It must have felt a little like deja vu for Carl Edwards.
Much like they did two weeks ago at Texas Motor Speedway, Edwards and crew chief Bob Osborne won Sunday's Ford 400 on fuel strategy. But it still wasn't enough to win the championship as Edwards fell 69 points short of leader Jimmie Johnson, right, who finished a comfortable 15th to earn his record-tying third consecutive Sprint Cup title. Only Cale Yarborough (1976-78) has accomplished the same feat.
Edwards started fourth and had the dominant car for much of the race, but he wasn’t leading as the laps counted down. When leader Tony Stewart pitted for a splash of gas with 11 to go, Roush Fenway Racing teammates Matt Kenseth and Edwards were left to battle for the win. However, both drivers were dangerously low on fuel. Edwards’ No. 99 Ford assumed the lead with four laps to go when Kenseth pulled aside because he was out of gas. With more than a 10-second lead over fellow Chaser Kevin Harvick, Edwards easily cruised — very slowly — to the win from there.
Edwards led a race-high 157 laps, and stretched his final fuel load 66 laps to earn his series-high ninth victory of 2008.
Johnson’s 69-point winning margin is the second largest since the Chase began in 2004. He won seven races in 2008 and averaged a 5.7 finish in the Chase.
Complete results can be found here. Final standings can be found here.
-- Michele Vincze
Photo: Getty Images