Kenseth and Edwards Clinch Spots in 2011 Chase for the Sprint Cup with Top-10 Finishes at Bristol
BRISTOL, Tenn. (August 27, 2011) – Roush Fenway Racing’s Matt Kenseth and Carl Edwards each clinched a berth in the 2011 NASCAR Chase for the Sprint Cup ‘playoff’. It marks the seventh time in eight seasons of the Chase that Kenseth has qualified for the field. It is the sixth time in seven attempts that Edwards has earned a Chase berth.
Kenseth led 110 laps en route to a sixth-place finish in Saturday night’s Irwin Tools Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway to clinch the spot. He was joined in the top 10 by teammate Edwards, who started on the outside of the front row and finished ninth. David Ragan battled back onto the lead lap to finish 20th and Greg Biffle finished 31st, after having to pit under green with a tire issue early in the race.
“We had good pit stops and good strategy and we locked into the Chase, which is huge,” said Edwards, who has led the Sprint Cup point standing for much of the season. “That’s the first mission of the season and we accomplished that and we are looking forward to Atlanta (next week).”
Kenseth is now third in the Sprint Cup point standings, with two victories. Edwards is fourth in the points, with one win.
Roush Fenway’s Biffle and Ragan remain in the hunt for a playoff berth in this year’s field. Biffle is 16th in the point standings, while Ragan is 21st, with a victory at Daytona.
With just two races remaining before the “Chase” cutoff, the Sprint Cup Series returns to action next weekend for a Labor Day Weekend Showdown at Atlanta Motor Speedway. Roush Fenway has won six times in the Sprint Cup Series at AMS.