Edwards bumps Busch for Bristol win
|Sunday, August 24th 2008, 08:02 GMT|
Carl Edwards took victory in the Sharpie 500 at Bristol Motor Speedway after passing the dominant Kyle Busch with a bump'n'run in the closing stages of the race, the pair leading 499 of the race's 500 laps between them.
However, after the chequered flag fell, the battle between the two drivers who had fought for the win continued, Busch slamming into the side of Edwards' car on his victory lap, before Edwards repaid the favour and spun Busch.
Afterwards, Edwards said he needed to nudge Busch out the way when he passed him to get through to the lead.
"That was one of those deals where I couldn't get by him," said Edwards. "I had to ask myself, 'Would he do that to me?' And he has before, and that's the way it goes.
"I just kind of ran into him. That's what happened... I have a lot of respect for the guy, and he was real fast, but we can't give up points when they're right there for us to take.
"Let's make it real clear - I'm not apologizing for it."
That Edwards admitted to making the contact didn't affect how Busch felt about the contact: "No, because he does that, and he'll always come back and say he's sorry. He did it at Milwaukee (in the Nationwide race), and he's done it a few other times. It's just his normal fashion. That's fine. I've grown to know that."
The post-race contact between the two drivers saw Busch summoned to the NASCAR transporter after the race to explain his actions.
It all started after a late caution, ironically brought out by debris from the car of Kyle's older brother Kurt, which gave Edwards the opportunity he needed to take the lead, as he hung on to the leader's rear bumper after the restart.
Edwards got close enough to give Busch a bump'n'run to take the lead on lap 470, Busch immediately repaying the favour but unable to retake the lead. From that point on Edwards edged away to take the win.
Busch, who led about 400 of the race's 500 laps, was now under threat from Denny Hamlin, who took second from Busch on lap 472, only to see Busch retake the place eight laps later.
Hamlin then had worries behind as well as in front, with Kevin Harvick and Jeff Gordon chasing him home to the flag.
Ryan Newman, Clint Bowyer, Tony Stewart, Matt Kenseth and David Ragan completed the top ten finishers.
However, an incident earlier in the race hurt a couple of runners in their hopes for the chase. A multi-car crash caused by contact between Casey Mears and Michael Waltrip led to a red flag after cars were left strewn across the course.
Clint Bowyer clipped Mears as he tried to avoid him, and got away with minor damage. However Kasey Kahne was left with nowhere to go, his race over after his car suffered severe damage, dropping him three places to 14th in the points, 56 points outside the chase with two races to go.
A couple of favourites for the race also had their problems - Dale Earnhardt Jr jumped the start of the race and was penalised, losing a lap which he was never able to get back, finishing 18th.
However, he moved up a place in the points after teammate Jimmie Johnson damaged his car in early contact with Sterling Marlin, Johnson finishing 33rd, 18 laps behind the winner.
Pos Driver Make Laps 1. Carl Edwards Ford 500 2. Kyle Busch Toyota 500 3. Denny Hamlin Toyota 500 4. Kevin Harvick Chevrolet 500 5. Jeff Gordon Chevrolet 500 6. Ryan Newman Dodge 500 7. Clint Bowyer Chevrolet 500 8. Tony Stewart Toyota 500 9. Matt Kenseth Ford 500 10. David Ragan Ford 500 11. Greg Biffle Ford 500 12. Jamie McMurray Ford 500 13. Aric Almirola Chevrolet 500 14. Regan Smith Chevrolet 500 15. Kurt Busch Dodge 500 16. Paul Menard Chevrolet 499 17. Tony Raines Chevrolet 499 18. Dale Earnhardt Jr Chevrolet 498 19. Juan Montoya Dodge 498 20. Brian Vickers Toyota 498 21. Ken Schrader Toyota 498 22. David Gilliland Ford 498 23. Bobby Labonte Dodge 498 24. Travis Kvapil Ford 498 25. David Reutimann Toyota 497 26. Bill Elliott Ford 497 27. Scott Riggs Chevrolet 496 28. Mike Skinner Toyota 496 29. Joe Nemechek Chevrolet 494 30. Michael Waltrip Toyota 492 31. Kyle Petty Dodge 491 32. Elliott Sadler Dodge 490 33. Jimmie Johnson Chevrolet 482 34. A.J. Allmendinger Toyota 400 35. Martin Truex Jr Chevrolet 396 36. Reed Sorenson Dodge 383 37. Sam Hornish Jr Dodge 297 38. Dave Blaney Toyota 279 39. Robby Gordon Dodge 227 40. Kasey Kahne Dodge 215 41. Casey Mears Chevrolet 214 42. Jeff Burton Chevrolet 195 43. Sterling Marlin Chevrolet 184