* Getting The Point: Edwards' Learning Curve Aids In His Series Lead * Jeff Burton Fastest During Tuesday's Afternoon Test Session At Home Track * Testing Concludes Wednesday; First Open Week Of Season Follows DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (March 27,...
* Getting The Point: Edwards' Learning Curve Aids In His Series Lead
* Jeff Burton Fastest During Tuesday's Afternoon Test Session At Home Track
* Testing Concludes Wednesday; First Open Week Of Season Follows
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (March 27, 2007) -- It's not that Carl Edwards (No. 60 Scott's Ford) hasn't had success in the NASCAR Busch Series.
The current points leader finished second in the series standings last year after a third-place showing following his first full-time season in 2005.
What had eluded Edwards, however, was being consistent in understanding that racing to his abilities and not trying to exceed his limits equaled better finishes.
"We're having great luck doing everything right and leading the points," said Edwards prior to the first of two days of testing at Richmond International Raceway. "I'm really focused right now."
How Edwards has arrived at his focal point -- securing the 2007 NASCAR Busch Series championship -- had been a wild ride up to this point for the 27-year-old from Columbia, Mo., who has climbed the NASCAR ladder from the rungs of the modifieds to the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series to the NASCAR Busch Series and on to the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series.
"It's amazing how much things change," he said. "Five years ago, I was living at my mom's house. [Now] it's cool to be here having a lot of fun racing at the highest levels of our sport. I'm a better points racer at twice the pace."
Edwards, hardly one to stay "inside the box" personality-wise, pointed out that at times it's best to color within the lines.
"(Team owner) Jack (Roush) says you have [to know the] edge of your box," Edwards said, outlining a box with two index fingers. "For me to figure out how hard I can go and still do the right thing in the long run has taken me a little while but I feel pretty good about that now."
Case in point: last Saturday at Bristol Motor Speedway he stayed patient during the caution-filled event and came away with his first win of the season and the 10th of his series career.
Early on, Edwards had the better car yet resisted the temptation to move pole winner Steve Wallace (No. 66 HomeLife Communities Dodge) out of the way. Instead, he worked through his spotter to urge the younger Wallace to yield and went on to take the lead and ultimately capture the win.
"You can't have any wounds that are self-inflicted," he said. "If you have a 10th-place car that day you need to run 10th.
"That's the biggest thing I've learned and it's paying off a lot."
VIRGINIA NATIVE JEFF BURTON POSTS FASTEST TIME IN TUESDAY'S AFTERNOON SESSION
Jeff Burton (No. 29B Holiday Inn Chevrolet), a native of South Boston, Va., and winner of two NASCAR Busch Series races thus far in 2007, posted the fastest time of the first testing session at Richmond with a lap of 21.554 seconds (125.267 mph). Burton also had the fourth-fastest time (21.758/124.092) in his "A" car.
Series regular Stephen Leicht (No. 90B CitiFinancial Ford) was sixth-fastest in the first session. The 20-year-old had a fast lap of 21.817 seconds (123.757).
Testing concludes on Tuesday following two sessions from 1 -- 5:00 p.m. and 6 -- 9:00 p.m. After the test, the drivers and teams of the NASCAR Busch Series will take advantage of the first open week on the 2007 competition schedule before resuming April 7 at Nashville Superspeedway.