Pedal to the concrete? Two-timing Carl Edwards looks to cycle his engines to Championship in Miami


Ford Racing's Carl Edwards heads into the weekend sitting 4th in the Sprint Cup standings and 3rd in the Nationwide after a win at Gateway—to which he bicycled nearly 200 miles. Champions will be crowned in the Sprint, Nationwide and Craftsman Truck Series during Ford Championship Weekend Nov. 14-16 at Homestead-Miami Speedway. Be sure to get your tickets NASCAR's series-crowning championship finales.

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By Lee Montgomery,

MADISON, Ill. – Carl Edwards took the long way to Gateway International Raceway for Saturday’s Missouri-Illinois Dodge Dealers 250 Nationwide Series race. And he took it on a mountain bike.

Edwards and five friends, including Nationwide Series chaplain Lonnie Clouse, rode their bikes along the Katy Trail from Edwards’ hometown of Columbia, Mo., to St. Louis. That’s about 190 miles, if you’re counting.

“I can’t tell if there’s something wrong with my seat or if my butt hurts that bad,” Edwards said.

Fellow driver Clint Bowyer jokingly questioned Edwards’ sanity while saying he’d never make such a trek.

“Absolutely … not,” Bowyer said with a laugh. “Who in the hell would ride a bicycle – I told him that last night. He said his butt was hurting so bad it was raw. His legs hurt so bad he couldn’t walk. I said, ‘Boy, that sounds like a great idea right there you got going on for yourself.’

“No, I just don’t see that much fun in my future any time soon.”

But Edwards said he “had a really good time,” though he added that “my legs hurt, my butt hurts from the seat and my abs hurt from laughing so much.”

There were two side trips that Edwards and his friends won’t soon forget. One was at a public pool in Herman, Mo., where Edwards taught some kids the finer points of a backflip off the diving board. And the kids had no idea who Edwards was.

“It was only four bucks to get in, and it was an awesome pool,” Edwards said. “We got straight off our bikes, they let us put our bikes at the lost and found. We just all walked out to the pool and jumped in. It was great.”

Next, Edwards and his clan stopped at a Save-A-Lot, a grocery store that also sponsors Edwards’ Nationwide car.

“We go in there, we’re all sugar depleted, buying bananas and Gummi bears,” Edwards said. “We went to the checkout line, and I saw they were going to have the race car there on Sunday. I was like, ‘Awesome, you guys are going to have the car here on Sunday?’ She was like, ‘Yeah, we sure are.’ We talked about it for a while, and then I left. Nobody recognized me. There were pictures of me everywhere. It was really neat. I got a kick out of that.”

The last stop was at Save-A-Lot headquarters, where a sweaty Edwards sauntered in the lobby and asked for CEO Bill Shaner.

“We got the CEO to come down in the parking lot, and everybody was looking at the fountain they had there,” Edwards said. “The fountain looked perfect to just jump in after you’ve been on your bicycle all day. He was like, ‘No problem. I can’t see anything wrong with you guys getting in the fountain.’”

Bowyer wonders if there’s something wrong with Edwards.

“He left a perfectly good airplane to get in a perfectly good car to ride a piece of junk

bicycle 200-some miles here,” Bowyer said. “We all know Carl though.”

[photo courtesy of gettyimages]
[story courtesy of]

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