Charlotte II: Edwards - Thursday media visit

Carl Edwards, driver of the No. 99 Office Depot Ford Fusion, is second behind points leader Jimmie Johnson in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. Edwards held his Q&A session late Thursday afternoon to discuss last week's race at ...

Carl Edwards, driver of the No. 99 Office Depot Ford Fusion, is second behind points leader Jimmie Johnson in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. Edwards held his Q&A session late Thursday afternoon to discuss last week's race at Talladega and his hopes for this weekend at Lowe's Motor Speedway.

CARL EDWARDS -- No. 99 Office Depot Ford Fusion

HAVE YOU AND GREG TALKED? "Yeah, Greg and I talked and I've thought about it a lot this week, about what happened, and just like anybody, the first thing is you think, 'Man, I lost all these points,' but then the worst part of it is what happened to Travis and Greg and Harvick and Dale and Matt. It ended up costing a lot of people. I've gone there a lot. I've been caught up in wrecks and I can tell you that starting them is the only thing worse than getting caught in them, that's for sure."

COULD THIS BE SOMETHING THAT HELPS YOUR RELATIONSHIP WITH MATT AND GREG? "Matt and I, our relationship for the last however many months has been the best it's ever been and I feel like, as a team, that we're working together more than we ever have. I hope those aren't the points that cost everybody real big. I hope we can make them up, but I also appreciate Greg telling me that he understands it was a mistake and not an intentional deal. It wasn't like a wreck here."

WAS THERE AN ISSUE BETWEEN YOU AND KEVIN HARVICK? "The deal with me and Harvick is between me and him and there's nothing else to talk about. I'm not talking about it."

WAS IT ABOUT COMMENTS FROM LAST WEEKENKD? "We know where each other stands and that's it."


LAST WEEK BEFORE TALLADEGA GREG WAS KIND OF QUESTIONING YOUR MOVE AT KANSAS AND THEN THIS TIME HE SAID HE WASN'T MAD AT YOU AND THAT MAYBE YOU WERE A LITTLE OVERANXIOUS. "Let me explain. I go out there and I race as hard as I can. I do everything I can, just like all these guys, and sometimes it doesn't work out the best. Really, there are gonna be people that have opinions or feel a certain way and that's just the way it is and that's OK."

SO THERE'S NO CHANCE THAT THE CARL EDWARDS WHO HAS BEEN PROVIDING ALL THE THRILLS THE LAST COUPLE OF RACES IS GOING TO BACK OFF? "Not a chance. This is me. This is how I do things and how I race and that's the way it is. It's been a good year."

IS JIMMIE THE GUY TO BEAT NOW? "Jimmie is a guy that I think we all know that he's tough. I don't think it's necessarily his to lose. I don't think we're far enough back yet, but we didn't help ourselves by letting him get that many points on us last week."

WHAT HAVE YOU LEARNED ABOUT YOURSELF IN THE CHASE? "In light of last weekend, I don't know how much I've learned. I just feel like I'm a better racer and better at communicating with Bob. Even though last week turned out to be a mistake, I've made less mistakes and I feel like that's helped us in the points all season -- not just in the chase, but all season. I just feel I'm a little more savvy."

WHERE DID YOU GO WRONG LAST WEEK? "I looked at the tape and the deal is I was pushing Greg down the back straightaway. We're in a box where the only way you can really get by people is to team up like that. We went in the corner and I ended up getting too far off the center of his bumper. All day, people had been pushing me and I had been pushing people and I had no hint of the loose characteristic and I just got too far off center with Greg -- too far over to the left -- and that's it for whatever reason. And Greg's car snapped so quick. Like him and I talked, it just happened so quick that we were both surprised."

YOU HAVE TO BE FEELING BAD AS IT'S HAPPENING. "Nobody else pushed Greg's car around. It's a bad deal. I don't think I could have sat down before the race and said, 'Hey, what's the best that could happen and what's the worst that could happen,' and I don't even know if that would have been on the list. That was pretty bad."

