Worst to First or How Edwards Won at ORP


First off, I admit that the title is misleading since Carl Edwards did not start dead last, but rather from the 42nd starting position. But I digress as Edwards did "flip-out" before the night was done; winning the Kroger 200 at O'Reily (don't call me Indianapolis) Raceway Park.

Edwards was forced to start at the rear of the field after missing ORP qualifying to practice his Cup ride just north of the "little track". His starting spot, along with a botched pit stop on lap 170, made no difference as Edwards fended off Kyle Busch in the closing laps to win his second Nationwide trophy of 2009.

"While I was searching for gears, Kyle Busch got ahead of us," Edwards said. "The 18 car [Busch] had a good stop, and then the race was on. It was a pretty good battle. It was a lot of fun. That was hard, hard racing.

"It meant a lot to get the win here. This is a very special race for me."

Despite only a second place finish, Busch edged closer to history on Saturday night, becoming just the second Nationwide driver to reach eight consecutive 1st-or-2nd place finishes. That mark is one less than series legend Jack Ingram's 1983 record. Not to say that the younger Busch is happy finishing second:

"It was a tough, hard-fought battle," Busch said of his race with Edwards. "We had what we had and we gave it all we could and we came up short. He was better than us all night, and he proved it driving by us on the run before and just getting to my inside all of the time. If my car was as good as his, I should've been able to stay ahead of him or drive away."

Edwards won the battle Saturday night but Busch is winning the war. Edwards picked up just 20 points on circuit leader Busch who leads the standings by 192 points. Brad Keselowski, Jason Leffler and Joey Logano wrap up the top five.

Details on the Kroger 200 after the fold.

Kroger 200 Top-10:

1. Carl Edwards

2. Kyle Busch

3. Matt Kenseth

4. Brad Keselowski

5. Steve Wallace

6. Ron Hornaday

7. Trevor Bayne

8. Jason Leffler

9. Scott Wimmer

10. Kenny Wallace

Nationwide Point Standings:

1. Kyle Busch, 3,296

2. Carl Edwards, -192

3. Brad Keselowski, -392

4. Jason Leffler, -506

5. Joey Logano, - 901

6. Justin Allgaier, -926

7. Mike Bliss, -943

8. Steve Wallace, -995

9. Brendan Gaughan, -1019

10. Jason Keller, -1052


Next time on Nationwide Weekly  Z - Iowa...

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