Fontana II: Edwards post race interview

CARL EDWARDS -- No. 99 Office Depot Ford Fusion (Finished 2nd) "I was really looking forward to this race. We were so fast in happy hour, I felt like the stuff Bob has been doing has been great, and then on the first pit stop when they ...

CARL EDWARDS -- No. 99 Office Depot Ford Fusion (Finished 2nd)

"I was really looking forward to this race. We were so fast in happy hour, I felt like the stuff Bob has been doing has been great, and then on the first pit stop when they dropped the jack, the 42 was coming in in the pit stall in front of me and we pulled right out in front of him and wrecked our car up just a little bit. We fought back from that all day and I was really proud of my guys. The pit stops were awesome. At the end, it was really fun racing with Kyle. We were running on the fence. One time I looked up and he looked like a dirt late model, he had the right-rear sparking off the fence and standing on the gas. It was just a lot of fun there at the end. I wish we could have caught Jimmie. He was fading. For a while I thought we were gonna catch him and then we just kind of all evened out and we needed a caution or something, but I'm very proud of my guys."

WHO'S FAULT WAS THAT?

"It's Bob Osborne's fault, you know what I mean? That's who's fault it was. He apologized to all of us after the race and it was just a mistake. Bobby Hudson said to watch the 42. I was looking in my mirror and the way the sun was kind of setting, I don't think Bob could see which one was the 42 -- I know I couldn't. He said, 'Just go on the jack,' and they dropped the jack and it was just at the worst time. Bob is such an awesome guy and I know he's beating himself up over it, but I know we all make mistakes and he doesn't make hardly any. I'm behind him 100 percent and it's just a fluke deal. I don't think it will ever happen again as far as Bob making a mistake like that."

CAN YOU TALK ABOUT HOW YOU FEEL AT THIS TIME NOW VERSUS LAST YEAR?

"I feel a lot different, but I've learned a lot. They say you learn the most through your toughest times. Last year wasn't a disaster by any means, but we didn't live up to the expectations that we all set. This year is definitely different. I'm sure this week last year I didn't have a smile on my face right now, and now I do. That's all you can ask for is to enjoy it, but any of the drivers can tell you that you live and die by this stuff. It's tough. One week you can be a hero and the next week you're nothing. It's a really tough sport on you mentally and I think that having that bad year right off the bat kind of galvanized me a little bit and made me a little bit stronger person and a better competitor."

DID YOU THINK YOU WERE GOING TO CATCH JIMMIE OR WAS HE JUST DRIVING AS HARD AS HE NEEDED TO DRIVE?

"It looked to me like he was searching and he was a little slow. I thought he was gonna be a sitting duck. I even said to Bob on the radio. I said, 'I feel like it's me and Kyle racing for the win here.' You know Jimmie better than I do, but I don't think on the last green flag run you're gonna lay back. He goes pretty hard."

HOW MUCH OF A FACTOR WAS THE HEAT?

"I felt pretty good. My guys worked pretty hard on our car. When they're easy to drive you don't sweat as much. This could have been a 600-miler and I would have been just fine with that. I needed some laps at the end. I don't think that was as big of an issue as we thought it was gonna be. In practice it was unbelievably hot, but it wasn't that bad tonight."

-credit: ford racing

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Series Monster Energy NASCAR Cup