He turned left and right while moving closer to the front and Carl Edwards was able to snag his first road course race win of his career Sunday afternoon in the Toyota Save Mart 350 at Sonoma Raceway.
It wasn’t easy for Edwards as he had to battle quite a few frontrunners in the race. AJ Allmendinger was one of the favorites going into Sunday’s race as he started on the outside pole next to Jamie McMurray who led the first ten laps. Allmendinger was able to get around McMurray after showing his ability at the top of the race. He would lead 12 laps and then Kevin Harvick captured to the lead when he picked off several drivers in a hurry to get into that position.
After a caution on lap 30, Allmendinger regained the lead and would stay there until lap 54. McMurray was able to maneuver his car to overtake Allmendinger but it wouldn’t last long. Harvick, who restarted 13th after a caution and a round of pit stops, took the lead on lap 65. He would have to refer to his rear view mirror for a quick moving Jimmie Johnson. He quickly made his way through the field from starting in the 22nd spot and he got the lead from Harvick on lap 70.
Just as Johnson took the lead, the caution flag waved for debris.
On the restart lap, Clint Bowyer joined the front of the pack but a quick caution came out for a scary crash involving Matt Kenseth. Dale Earnhardt, Jr. and Kenseth were racing into turn seven when Earnhardt, Jr.’s car took an unruly jump off the rumble strips and he got into the right rear of Kenseth. Kenseth’s No. 20 shot off the racetrack and hard into a tire barrier. The impact caused the car’s front bumper and engine to tear completely off the car. The car sat motionless, but the driver was able to get out of the car.
After that incident was cleaned up, Bowyer and Marcos Ambrose were restarting in the front row and Ambrose was able to get in front of Bowyer. Bowyer kept creeping backwards and on lap 82 Jamie McMurray’s No. 1 Chevy tapped the rear bumper of Bowyer’s Toyota and Bowyer spun around. Kevin Harvick had nowhere to go and he ran right into Bowyer. Both cars sustained damage but the drivers were able to continue in the race.
It was then when Edwards was able to restart in the lead and wouldn’t give up the spot. Jeff Gordon gave him a good run in the closing laps and it appeared that he would overtake Edwards on the last turn of the race, but Edwards would hold off Gordon for the win.
Edwards was the 10th consecutive different winner at Sonoma Raceway. He now has two race wins on the season.
The top ten: Carl Edwards, Jeff Gordon, Dale Earnhardt, Jr., Jamie McMurray, Paul Menard, Kasey Kahne, Jimmie Johnson, Marcos Ambrose, Greg Biffle, and Clint Bowyer.
Coming up this week on the racing schedule: Kentucky Speedway!
Thursday, June 26: NASCAR Camping World Truck Series UNOH 225 at 8 p.m. ET
Friday, June 27: NASCAR Nationwide Series John R. Elliott HERO Campaign 300 presented by Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over at 7:30 p.m. ET.
Saturday, June 28: NASCAR Sprint Cup Series The Quaker State 400 presented by Advance Auto Parts at 7:30 p.m. ET.