By admin | March 7, 2012
By Richard Allen
Itâ€™s hard to believe but a look at the calendar reveals it has been one full year since Carl Edwards last won a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race. It was in the third event of the 2011 season at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway that the driver of the #99 Roush Fenway Racing Ford last performed one of his famed post-race back flips in celebration of a victory in the sportâ€˜s top division.
This weekend, the Sprint Cup Series makes its annual trip to LVMS for the only race of this season in which Edwards will be introduced as the defending champion.
That fact seems almost unbelievable considering how competitive the Missouri native always seems to be. A long term memory is not really required to recall that less than four months ago Edwards had just finished in a tie with Tony Stewart in the final series standings only to lose out on what would have been his first Sprint Cup championship by virtue of a tie-breaker.
Edwardsâ€™ statistics since the beginning of 2011 have been very impressive and make the fact that he has now been winless for 36 consecutive races seem all the more hard to believe. He finished in the top-5 in more than half of the races held last season(19 of 36). Remarkably, eight of those top-5 results were 2nd places.
The popular driver ranked first in the Sprint Cup standings for 22 of the 36 weeks during the 2011 season.
And Edwardsâ€™ strong showings havenâ€™t been limited to race day. In 2011 he scored three pole positions during time-trials and he began this current season with a fastest in qualifying effort for the Daytona 500 last month.
A study of Carl Edwardsâ€™ statistics from the last 38 races make it seem impossible that he has now gone a full year without a victory, but he has. On a positive note, however, the track in Las Vegas has been a good one for him. He has won two times out of the last four visits there by the Sprint Cup Series.
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