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Archive for Sunday, July 20, 2008

Edwards Nationwide winner

July 20, 2008

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— Carl Edwards passed Jason Leffler with 48 laps remaining Saturday night and cruised to victory at the Missouri-Illinois Dodge Dealers 250 on Saturday night.

It was Edwards' second victory at Gateway International Raceway in three years and it came in front of a nearly hometown crowd. Edwards grew up in Columbia, Mo., about a two-hour drive from the track.

Joey Logan, the 18-year-old racer in just his fifth race, finished second after starting fourth. Jason Kelley took third, followed by Jason Leffler and London Cassill.

Edwards earned his second victory on the Nationwide circuit in 22 starts. He has nine top-five finishes and 11 in the top 10. Edwards took advantage of the sixth caution of the 200-lap race. He got four tires and filled his tank, coming out of the pits third. He quickly overtook Leffler and James Buescher.

That final caution, caused when David Reutimann got underneath the back of Brad Keselowski, provided one of several pauses during the choppy race.

Cassill started a five-car accident that brought out a red flag with 84 laps left. He sent Scott Wimmer into the wall with a tap to the driver's-side back bumper, causing a chain reaction that knocked out Wimmer, Mike Bliss, last-year's winner Reed Sorenson and Steve Wallace.

The cars remained under red for nearly 30 minutes as the track was cleaned before driving resumed under caution for five laps with pole-winner Jamie McMurray in the lead.

The event started despite a partial power outage that darkened about a third of the lights around the track, including the caution lights, the scoring tower and the public-address system.

Officials called a competition caution on Lap 22 to practice going through the procedure without the caution lights. The caution was lifted on Lap 25, and all the power was restored almost immediately after the green flag was waved.

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