CAN YOU TALK ABOUT HOW YOU FEEL ABOUT THE PEOPLE AROUND YOU THAT HELP WITH FINANCES AND THINGS LIKE THAT? "I've got a really great group of people around me. I handle my contract stuff myself and I'm advised by some really good people on that and some other things with the money and all that. I look at what's going on with Helio and I just feel bad for the guy. I'm not sure, but I can't imagine sitting down and saying, 'Alright, let's come up with this illegal scheme.' It probably was a bunch of iffy things that added up to something bad. I feel bad for him."

DID YOU GO INTO ALL THIS WITH YOUR EYES OPEN SAYING 'I'M NOT GOING TO PUT MY LIFE IN ONE GUY'S HANDS?' "That's just basic business, you can't put everything into one person's hands. You can't take all your advice from just one person and you have to have some checks and balances. I'm real lucky. I've got a great accountant and then another great accountant that watches and helps to make sure everything is alright. I'm real happy with it. It took me awhile to get everybody in line, but I'm real happy with it."

IS THIS A GOOD PLACE TO REBOUND? "This is a good place. You can't knock Jimmie out. He's got some sort of magic here. It's tough, but Greg was so fast in testing and that's the hope for all of us is that the things that Greg tested and worked for him, that we can kind of lean on that and Bob Osborne can come up with a setup as fast. We'd like to have such a good run here to make up some of those points right now and not over the long haul."

COULD YOU SEE A ROUSH DOGFIGHT HERE LIKE AT DOVER? "Yeah, that would be pretty cool. We're a good team. People have been working hard -- everyone. Robbie Reiser, the engine guys. I talked with Jack about it yesterday and how much this means to him. If it were to come down to me and Greg or me, Greg and Matt, that would be good."

IS IT AN ADVANTAGE THAT JIMMIE HAS HAD THE SAME CREW CHIEF FOR SO LONG? "Continuity is big in this sport, I think. If the people are really good, you've got to keep them around. Bob Osborne has been huge for me. Everytime you make a change, it's just like managing anything, if you make a change, even if it's a more capable person, by the time it takes to get them going, you're gonna perform a little worse. In this sport, there's hardly any timing. You don't have that wind-up time, so, yeah, Jimmie's got a good deal there. You look at what Tony and Greg Zipadelli have done, I hope I can keep Bob for a long time."

IT'S NOT JUST THE CREW CHIEF. "Oh yeah, it's the car chief and engineers. It's neat at Roush because everyone works so well together that there's more people -- a change might not be as big of a deficit, but it's still big."

WERE YOU PARTICULARLY UPSET WITH ANYTHING ANYONE SAID AFTER THE RACE SUNDAY? "Yeah, but like I said, we took care of that privately. I think that's the right way to do that -- man to man -- talk about stuff and make sure you understand how everybody feels."

HOW WAS JACK AFTER TALLADEGA? "Jack and I talked about it and he just wanted to make sure that I understood, and I do now -- more than ever -- understood how bad that was for everyone -- not just me but everybody involved. That's just a terrible result from a day there."

WHAT ABOUT YOUR PSYCHE AND HOW YOU RECOVER? "After that race, I've never been so excited about racing on a Saturday night. I wish we could have started this race as fast as we could get here to race. I would have loved to have raced last Sunday night. That's how racing is. When everything is going really well, you have everything to lose. And when it's not going too well, man, you just want to race and go get back on top. That's how I am, so I'm pretty excited about this race."


WHAT MAKES YOU SUCH A LIGHTNING ROD? "Like I said, I'm just a passionate guy and I stand up for what I think is right. That's how I am. That's how I've always been and that's just the way I'm gonna continue to be. That's how I race and I stand up for myself when I believe it."


IS IT IMPORTANT TO MAKE SURE YOU HAVE A LOT OF FRIENDS NOW ON THE TRACK? "We're all competitors and I think no matter what goes on off the race track, we all run pretty well together. There's just too much to lose out there on the race track. There's a lot to lose out there and I think we all race pretty well on the race track, so I don't think there's an issue there."

WILL WE SEE THE SAME CARL AS KANSAS? "I'm gonna race as hard as I can. That's it. It's like I said then and continue, I'm gonna do everything I can."

-credit: ford racing

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Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Jimmie Johnson , Carl Edwards