Roush Fenway Racing teammate Edwards in second. Edwards went on to win the other three segments and became the first driver in All-Star Race history to win the third segment and the race.
David Reutimann was third, and Tony Stewart finished fourth. Biffle rounded out the top-five.
All four Roush Fenway Racing cars finished in the top-10, with Edwards winning, Biffle finishing fifth, Matt Kenseth seventh and David Ragan eighth. Finishing among the Roush cars was Kyle Busch’s teammate at Joe Gibbs Racing, Denny Hamlin, in seventh.
Ragan advanced his way into the All-Star Race by winning the Sprint Showdown earlier in the evening. He was the highest finishing driver of the three who advanced from the Showdown.
Advancing after finishing second in the Showdown, Brad Keselowski reported losing his brakes early in the first segment of the All-Star Race and spent the rest of the evening running in the back of the pack. After Mark Martin, Regan Smith and Kasey Kahne fell out of the race, Keselowski was able to gain those three positions to finish 18th out of the 21-car field.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. was the third driver to advance to the All-Star Race from the Showdown, getting in by virtue of the fan vote. Once he advanced, he was never a factor running mid-pack or back throughout the race. He ended up finishing 14th.
Hendrick Motorsports sports experienced the opposite All-Star fortune of Roush Fenway. While all four RFR cars posted top-10 finishes, all four HMS cars finished outside the top-10. Johnson was the highest Hendrick finisher, just outside the top-10 in 11th.
Johnson ran near the front early before pitting to take two tires at the end of segment two when most of the other front-runners stayed out. When the third segment began, Johnson dropped back through the pack and never recovered.
Jeff Gordon finished right behind HMS teammate Earnhardt Jr. in 15th. Martin wound up 19th and with a DNF.