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Edwards Looks Back At His Decisions At Bristol

Jim Pedley | Managing Editor, RacinToday.com Saturday, March 26 2011

Kyle Busch and Carl Edwards raced closely at Bristol last Sunday. But in the end, they raced each other cleanly even though Edwards says he owes Busch a bump or two. (Photo by Geoff Burke/Getty Images for NASCAR)

By Jim Pedley | Managing Editor
RacinToday.com

Last weekend’s Sprint Cup race at Bristol Motor Speedway ended with Carl Edwards chasing Kyle Busch to the finish line. Both drivers played nice and the race ended with Busch winning, Edwards second and the cars of both still in tact.

Friday at Auto Club Speedway, site of Sunday’s Auto Club 400, Edwards was asked about Bristol and his decision to race Busch cleanly down the stretch.

Here is how the Q and A with Edwards went on Friday:

Question: YOU DISCUSSED LAST WEEKEND THAT YOU STILL OWED KYLE BUSH ONE PRIOR TO THE RACE, BUT THEN YOU COULD HAVE TAKEN HIM OUT TO WIN THE RACE BUY YOU DIDN’T. WHY DIDN’T YOU TAKE HIM OUT?

Edwards: “I have thought a lot about last week’s race. I think I did the best I could. I don’t think that my car was fast enough to go up there and compete for the win at the end of the race. On the restarts I was pretty good but we were too far from the end of the race to start running into each other. It could have ended up way worse than a second place finish.”

Question: SO THAT WAS A CONSCIOUS THOUGHT IN YOUR MIND AT THE TIME?

Edwards: “Of course. It is Bristol. I think I did the best job I could. After I thought about it a little bit, I realized that race went pretty well. It was okay. It is hard to finish second. Some guys handle it better than others. Standing there right after the race and knowing you finished second it tough. It is one of the hardest positions in this sport.”

Question: BECAUSE YOU SAID YOU OWED HIM ONE FANS PROBABLY EXPECTED YOU TO TAKE THAT OPPORTUNITY ESPECIALLY SINCE IT PROBABLY WOULD HAVE MEANT YOU WOULD HAVE WON. HAVE YOU TAKEN ANY GRIEF FROM FANS OR PEOPLE ABOUT THAT?

Edwards: “No. It boils down to this. I had my shot to pass him and I couldn’t because I wasn’t fast enough. When things got going, his car was just faster. I couldn’t get back to him. If I could have got to him with one or two laps to go then maybe I could have made something happen. I know that is what all the fans wanted to see. Trust me, nobody wanted to see it more than me. I would have loved to be in that position. As it went, I wasn’t even in position to consider that.”

Question: JEFF BURTON SAID THAT IF YOU ARE GOING TO SAY YOU ARE GOING TO OWE SOMEBODY, JUST DO IT, DON’T KEEP SAYING IT.

Edwards: “Yeah, that is fine. People can say whatever they want. I am going to do what I have to do and say whatever I am going to say. That is me.”

Question: AFTER THE PHOENIX RACE KYLE APOLOGIZED BUT YOU SAY YOU STILL OWE HIM. WHY DO YOU STILL FEEL THAT WAY?

Edwards: “The deal is I am just going to go race how I need to race. It is nothing personal. That deal at Phoenix cost me 28 points at least in my opinion. So, the least he can give up is one spot.  I don’t know. I told him I owed him one and he asked for me to give it back to him at the All-Star race. You never know. Maybe that is how it will go. This is racing guys. You go to Bristol and are on a guys back bumper and you have a chance and you start thinking of all the little things and all the little reasons behind everything. Really it is fine. Hopefully him and I get to race a bunch this year and hopefully it is good clean racing. It might get exciting, you never know.”

Busch was also asked a question about the finish at Bristol:

Question: ARE YOU SURPRISED THAT CARL EDWARDS DIDN’T TRY TO MOVE YOU OUT OF THE WAY AT BRISTOL?

Busch: “He (Carl Edwards) did try. He did get into me once. He bumped me, but it wasn’t like he tried to get into the left-rear quarter panel and spin me out at all. We raced each other hard, we raced each other clean. That was good. If Carl wants to continue saying that he still owes me one, whatever, I don’t care.  I’m racing my race and how I should be racing, and racing all of my competitors and not worrying about all of that stuff. To me, we’re here at California and I’m ready to move and see if we can’t win out here.”

Jim Pedley | Managing Editor, RacinToday.com Saturday, March 26 2011
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