EDWARDS TOO STRONG FOR NATIONWIDE FIELD
NASCAR Nationwide Series Champion Keselowski Finishes Fourth in WYPALL 200
Carl Edwards’ Copart Ford simply was too strong for a stout field in the WYPALL * 200 Powered by Kimberly Clark NASCAR Nationwide Series race at Phoenix International Raceway today. Each time Edwards was threatened, he was able to pull away from a variety of challengers that included Kyle Busch, Kevin Harvick, polesitter Joey Logano and Brad Keselowski.
Edwards led nearly every lap after claiming the lead from Aric Almirola on lap 37. That pass came shortly after a restart, a strong suit for Edwards all race long.
“It was unbelievable how fast it (his no. 60 car) was; it was the fastest race car I ever had,” said Edwards. He led 153 of 200 laps, including the last 56.
The only time a restart even partially failed Edwards was on lap 143 when Busch forced his NOS Toyota on the outside of Edwards coming off PIR’s legendary turn two. Busch maintained a small edge for most of a lap but was overtaken by the race winner.
Busch soon suffered a cut right front tire and was forced to pit under green. Busch passed several cars as he gamely attempted to get back on the lead lap and finally made it with 10 to go. However, there was simply no chance of catching Edwards, and Busch finished 16th.
Edwards extended his margin of victory to more than five seconds over second-place Harvick, who said: “Our Rheem Chevy was really good. We got a little behind him (Edwards) making our way through traffic.”
Keselowski, who clinched the Nationwide Series championship last week at Texas, took two tires on a mid-race pit stop to gain 22 spots. He made it hold up, finishing fourth.
Scottsdale, Az., resident Danica Patrick struggled through a trying afternoon in her first season of NASCAR racing as she was bumped several times on the way to a cut tire, and tap of the wall, ending with a 32nd-place finish.
Tickets are available for tomorrow’s Kobalt Tools 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event at Phoenix International Raceway. The Kobalt Tools 500 offers the likelihood of one of the most thrilling NASCAR races in many years. For the first time in the Chase era, there are three drivers—points leader Denny Hamlin, Jimmie Johnson, and Kevin Harvick—who could leave Phoenix with the points lead after the penultimate event of the season. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit www.phoenixraceway.com/tickets or call 866-408-RACE (7223) today!
Related PIR News
Kevin Harvick did something Sunday that no driver had ever done in the 52-year history of Phoenix International Raceway. The 39-year-old from Bakersfield, Calif. scored a victory in his fourth consecutive race in the same professional series at the legendary one-mile oval in the Arizona desert, leading 224 of 312 laps to win the CampingWorld.com 500.
Daytona 500 winner Joey Logano put on a dominating display at Phoenix International Raceway in Saturday’s AXALTA Faster. Tougher. Brighter 200, the fourth race of 2015 in the NASCAR XFINITY series.
Ruben Pardo earned his first NASCAR Mexico Series win at Phoenix International Raceway in the Toyota 120 on Friday. After starting on the pole, Pardo fell as low as 12th but fought back to the front in the late stages.
Pop music sensation Tori Kelly will perform the national anthem prior to the start of the CampingWorld.com 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Phoenix International Raceway on Sunday, March 15, highlighting the pre-race festivities. Kelly’s performance will be included in the live national television broadcast of the race on FOX at 12:30 p.m. local time (3:30 p.m. Eastern).
Phoenix International Raceway is encouraging fans to prepare for race day traffic by arriving early and enjoying the full NASCAR experience during the CampingWorld.com 500 event weekend, March 13-15. In addition to the CampingWorld.com 500 on Sunday, March 15 at 12:30 p.m. PST, the race weekend at PIR will include the Axalta Faster. Tougher. Brighter. 200 NASCAR XFINITY Series race on Saturday, March 14 at 1 p.m. PST and the Toyota 120 NASCAR Mexico Series race on Friday, March 13 at 7 p.m. PST.