Edwards Wins Richmond: Chase Field Set
Carl Edwards took the lead on a restart with three laps to go and went on to win Saturday night’s Sprint Cup Series race at Richmond International Raceway.
The victory was the second of the season for Edwards, who drives for Roush Fenway Racing.
“We’re gonna win the championship,” Edwards said. “That’s our mission. That seemed like a crazy idea about a month-and-a-half ago, but Jimmy and these guys have buckled down.
Kurt Busch of Furniture Row Racing finished second and Ryan Newman of Stewart-Haas Racing was third. Jamie McMurray finished fourth and Paul Menard fifth.
Decided at Richmond was the field for the Chase for the Sprint Cup Championship – the series’ 12-driver, 10-race playoff.
That field – in seeded order – will consist of Matt Kenseth, Jimmie Johnson, Kyle Busch, Kevin Harvick, Edwards, Joey Logano, Greg Biffle, Clint Bowyer, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Kurt Busch, Kasey Kahne and Martin Truex Jr.
Left out of this year’s Chase is defending champion, Brad Keselowski of Penske Racing. Also left out was four-time champion Jeff Gordon, who looked to have driven his way into the Chase until the final caution bumped him backward, finished eighth. He missed out on being in the Chase by a single point.
“We haven’t had the kind of season this team is capable of,” Gordon, who started the race from the pole, said.
“I don’t really have any emotions right now,” Keselowski, said. “We weren’t good enough to make it and we didn’t. That is the reality.”
His team owner, Roger Penske, said, “Brad has done such a great job and as I told him today before the race, I said that we might not get in but it is like business, you will have some good months and bad months but we have a great company. He has done a great job for us with what he is doing on the Nationwide side as well. He deserved better than he got and I think we let him down a couple of times but overall he is a class guy and a great guy to have on the team and I need to thank him for getting us Joey Logano.”
The Chase begins next weekend at Chicagoland Speedway.
Ryan Newman had just taken the lead with 10 laps to go and appeared headed to the win and a Chase berth, when the final caution of the night came out when Bowyer spun.
After the pit stop, Menard came out the race leader.
Edwards restarted second and quickly took the lead. He easily held off Busch to get the victory.
Newman, despite his podium, was bumped from the Chase.
Bowyer’s spin in effect, put his teammate, Truex Jr., into the Chase.
Several drivers, including Earnhardt Jr., who was behind Bowyer when he spun, said the spin appeared suspicious. He called it the “craziest thing” he’s seen.
(This story will be updated shortly)One Comment