Start 'N' Park Blog

Edwards Picks Up First Road Course Win At Sonoma

Toyota_Save_Mart_300_14_Sonoma_Race_Winner_Carl_Edwards

Toyota_Save_Mart_300_14_Sonoma_VickersRoush Fenway Racing is struggling? Don’t tell that to Carl Edwards, he led 26 laps and picked up his first road course win and second win of the season in the Toyota Save Mart 350. Using pit strategy of only two stops, Edwards finished 0.592 seconds ahead of a closing Jeff Gordon. Dale Earnhardt, Jr., Jamie McMurray, and Paul Menard rounded out the top-4 finishers.

“That’s a moment I’ll never forget, to be standing in victory lane and to have held off Jeff Gordon with all of the success he’s had here and in our sport. It’s just really, really special.  I’m living proof that right here that whatever it is you’re doing just keep doing it and don’t ever give up because somehow things can work out.  I’m just very fortunate,” Edwards told TNT in Victory Lane. “Literally, I’m a fan of this sport and I grew up watching Jeff Gordon go through those esses and watching how he drove his car, so to be able to hold him off like that means a lot.  I’m glad there wasn’t one or two more laps in the race because I don’t know if it would have worked out that way, but it definitely meant a lot to have Jeff Gordon in my mirror.”

Gordon was a few laps from catching Edwards despite what the final time sheet said. He estimated it was about five to six laps he would have needed. “I was making some ground up on (race winner) Carl (Edwards). I was good in the fast sections and he was pretty good in the slow sections. So, I was having to hit everything so perfect. And I just overdrove it into (Turn) 4 one time and went real wide off and that gave him enough of a gap that I had to close it back in and I just couldn’t put enough pressure on him. And I think had I put some more pressure on him; I saw him really struggling with the grip level. He drove a clean race and he did everything you need to do,” commented Gordon after the race.

The first road race of the Sprint Cup Series lived up to its billing with drivers getting into each other early and often over the course of the 110 laps around the Sonoma Raceway. The list of drivers involved in incidents included Kyle Busch, Brad Keselowski, Matt Kenseth, Clint Bowyer, Kevin Harvick, Dale Earnhardt, Jr., Ricky Stenhouse, Jr., Brian Vickers, and AJ Allmendinger.

Allmendinger started on the outside pole and led a race high 35 laps. Strategy put him back in the field, then contact with Earnhardt resulted in damage sustained from the wall and other cars. After repairs on his car he finished 37th place.

The pole sitter was Jamie McMurray, who came home fourth. The Chip Ganassi Racing driver stayed up front, but did cause some controversy after contact with Clint Bowyer. Bowyer went around and was collected by Kevin Harvick. Harvick had a strong run, leading 23 laps, and was able to finish 20th with a mangled car. Bowyer finished 10th despite the damage, he also led five laps.

There was no real shake up in the driver standings based on the strong runs by all. Jeff Gordon maintains his lead in the standings over Jimmie Johnson, Dale Earnhardt, Jr., Matt Kenseth, and Brad Keselowski. Kenseth crashed out after contact with Earnhardt on lap 74 and Keselowski had a miserable day finishing 22nd.

Next up for the Sprint Cup Series is the Kentucky Speedway on Saturday, June 28th. The Quaker State 400 gets underway at 7:30 PM EST and fans can catch the action on TNT.

