Roush Fenway Racing press release
Roush Fenway Racing Wins Five Year-End Awards at NASCAR Champions Week
LAS VEGAS (Dec. 1, 2011) – Roush Fenway Racing claimed five awards at today’s NASCAR NMPA Myers Brothers Luncheon in Las Vegas. Carl Edwards won the Coors Light Pole Award, Bob Osborne earned the DIRECTV Crew Chief of the Year award, the No. 99 Aflac pit crew won the Mechanix Wear Most Valuable Pit Crew award, Matt Kenseth received the Growth Energy American Ethanol Green Flag Restart award and Roush Yates Engines took home the Mahle Engine Builder of the Year award.
Edwards earned poles at Phoenix in February, Bristol in March and the season finale at Homestead-Miami to capture the Coors Light Pole award. The competition was tight for this award, with RFR teammates Matt Kenseth and Greg Biffle each earning three poles during the season, but Edwards and the No. 99 team prevailed in the end winning the final pole of the year.
“If I had known that there were so many drivers competing for this when I ran my lap at Homestead I’m not sure I would have pulled it off,” Edwards joked. “It says a lot for the Ford engine and the cars my team gives me every weekend.”
Roush Fenway won 11 Sprint Cup poles in 2011 and nine poles in the Nationwide Series.
Osborne led his No. 99 team to one win, 19 top-five and 26 top-10 finishes in 2011, in addition to winning the Sprint All-Star race in May and finishing tied for the Sprint Cup point lead. Under the direction of Osborne, Edwards and the team made this the closest race in NASCAR history for the Sprint Cup championship. Edwards accepted the award on Osborne’s behalf.
“Bob is like a brother to me and he’s probably the hardest-working guy in the business,” Edwards said. “He’s actually back at the shop today preparing for 2012 so we can come back even stronger next year.”
For the third consecutive year a Roush Fenway team was the Mechanix Wear Most Valuable Pit Crew. Greg Biffle’s 3M “Pit Bulls” won in 2009, followed by Matt Kenseth’s “Killer Bees” in 2010. Pit crew coach Andy Ward accepted the award on behalf of the team consisting of: Kale Uphoff, front tire changer; Alan Troutman, front tire carrier; Dennis Killian, jackman; Dwayne Ogles, rear tire changer; Jody Fortson, rear tire carrier and Joe Karasinski, gasman.
“I want to thank Mechanix Wear and NASCAR for this award,” said Ward. “I want to brag on these guys. This group has been a pleasure to work with. A lot of these guys are new and some won their fist race this year. I promised them we’d get to Vegas but we were one point short of staying for the banquet tomorrow. We’re already looking forward to next year to come back and win this award again.”
The Growth Energy American Ethanol Green Flag Restart award was given to Kenseth who recorded the fastest average speed on restarts while finishing the race on the lead lap. This was the first year this award was presented.
Roush Yates Engines won the Mahle Engine Builder of the Year award for its outstanding performance on the No. 99 Aflac Ford Fusion. Edwards did not have a single DNF in 2011 and won three poles with the Ford FR-9 horsepower under his hood. Doug Yates accepted the award on behalf of the organization.
“To grow up the son of an engine builder and get an award like this is really means a lot to me,” Yates said. “I’d like to thank everyone at NASCAR. What a year for Carl, Bob and Jack Roush. Jack is a true inspiration to me as an engine builder and a team owner. I also have to thank Ford Motor Company. We would not be here today without their support. We have a great team and a great organization that made this happen.”