Penalised Edwards not backing down

Carl Edwards accepted NASCAR penalties imposed on him after his incident with Brad Keselowski in a Nationwide Series event last weekend, but said he will not back down with rivals trying to race him as aggressively as the Penske driver

Penalised Edwards not backing down

Edwards was docked points, fined and placed on probation in all NASCAR series this week after he intentionally crashed into Keselowski on the last corner at Gateway International Raceway last Saturday, on the last lap of a race in the second-tier series.

Speaking at Indianapolis, where he is set to race Keselowski again in both the Sprint Cup and Nationwide events, the Roush Fenway racer said the penalties were fair, and that he accepted it had been unfair to get other drivers caught up in his feud - as a number of cars collected Keselowski's Penske Dodge at high speed as it spun during the Gateway incident. Although no one was driver, many drivers ended up with badly damaged cars.

"Immediately after the race last week I felt like what I did was right and it was a fair outcome to the race, and I felt like it was within NASCAR's boundaries that they had set," Edwards said.

"I think NASCAR felt the same way right then, but then as the week went on, I had the chance to talk to [NASCAR president] Mike Helton and I understand and respect that those other teams that were caught up in that wreck that Brad and I had initiated... those guys are working hard.

"I've been in that position, working hard for sponsorship and working hard for finishes, and I feel that NASCAR's penalty is fair. I talked to Jack and Geoff Smith and I don't plan on appealing it. I think it's fair in that respect. I sincerely apologise to those guys that were caught up in that wreck."

However Edwards did not go as far as saying his feud with Keselowski was over and refused to say whether he would act differently if placed under the same circumstances by his rival again. He also said he considered the probation NASCAR imposed on Keselowski as an admission that he was not the only one at fault in their clash at Gateway.

"We'll see what the future holds," said Edwards. "I race hard and I'm not going to let somebody take advantage of me, that's for sure. I've proven that, and I've been consistent about it, and I've been honest about it, too, which, I don't think has helped me any, but I've been honest about it.

"There's nothing personal between Brad and I - from my side there's not. I have a lot of respect for him and what he does on the racetrack, but the problem is that he can't just run into me to get an advantage, especially for wins. That's happened way too much between us.

"I can accept my penalty, but I'm happy that NASCAR recognised that Brad needed to be penalised too."

Keselowski for his part said the probation placed on him did not come as a surprise and that the feedback he has received from fans makes him think that he did nothing wrong.

"I don't know why, [the penalty] didn't seem to really bother me," he said. "There were some of my fans that got really upset about it. I did an autograph signing and they were pretty excited about it. I respect that. That's been the coolest part, to listen to your fan base. To get the emails or phone calls from the fans, even your friends and family to support you makes it a lot easier to deal with.

"I wouldn't say [I'm]surprised. To me, what that says is NASCAR doesn't want me to go out there and intentionally retaliate against Carl, which is great. I don't want to. I'm glad that they took that away. Now I don't have to worry about that."

The pair will race each other on Saturday night at O'Reilly Raceway Park, a race Edwards won last year and where Keselowski, who leads the Nationwide standings, finished fourth.

shares
comments
Reutimann extends Waltrip deal
Previous article

Reutimann extends Waltrip deal

Next article

Montoya takes Indianapolis pole

Montoya takes Indianapolis pole
Load comments
How NASCAR is gearing up for its "biggest change" in 2022 Plus

How NASCAR is gearing up for its "biggest change" in 2022

It’s not just Formula 1 that’s set for upheaval in 2022, as the NASCAR Cup Series adopts its Next Gen cars that will cast any in-built advantages aside and require teams to adopt a totally new way of operating. Far more than just a change of machinery, the new cars amount to a shift in NASCAR's core philosophy

NASCAR
Oct 12, 2021
Why Bubba Wallace’s Talladega win is such a big moment for NASCAR Plus

Why Bubba Wallace’s Talladega win is such a big moment for NASCAR

Bubba Wallace claimed his maiden NASCAR Cup Series at Talladega on Monday to become the first Black victor in the category since Wendell Scott in 1963. Both Wallace and Scott had faced obstacles and racism in their paths to their breakthrough wins, and NASCAR is trying to put it right with its range of diversity programmes

NASCAR
Oct 5, 2021
Why NASCAR's most resilient driver has landed on his feet at 23XI Plus

Why NASCAR's most resilient driver has landed on his feet at 23XI

In a career that has had many ups and downs, Kurt Busch has been written off many times before. But facing career uncertainty after the sale of Chip Ganassi's NASCAR team, the 2004 Cup champion has found a new berth at Denny Hamlin and Michael Jordan's 23XI organisation - which underlines his enduring value

NASCAR
Aug 31, 2021
The F1 nearly-man winding back the clock in NASCAR’s European cousin Plus

The F1 nearly-man winding back the clock in NASCAR’s European cousin

A multiple F3000 race winner, Marc Goossens was on the precipice of making Formula 1 in the 1990s - but a lack of budget left him without a path to the promised land. Turning to an illustrious racing career in sportscars, Goossens left the endurance circuit to try his hand at racing stock cars - and now calls the NASCAR Euro Series home

NASCAR
Jul 1, 2021
Why a British prospect is trying to make it in NASCAR Plus

Why a British prospect is trying to make it in NASCAR

There has never been a full-time British driver in the NASCAR Cup. But Alex Sedgwick, who is rising through the stock car ranks, wants that to change and could be a trailblazer for European talents to reach the top echelons of the NASCAR ladder

NASCAR
Feb 28, 2021
How Earnhardt’s death changed American motorsport Plus

How Earnhardt’s death changed American motorsport

It's 20 years since legendary driver Dale Earnhardt Sr died at the Daytona 500, but the legacy of his crash continues today through the pioneering safety work done by NASCAR

NASCAR
Feb 18, 2021
The NASCAR subplots to keep an eye on in 2021 Plus

The NASCAR subplots to keep an eye on in 2021

This weekend's Daytona 500 kickstarts a NASCAR Cup season that promises plenty of intrigue courtesy of new owners and a refreshed calendar. Here's what you need to know ahead of the new season

NASCAR
Feb 12, 2021
How a second-chance NASCAR ace is rebuilding his career Plus

How a second-chance NASCAR ace is rebuilding his career

From a disgraced NASCAR exile, Kyle Larson has been given a shot at redemption by the powerhouse Hendrick Motorsports squad. Replacing seven-time champion Jimmie Johnson is no easy billing, but Larson has every intention of repaying the team's faith

NASCAR
Feb 11, 2021