Carl Edwards needs to reset for next year at Homestead-Miami

Kevin Liles-US PRESSWIRE

Last week Kevin Harvick broke a 44 race winless streak while the rest of us were watching the NASCAR Chase for the Sprint Cup at Phoenix International Raceway.  This week Carl Edwards needs to complete the same feat.  This week NASCAR is at the Homestead-Miami Speedway for the Ford EcoBoost 400.

The Homestead-Miami Speedway is a 1.5 mile oval.  The race is 267 laps or 400.5 miles.  The main difference between this 1.5 mile speedway and all of the others is the banking and it is a true oval, not a D shaped oval.  The turns are not just banked they have variable banking in order to promote side by side racing and there will be plenty of that.  This is another track where the driver can choose different lanes to run in depending on how his car is handling.

This track has been in existence since 1999.  Tony Stewart won the first two races here albeit before the track was changed to its current configuration but he is the most recent winner.  Greg Biffle leads all drivers with three wins on the new configuration.  Carl Edwards has won two of the last four races.  Overall the Roush Fenway Racing cars have done well at this track, winning all but two races of the last eight.

Carl Edwards is the most recent multiple race winner here, coming in second last year to Tony Stewart.  Carl has an average finish at Homestead of an astounding 5.3.  The next closest driver is last week’s winner Kevin Harvick at 7.9.

When looking at the driver ratings Carl separates himself from all the others.  He not only has a great rating of 120.9 but is a full 10 points higher than the second best Martin Truex Jr.  The rest of the driver ratings are below for reference.

Jimmie Johnson had a cut tire last week and gave up the lead in the Chase for the Sprint Cup to Brad Keselowski.  Brad now leads Jimmie by 20 points.  Brad can win the Championship if he finishes 15th or better in the race, 16th or better if he leads a lap, or 17th or better if he leads the most laps.  Sounds like a done deal but if it can happen to Jimmie it can happen to Brad.  Brad knows it.

Well, certainly if you have the choice you always want to be in the lead of the points, especially in the closing races, so I’m thankful for that.”  Brad said after Phoenix, “But I also know that the troubles that they had are the same troubles that we could have next week, and so you try not to take anything for granted.  You try to just focus on what lies ahead, and we’ve got to do the best job we can at Homestead.  That’s where my focus is.

There is no doubt that when Carl Edwards finished the race last year second and therefore losing the championship it changed him and his team.  Carl not only needs to get back to winning form but he also has to end a 68 race winless streak.  While we are watching to see if Brad Keselowski can seal the deal and win his first championship, we need to watch Carl Edwards start his run for next year.

If you can’t get to Homestead-Miami Speedway to watch the race it will be on ESPN Sunday November 18th at 3 PM ET.

Brian Berg Jr. is the Lead NASCAR writer for RantSports.com.

Follow him on Twitter @brian_jr1 during the race and throughout the week for more NASCAR news and commentary. On Facebook at NASCAR News and Commentary. On Pinterest at NASCARNews .

Top 12 Driver Rating at Homestead
Carl Edwards………………………. 120.9
Martin Truex Jr…………………….. 109.7
Matt Kenseth………………………. 107.0
Kevin Harvick………………………. 102.5
Jimmie Johnson……………………. 95.2
Tony Stewart……………………….. 93.1
Jeff Gordon………………………….. 92.9
Denny Hamlin………………………. 92.5
Greg Biffle…………………………… 92.2
Kasey Kahne……………………….. 90.1
Clint Bowyer………………………… 87.8
Jeff Burton…………………………… 86.5
Note: Driver Ratings compiled from 2005-2012 races (seven total) among active drivers at Homestead-Miami Speedway.


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