Fin St # Driver Sponsor Car Laps Money Status Led Pts
1 4 99 Carl Edwards Aflac Ford 110 $335,790 Running 26 47
2 15 24 Jeff Gordon Panasonic Chevrolet 110 $238,266 Running 3 43
3 17 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr Kelley Blue Book Chevrolet 110 $167,230 Running 0 41
4 1 1 Jamie McMurray Cessna Chevrolet 110 $185,869 Running 9 41
5 9 27 Paul Menard Richmond/Menards Chevrolet 110 $147,344 Running 0 39
6 30 5 Kasey Kahne Great Clips Chevrolet 110 $126,870 Running 0 38
7 22 48 Jimmie Johnson Lowe’s Chevrolet 110 $157,431 Running 1 38
8 23 9 Marcos Ambrose DeWalt Ford 110 $137,340 Running 5 37
9 19 16 Greg Biffle 3M Ford 110 $143,820 Running 0 35
10 25 15 Clint Bowyer 5-Hour Energy Toyota 110 $136,411 Running 5 35
11 7 31 Ryan Newman Caterpillar Chevrolet 110 $107,785 Running 0 33
12 5 41 Kurt Busch Haas Automation Chevrolet 110 $101,635 Running 0 32
13 12 13 Casey Mears GEICO Chevrolet 110 $129,543 Running 0 31
14 8 55 Brian Vickers Aaron’s Dream Machine Toyota 110 $128,910 Running 0 30
15 18 78 Martin Truex Jr Furniture Row Chevrolet 110 $123,643 Running 0 29
16 10 22 Joey Logano Shell Pennzoil Ford 110 $132,326 Running 3 29
17 26 3 Austin Dillon Dow Chevrolet 110 $141,596 Running 0 27
18 11 10 Danica Patrick GoDaddy Chevrolet 110 $102,310 Running 0 26
19 21 14 Tony Stewart Mobil 1 / Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet 110 $127,743 Running 0 25
20 6 4 Kevin Harvick Outback / Budweiser Folds of Honor Chevrolet 110 $131,193 Running 23 25
21 27 38 David Gilliland Love’s Travel Stops Ford 110 $116,068 Running 0 23
22 13 2 Brad Keselowski Alliance Truck Parts Ford 110 $133,268 Running 0 22
23 29 43 Aric Almirola Nathan’s Famous Ford 110 $127,671 Running 0 21
24 28 95 Michael McDowell K-LOVE Radio Ford 110 $86,785 Running 0 20
25 20 18 Kyle Busch M&M’s Pretzel Toyota 110 $134,701 Running 0 19
26 16 11 Denny Hamlin FedEx Freight Toyota 110 $97,035 Running 0 18
27 32 26 Cole Whitt Rinnai Tankless Water Heaters Toyota 110 $88,385 Running 0 17
28 3 42 Kyle Larson Target Chevrolet 110 $114,555 Running 0 16
29 38 23 Alex Bowman Dr. Pepper Toyota Camry Toyota 110 $101,643 Running 0 15
30 42 7 Michael Annett Pilot / Flying J Chevrolet Chevrolet 110 $100,493 Running 0 14
31 24 17 Ricky Stenhouse Jr EcoPower Oil Ford 109 $122,485 Running 0 13
32 40 36 Reed Sorenson Theme Park Connection Chevrolet 109 $93,537 Running 0 12
33 35 51 Justin Allgaier BRANDT Professional Agriculture Chevrolet 109 $91,880 Running 0 11
34 39 44 J.J. Yeley Phoenix Warehouse Chevrolet 109 $83,745 Running 0 0
35 41 32 Boris Said 7eleven/AmeriGas Ford 109 $83,605 Running 0 9
36 31 34 David Ragan Long John Silver’s Ford 109 $91,520 Running 0 8
37 2 47 AJ Allmendinger Kingsford-Clorox Chevrolet 108 $89,983 Running 35 9
38 43 66 Tomy Drissi MightyHercules.com Toyota 108 $85,850 Running 0 6
39 36 33 Alex Kennedy Media Cast Chevrolet 104 $73,850 Rear Gear 0 5
40 33 98 Josh Wise Dogecoin/Reddit.com Chevrolet 95 $69,850 Running 0 4
41 34 83 Ryan Truex Burger King Toyota Camry Toyota 91 $65,850 Running 0 3
42 14 20 Matt Kenseth Dollar General Toyota 74 $110,986 Accident 0 2
43 37 40 Landon Cassill Carsforsale.com Chevrolet 29 $58,350 Engine 0 0