BUSCH: Edwards clinches first race win in Atlanta

Carl Edwards clinched his first NASCAR Busch Series career victory at the Atlanta Motor Speedway Saturday on another weekend of double duty. The Roush Racing driver will again take to the track Sunday afternoon for the Nextel Cup race. Edwards,...

Carl Edwards clinched his first NASCAR Busch Series career victory at the Atlanta Motor Speedway Saturday on another weekend of double duty. The Roush Racing driver will again take to the track Sunday afternoon for the Nextel Cup race.

Edwards, who won his first NBS pole just hours earlier today, bested the cream of the crop in Cup racing: Tony Stewart, Jimmie Johnson and Matt Kenseth.

And yes, he did his infamous backflip.

"This is unbelievable. I have to thank a lot of people," commented Edwards before thanking the team owner, crew chief, sponsor and the team. "This is awesome to win from the pole and to come out here and race with guys like Tony Stewart and Jimmie. They're unbelievable, and this is the biggest win of my career."

It was sweet success for Edwards who dominated much of the Las Vegas Busch event last weekend before a flat tire took him out of contention for the win.

"Tony, Jimmie and I were racing earlier in the race. It's a blast to race with those guys. At the end we just had better tires. It made our car look good made me look good. That's how we got by those guys," Edwards said.

Stewart, who grabbed second, showed his winning driving style by charging to the front after dropping to the rear at the start in the Kevin Harvick owned No. 33 Chevrolet. Stewart, never a fan of losing, seemed impressed with Edwards dominating run.

"Every year, there's a rookie who stands out and shows he has a lot of talent and skill," said Stewart. "This is a guy who kind of skipped the Busch level. Now he's got the opportunity to run both series. He's learning a lot."

Cup drivers claimed the first nine positions. Johnson, the third place finisher, doesn't seem affected by suspensions and fines sustained by his Cup team after winning at Las Vegas one week ago. He is poised to perform well in the main event on Sunday.

Johnson led 90 of the 203 laps in his first Busch appearance this year. "We were close," said Johnson. "I think we had the best car there at the end."

The race was slowed by eight caution flags, the very first coming out on the first lap when Ron Hornaday (who won the Truck race Friday) got together with Justin Labonte.

Edwards takes the lead of series standings. Kevin Harvick (who did not run this event) is second (-105) followed by Clint Bowyer (-119), Reed Sorenson (-125) and Martin Truex, Jr. (-127) complete the top five.

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Series NASCAR XFINITY
Drivers Tony Stewart , Kevin Harvick , Ron Hornaday Jr. , Jimmie Johnson , Justin Labonte , Martin Truex Jr. , Carl Edwards , Clint Bowyer , Reed Sorenson