Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Rousing Response Restores Roush; Fords Have Been First on Race Day a Lot Lately, a Far Cry from 2010 Woes

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Rousing Response Restores Roush; Fords Have Been First on Race Day a Lot Lately, a Far Cry from 2010 Woes

Article excerpt

Byline: Don Coble

CONCORD, N.C. - When Carl Edwards' car exploded like it hit a land mine during a celebratory slide through the infield last Saturday, the natural assumption was he also threw away any chance of winning Sunday's Coca-Cola 600.

Edwards dominated the Sprint All-Star Race at Charlotte Motor Speedway. In the process, he became the favorite to win at the same track this Sunday in the longest race of the NASCAR season.

Nobody at Roush Fenway Racing seemed concerned about the car.

"Most people would look at the car and say that car had to go to the 600, but Bob [Osborne, crew chief] assures me he's got a better car waiting back at the shop to go," car owner Jack Roush said.

A year ago, the flagship team for Ford Racing came to the 600 without a win. In fact, Ford's first victory didn't come until Aug. 1, when Greg Biffle won at Pocono, Pa.

The Roush group wasn't even close last spring. Now it's on the verge of domination.

Counting the 40-lap Sprint Showdown, Roush cars led 97 of 140 laps. All four of the team cars finished among the top eight. Edwards was unstoppable, especially in the final 10-lap sprint, when he pulled away to an easy win.

"All the Roush cars to me roll in the middle of the corner better than we did," Jeff Gordon said. "We made big gains, and we've just got a little bit of work to do to get where they're at."

Much like life, the journey has been just as important to Roush Fenway Racing as the destination. A year ago, the team was in disarray. David Ragan and Matt Kenseth all got new crew chiefs and Roush reorganized his entire race shop. Although the season doesn't offer any breaks, the team essentially started over with its setups and approach. It wasn't until the final three months that things started to click.

Trevor Bayne got it going this year at the Daytona 500 for Wood Brothers Racing - the car and engine prepared by Roush. …

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