Phoenix: Carl Edwards preview

Carl Edwards on racing at Phoenix: "I love racing at Phoenix in the Cup cars. The neat thing about this race is it's going to be a longer race which I think will suit us. I don't know how many times I've told Bob (Osborne), 'if we'd just had ...

Carl Edwards on racing at Phoenix:

"I love racing at Phoenix in the Cup cars. The neat thing about this race is it's going to be a longer race which I think will suit us. I don't know how many times I've told Bob (Osborne), 'if we'd just had another 50 laps we'd be way better.' So we get another 63 laps so that will be good. It's great to have Subway on the car this weekend. Hopefully it will be a good race for us. We're close to being in the top 12 in points. We just need to make up a few points and get back in the hunt."

Crew chief Bob Osborne on racing at Phoenix:

"We have had very fast race cars in the past at Phoenix but Carl has yet to win a Cup race there. Phoenix is a unique race track in shape and that makes it a challenge relative to car handling -- it is hard to setup the car so it handles just right at both ends. This time they have added more laps to the race which could change our strategy depending on how the cautions fall. One more pit stop would give us an opportunity to gain more spots on pit road."

* Carl Edwards enters Phoenix 14th in the NASCAR Sprint Cup point standings, 171 markers behind point leader Jimmie Johnson. He has earned three top-10 finishes this season.

* 200th CUP START... Edwards will make his 200th career Sprint Cup start Saturday at PIR. His first start came at Michigan on August 22, 2004 where he started 23rd and finished 10th. In 199 starts he has 16 wins, 61 top-five, 102 top-10 finishes and four poles.

* FOR THE RECORD... In 11 starts at the one-mile track, Edwards has four top-five and seven top-10 finishes. His average start is 13th, and his average finish is 13.3. Edwards has completed 93.3 percent (3206 of 3436) of laps in Cup competition attempted at Phoenix.

* IN THE LOOP... According to NASCAR's Loop Statistics compiled over the last 11 races at Phoenix, Edwards has turned 191 of the track's fastest laps (fifth most), spent 2,091 laps in the top 15, and has led 87 laps. He has a driver rating of 98.8 (seventh best).

* ON THE TRACK... The No. 99 crew will unload RK-647 for the weekend. Edwards raced this car at Phoenix last fall where he finished 16th. It will have a Subway paint scheme for the first of three races this season.

* HITTING THE PAVEMENT...Phoenix International Raceway is where Edwards made his first start on a track that was not dirt in 2001.

* REWIND, PHOENIX, APRIL 2009... Edwards started the race from 11th position, but from the drop of the green flag reported that his Ford Fusion was "lacking grip," though the team worked on the car throughout the race, the handling woes persisted. Despite the issues, Edwards still managed to wheel the No. 99 to a 10th-place finish.

-source: rfr

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Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Jimmie Johnson , Carl Edwards