Has anybody seen Carl Edwards? Did I somehow miss the newsflash that he was enjoying the married life so much that he decided to retire? Maybe he’s been abucted by aliens, getting zapped with the Q-36 Space Modulator by Marvin Martian, resulting in a mystical, Spock-like “unracey” force that now fogs Edwards’ brain.
Yeah, that’s it. That’s the ticket.
Am I the only who feels like the guy behind the “99″ has been M.I.A. in 2009? Oh don’t get me wrong- I have this faint recollection that Flipper finished 3rd in A-town and he was decent in on my old hometown track in Cali- but that ain’t the Carl Edwards I know.
The 2008 Carl Edwards, you know the “real” Carl Edwards already had two wins by now. If not for the infamous “oil tank lid? It must have evaporated” incident, he might very well have been the guy to snuff out that his historic 3-peat by Jimmie Johnson. After all, it was the Missouri Missile that won a season-high 9 races.
Where’s “THAT” Carl Edwards been?
Yeah, I know- Martinsville is Edwards’ kryptonite.True, but what about Bristol? Home to the famous bump ‘n’ run incident with Kyle Busch on the way to victory lane last summer? The weak finish in Thunder Valley seems to suggest that “Team 99″ is not hitting on all cylinders.
I really don’t have an answer myself. On top of whatever other problems he may have, FOX must think Edwards is the Invisible Man. I don’t really buy the idea it is a “Roush thing.” After all, Jamie Mac got a top 10 at M-ville, Matty K. reeled off two wins to open the schedule, Greg Biffle was also a contender before getting his own case of “Carl-itis.” David Ragan? Sorry- I’ve never been a believer- though I keep hearing he’s supposed to be Jack Roush’s answer to sliced bread.
Well, WHATEVER the problems are, take heart Flipper fans, help is on the way. Edwards pretty well close to owns Texas Motor Speedway with 3 career wins at the track- making him the all-time leader here. The Roush Gang is always good on the intermediates. Teammates Matt Kenseth and Greg Biffle have wins here, and Jamie Mc Murray has made good showings in the Lone Star State.
From there -it’s on to Phoenix, where Edwards is quite capable, Talladega, where’ll look to atone for last season’s temporary loss of reasoning, and he should be rock solid right up until Infineon. So I guess what I’m saying is I expect we’ll see the return of Carl Edwards quite shortly- making noise and making a run to the front.
I mean it’s not like he’s in (ahem) in “some other racer you know’s” shoes where fans are frustrated- calling for the crew chief’s head on a stick and questioning his team’s commitment to him. It’s just weird. 2009 has started very differently for Edwards than 2008 did, and the fact we expect better than 8th place in the points says something about a fan’s lofty standards.
I suspect the evil fairy dust Edwards has been sprinkled with will begin to wear off and front runners better beware. Jack Roush has a deep bench, but Cousin Carl’s his “Franchise” or “The Big Ticket” as they might say in Beantown. He’ll take the checkered or wreck ‘er trying.
**NO FEAR “EARN SOME CRED” COMMENT OF THE DAY AWARD**
The competition was fierce today, but congratulations go out to “bikeguy” for making the “Comment Of The Day.” Bike Guy wins a No Fear Energy hoodie as a daily prize winner in No Fear’s “Earn Some Cred” promotion. Bike Guy will go into the Grand Prize drawing to be held this Sunday.
You can win too, and today’s non-winners are welcome to give it another go. Make a comment on today’s post for your chance to win. For more No Fear gear, go to www.earnsomecred.com. Entrants must be a resident of the United States, limit one daily winner per household. Bump Drafts writers, contributors and their families not eligible.
PHOTO CREDITS- Carl in car by Ford Racing, Edwards victory flip by rebilasphoto. To see more, visit flickr.com.