Ricky Stenhouse Jr. gives Ford Racing third NASCAR Nationwide Series Championship
Ricky Stenhouse Jr. registered his first NASCAR championship today in only his second full season.
The NASCAR Nationwide Series title is the third for Ford Racing and Roush Fenway Racing (Greg Biffle in 2002 and Carl Edwards in 2007).
This marks 12th driver’s championship for Ford Racing in NASCAR’s top three divisions combined (8 NSCS, 3 NNS, 1 NCWTS) and the sixth overall for Roush Fenway Racing (2 NSCS, 3NNS, 1 NCWTS).
Today also capped an impressive season for Mustang, which won a manufacturer and driver championships in its rookie NASCAR season. In addition, Mustang won 13 NASCAR Nationwide Series races, which is the most for any model in 2011.
Greg Biffle became the first driver in NASCAR history to win a NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and NASCAR Nationwide Series championship. Biffle captured the 2002 NNS title in dominant fashion as he posted a series-best 25 top-10 and 20 top-5 finishes in 34 starts. In addition, he tied for first with poles (5) and wins (4), but his consistency throughout led to a 264-point victory for the championship over second-place Jason Keller.
Carl Edwards won his first NASCAR championship in even more dominating fashion than Biffle as he claimed the championship by 618 points over runner-up David Reutimann. Edwards led the series with 21 top-10 finishes while tying for most top-5 efforts with 15 in 35 starts. He swept both races at Nashville for two of his four wins on the season with the other two coming at Bristol and Dover. Edwards was in charge of the points race pretty much the entire season, taking the lead after a fourth-place finish on the Mexico City road course in the third event of the year and never giving it up.
Ricky Stenhouse Jr. won his first NASCAR Nationwide Series championship in only his second full season of competition through consistency. He led the point standings for 17 weeks, including the final 14, and won the first two races of his career as he swept both events at Iowa Speedway. Stenhouse Jr. battled Elliott Sadler the final month of the season, but came out on top by virtue of six top-5 and nine top-10 finishes over the final nine races.
Ford's NASCAR Nationwide Series Champions
|2002||Greg Biffle||Roush Racing||4||5|
|2007||Carl Edwards||Roush Racing||4|
|2011||Ricky Stenhouse Jr.||Roush Fenway Racing||2||3|