Racing Commentary

Email Lew at

 Carl Edwards (Office Depot Photo)

Corey Dripps

March 26, 2008


Is anyone really surprised that Carl Edwards is running so well this season, as of now the only Cup driver with multiple wins? There’s almost an expectation out there that the blue-eyed backflipper will be out front in his Roush car – and without major bent sheet metal or frayed emotions.

Edwards has certainly devoted unusual energy and discipline to his driving. He is a picture of physical fitness and he races anything he possibly can. But at the base of his success has to be just plain natural talent. How else would it have been possible for a unknown, very green novice at Daytona in 2005 to lay it on the whole field at Atlanta, just three races later, with a breathtaking last lap win over Jimmie Johnson?

Just as Carl is naturally competent behind the wheel, he is naturally outgoing in a social environment. He is accessible, articulate, and an especial favorite of the ladies.

That affability served him well as he came through the ranks of racing. Tales still circulate about how he would go anywhere and everywhere in the short track world, unashamedly handing out his “have helmet, will race” business card.

Carl’s open approach to getting rides was a new one, defying the older, more closed-door conventions on how drivers and owners would hook up. And, although it worked for him in the end, there is no question that Carl’s enthusiasm got him in trouble a time or two along the way.

A few years back Carl ran a dirt modified race at Moberly, Missouri. Corey Dripps, a rock ’em, sock ’em winner on the USMTS tour, took notice as this kid was passing out cards.

“I didn’t think a thing of it,” Corey reflects. “He could do whatever the hell he wants. Until he came along and gave that pitch to MY car owner, that is. No one’s gonna do that to me.”

Surprise, surprise. Somehow Carl ended up getting wrecked in the feature. Corey continues, “I did what I had to do. I hear he came around afterwards to talk to me about it, but I wasn’t at my hauler so I couldn’t tell him why. I didn’t even think about it for a year or so until we were watching a TV race during a rainout and one of my crew guys said. ‘Hey, isn’t that kid doing the back flip the same one you put out at 24 Raceway?’”

I asked Carl about the incident recently. “Yeah. I remember Corey Dripps,” he said. “Tell him that next time I see him I’m gonna have a bigger bumper.”

© 2008 Lew Boyd, Coastal 181

.: Previous Tearoffs :.

3/4/08 - A Cool Track with Cool Racers

2/14/08 - Doug Wolfgang

1/25/08 - Frankie Schneider

1/7/08 - When Drivers Can't See

12/21/07 - When Starters Couldn't See

12/1/07 - Ride Along with Erica Santos

11/15/07 - Tough Drivers

11/1/07 - Cockpit Safety

10/15/07 - That First Race

10/1/07 - Racing Nicknames

9/15/07 - Too Many Officials

9/1/07 - The Look of a Real Driver

8/15/07 - Being Dale Junior

8/1/07 - Armond Holley

7/15/07  -  Red Farmer


























Hit Counter