Rain at Watkins Glen cancelled both practice and qualifying in the Cup series on Friday, so the field was set according to the rule book. Carl Edwards, driver of the No. 99 Office Depot Ford Fusion, will start third in Sunday’s race.
CARL EDWARDS – No. 99 Office Depot Ford Fusion –YOUR THOUGHTS HEADING INTO WATKINS GLEN AFTER WINNING AT POCONO LAST WEEKEND. “Last week was awesome. I feel like our team has run real well. We were extremely fast the last time we were here. We didn’t win the race, we were going to run second – that’s when I ran off the end of the track with my bonsai sand trap move there. I really like racing here. The road courses are something that I have worked hard at and had a lot of help from guys like Boris Said, my teammates, and it’s really fun to come back to. It’s fun for me because we don’t really have any pressure right now; we can go out here and have a good time and go for a win.”
YOU WILL BE STARTING IN FRONT OF SOME VERY GOOD ROAD RACERS. WILL THAT BE AN ADVANTAGE RIGHT OFF THE BAT FOR YOU? “Well, yeah. I would’ve liked a chance to qualify, just like everyone, but starting third, that won’t be a bad position, that’s for sure. A lot can happen here. I hope – we haven’t been on the track yet – but I hope our car is as strong as it was the last time we were here, and Sonoma. At Sonoma we started 12th and we were getting ready to pass for the lead and the first caution came out. I felt like we had an amazing car that day, and we screwed up out pit strategy. But, starting third is good. If you can start third every week and not go out there and risk everything qualifying, then you’d probably end up a lot better than qualifying.”
HOW MUCH OF AN ADVANTAGE WILL IT BE THAT YOU DID GET TO PRACTICE IN THE NATIONWIDE SERIES TODAY? “Yeah, that’s a good question. I think these road courses – at this point in my career, especially – running the Nationwide race helps me. It looks like we will get all of our race practice in tomorrow on the Cup side, so the guys that are fast here, it’s not going to slow them down not being in the Nationwide car, but I feel like it helps me just to get all my timing down and my marks and find some spots on the race track. So, hopefully, we et this Nationwide race in tomorrow. That would be really neat. It doesn’t look like rain tomorrow, I don’t think, though, from what they’re saying.”
WHAT DO YOU THINK NOW ABOUT RACING IN THE RAIN AT MONTREAL LAST WEEKEND? WHAT ARE YOU THINKING ABOUT WHAT CAN BE DONE BETTER? “The first thing is we’ll put a windshield wiper on our car. We’ve got one there, and that’s a big step. But, I thought it went really well. The fans seemed to enjoy it. They were as animated as I’ve ever seen fans, even with their ponchos and umbrellas and all that. Everybody was really pumped. I thought it was an interesting race. It probably won’t happen very often, but I think when it does, I thought NASCAR did a great job, I thought the calls, were right on. They let us race when it was raceable, and they shut it off and threw the red flag right when it was getting to the point of a little fear. It’s tough. So, that’s a great test, and I think in the future we can run and do the same thing and be fine.”