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Carl Edwards Cruises to Victory in All-Star Race

May 22, 2011

Article first published as Carl Edwards Cruises to Victory in All-Star Race on Technorati.

Carl Edwards summed up his night with these words: “Tonight, our car was superior.” And boy was it.

Prior to the restart for the final ten lap segment, competitors were required to make a pit stop and take on four new tires. The lineup would be set by order of pit exit. Edwards won that too.

When asked what was most crucial to his decisive victory, Edwards pointed towards his crew and said, “The key to winning this race are the guys behind me. [Crew chief] Bob Osborne and my guys — especially the guys on pit road — they could have dropped the ball. That’s all the pressure in the world on those guys.

“They performed a flawless pit stop, and we got out in front of Kyle. He is a bear on those restarts, and if we had started behind him, I think it would have been really tough. It’s unbelievable. I feel so bad about tearing up the car, but Bob says he has a faster one for next week [for the Coca-Cola 600], so I’m pretty excited.”

The other key to victory was waiting until after you take the checker flag to destroy your race car. During a celebratory slide through the infield grass the front splitter dug into the sod and totally wiped out the front of his Aflac Ford. Carl’s obligatory back-flip is contrasted by the steam pouring from the decimated race-car, a testament to his only mistake of the night.

Edwards crossed the finish line nearly a half second ahead of second place Kyle Busch. His record in this event has been noticeably dismal, failing to finish in four of the last five All-Star races.

Busch conceded to Carl’s performance. “He was just so good through the corner. Once he got his car turned, he didn’t even have to finish turning his car. It would kind of turn, and he would hammer the throttle, and it would just continue to turn and just drive up off the corner. Tonight we just flat got beat.”

David Reutimann came in third, Tony Stewart fourth, and Greg Biffle, who led the most laps of tonight [46], came in fifth. Matt Kenseth sixth, Denny Hamlin in seventh, followed by David Ragan, Kevin Harvick and Ryan Newman to round out the top ten.

Fan favorite Dale Earnhardt Jr. finished a disappointing fourteenth.

For his victory, Edwards took home $1.2 million dollars, the most ever in an All-Star event.

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