Carl Edwards, driver of the No. 99 Aflac Ford Fusion, carries a 23-point lead in the Sprint Cup point standings, into Sunday’s Fed Ex 400 at Dover International Speedway. Edwards chatted with media members Friday after happy hour practice.
“This is one of my favorite race tracks to come to. We have had fast race cars. Looks like Greg, Matt, David and myself, all of our Fords are fast in practice. Our Nationwide Mustang is super fast, so I am excited about that race tomorrow. We are kind of waiting on the weather and trying to do our best today to practice and cover our bases if it rains. I think we got out-smarted by a couple of those guys. They ran faster laps in the first practice than we did in the second one. I think we would start 13th or 14th if we get rained out. If we do get qualifying in then I think we spent enough time that we would have a good shot at the pole. I do love racing here though and I am excited to be here. I hope we get good weather for the races on Saturday and Sunday.”
WHAT ARE YOUR PLANS FOR NEXT WEEK WITH THE DOUBLE-DUTY BETWEEN CUP AND NATIONWIDE AND CAN YOU COMMENT ON KEVIN SWINDELL WHO IS FILLING IN FOR THE NO. 16 NATIONWIDE CAR THIS WEEKEND. “I don’t exactly know what I am going to do next weekend yet. It will kind of depend on the weather and that is what will dictate how much practice I get in the Nationwide car up in Iowa. My plan is to go back and forth. I will probably leave right after qualifying for the All-Star race, maybe even go back to Columbia, Missouri, spend the night in my bed and fly up to Iowa the next morning. They have the runway right next to the race track and it shouldn’t take much time to get there. We would then come back for the All-Star race, I don’t know, it depends how that race goes. If it goes well and we are up late then I might stay in Charlotte that night and fly to Iowa the next morning. It is kind of fun in a way. I fly my Cessna Citation jet and it is neat to be able to jump out of the race car, jump in the plane and fly to the track. I think I have a whole group of people lined up and going with us, so that should be fun. I was pleasantly surprised to see Jack put Swindell in that Nationwide car. He has proven himself in a lot of different ways as a driver. I have heard a lot of really good things about him. I think that he has a great opportunity this weekend to shock the racing world and show everybody just how fast he is. He has done a great job so far. I am hoping he does well.”
IF WE DO GET RAINED OUT THIS WEEKEND IT LOOKS LIKE JULY IS THE OPEN WEEKEND. WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS ON HAVING TO POSTPONE A RACE LIKE THIS? “We will get the race in. Looking at the way this weather has been, it is real spotty. I believe that we will get the race in. It doesn’t matter to me if we race Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday or Christmas afternoon. This is a fun race track and I think a lot of people will come here and race. It will be a fun race no matter when we race. I believe we will get it in Sunday or Monday. The way the weather has looked to me I think we will be okay.”
WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT THIS TRACK? “The thing I love is the speed. It is so fast and it feels extremely fast when you drive into the corners here. It has so much grip and such high banking. It is only a mile and when you think about the speeds we are running it is pretty spectacular. That is the coolest part, the speed.”
THIS WHOLE ‘BOYS HAVE AT IT’ MENTALITY, ARE WE GETTING A LITTLE COMPLACENT WITH IT. YOU GUYS CAN GET HURT OUT THERE. “I guess that is why we wear helmets. This is auto racing. It is a wild sport. I think NASCAR has done a good job of letting us take care of things ourselves and yes it has gotten out of hand a couple times and I have been a part of that stuff. Right now I am just glad to be leading the points, no controversy, running well, winning races and having fun. It is fine with me right now, everything is good.”