This Week in Ford Racing March 9, 2004 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Carl Edwards, driver of the No. 99 Ford F-150, is ready to return to action this weekend following a three-week hiatus in NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series schedule. The ...
This Week in Ford Racing
March 9, 2004
NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series
Carl Edwards, driver of the No. 99 Ford F-150, is ready to return to action this weekend following a three-week hiatus in NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series schedule. The 24-year-old Columbia, Missouri, native is leading the point standings for the first time in his NASCAR career following his victory at Daytona, and Edwards spoke about this weekend's Easy Care 200 at Atlanta Motor Speedway, a new venue for the truck series circuit. Edwards also participated in today's NASCAR teleconference and a copy of the transcript follows.
CARL EDWARDS-No. 99-Superchips Ford F-150
ONE OF YOUR THREE WINS LAST YEAR CAME AT NASHVILLE SUPERSPEEDWAY, A FIRST-TIME VENUE FOR YOU. WITH ATLANTA BEING NEW TO THE CIRCUIT THIS YEAR, HOW DIFFICULT IS IT FOR YOU TO ADAPT TO NEW TRACKS? "I'm really excited about it because I think it will give us a chance to really use some of the things that Ford has spent so much time working on this winter as far as our body and more downforce, and just the new package with the new F-150. On that front I'm really excited, and it's also the first time since Homestead that we've gone to a track where we are going to have to get the chassis perfect. That will be fun, plus, I got to do a little bit of testing there and from what I saw I think the race track itself is going to lend to some really great racing with the ability to run on the bottom and the top - just the classic Atlanta races that you can run all over the race track. I'm really excited about that, but I'm also looking forward to the challenge of keeping up with the guys that have raced there before and the learning process of a driver that is going to have to take place the whole weekend."
IT HAS BEEN A MONTH SINCE YOU RACED AT DAYTONA, BUT IS IT GOOD TO GO TO A TRACK LIKE ATLANTA FOLLOWING DAYTONA? "I think it might be a little simpler because we're still conscious of the aerodynamic forces on the vehicle. It's a pretty natural step to go from a Daytona to Atlanta with the trucks."
DO YOU ANTICIPATE FASTER SPEEDS AT ATLANTA COMPARED TO DAYTONA? "I don't know if we'll go faster; I think it will be comparable. The difference is Atlanta is a mile shorter, so I'm sure it will feel faster. Atlanta is one of those tracks that will combine all of the things that make the truck series great. We'll probably be able to draft there in a pretty big way, and we'll obviously have the high speeds, but because it's got so many lanes it will kind of be like Daytona where you can pass all over the place. I've never raced there, but I'm assuming all of this based off the testing we did there last year with the new F-150. I think it's the best of all of worlds."
ATLANTA IS A NEW VENUE FOR THE TRUCK SERIES, REPLACING THE DATE BAKERSFIELD HAD LAST YEAR. DO YOU FEEL THE SERIES IS HEADING IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION MOVING TO HIGHER CAPACITY TRACKS WHILE RUNNING IN CONJUNCTION WITH THE CUP SERIES? "I don't know the answer to that. I don't know enough about it other than to say as a driver I enjoy going to the wide range of tracks we go to. It's awesome to get to race at a place like Daytona, and then also get to race at tracks like IRP. The truck series runs all over, and we've got a new one in Mansfield, Ohio, which is going to be neat. I like variety, and I think we have that with our schedule right now."
DO YOU FEEL THAT YOU HAVE RECEIVED MORE MEDIA ATTENTION AND EXPOSURE PARTLY DUE TO THE FACT THE TRUCK SERIES IS RUNNING MORE RACES IN CONJUNCTION WITH THE CUP SERIES? "I think it does from a driver's standpoint. It definitely helps, and it exposes us to more fans, too. It's really neat when we run at Martinsville and places like that where you can watch Cup practice and then jump in your truck. There's a lot to be learned from those guys."