Posted: May 20, 2012 10:13 AM
CONCORD, NC -- Carl Edwards came into the Sprint All-Star race as the defending winner, but unfortunately was not able to return to victory lane this year. Engine troubles in the second segment of the race ended his night early in the No. 99 Fastenal Ford.
Edwards started the race in 13th place and worked his way up to ninth by the end of the first 20-lap segment. He came to pit road for a two-tire stop and returned to the track in 10th place for the next 20-lap segment.
Only five laps into the second segment Edwards radioed to the team that the engine had blown up and their night was over. He was able to coast to the garage for the team to begin diagnosing the exact problem. He finished the race 23rd.
Jimmie Johnson won the race followed by Brad Keselowski, Matt Kenseth, Kyle Busch and Dale Earnhardt Jr. Kevin Harvick, Marcos Ambrose, Kurt Busch, Kasey Kahne and Ryan Newman rounded out the top 10.
"Something broke, but we had the car taped up and we were running as hard as we could," Edwards said. "The water and oil were 280, 290 degrees the whole time, so we were doing all we could. Last year was so awesome winning this thing. You might have lost a driver out of this race, but you gained a fan. I'm going to go watch the rest of this thing. It's insane back there in traffic. I don't know what the front of the race is like, but where I was it was insane.
"Our Fastenal team was geared up. We were running really well the first segment and I knew something wasn't right there. I'm just glad nobody ran me over because it's a really fast race car. This is not where I wanted to be, but I learned how hard you can push Doug Yates' engines. I had red lights on the dash the whole time. We had it taped up too much trying to get too much downforce and we just broke it. We went all-out and it didn't work. That's the hardest we've run one of these engines in a long time. I've never seen that water temp and that oil temp in a race car for that long and have it live, so I'm pretty proud of Doug and the guys that it made it as long as it did."
The Sprint Cup Series returns to Charlotte Motor Speedway next weekend for the longest race of the year, the Coca-Cola 600 on Sunday, May 27. Coverage will begin at 5:00 p.m. (CT) on FOX.