Keeping Pace

Championship is close to reality for Edwards

Mike Edwards of the NHRA Full Throttle Pro Stock division is the fast qualifier in Dallas, Texas. (Photo courtesy of NHRA) (The Spokesman-Review)
Mike Edwards of the NHRA Full Throttle Pro Stock division is the fast qualifier in Dallas, Texas. (Photo courtesy of NHRA) (The Spokesman-Review)

For Mike Edwards, the championship run has been a special one because of what it means not only to him, but to the rest of the Young Life/A.R.T. team.

Courtesy: NHRA Media Relations

Pomona, CA-How close is Mike Edwards to winning his first NHRA Pro Stock championship? Well, a measly 12 points is all that stands between him and the gold Wally.
 
The crown could be Edwards as early as Thursday during the first qualifying session at the season-finale Auto Club NHRA Finals in Pomona. With Edwards receiving 10 points for going through technical inspection, all he would need to do is qualify No. 1 or 2 in that first session, or for Greg Anderson not to qualify in the top three to clinch the championship.
 
"These have been a nerve-wracking couple weeks, just waiting to finish this off so we can maybe enjoy the rest of the race weekend," Edwards admitted. "This is high-level stress. The nice part is we only have just a bit more work to do to finish this off and go out and just race the rest of the event."
 
For Edwards, the championship run has been a special one because of what it means not only to him, but to the rest of the Young Life/A.R.T. team.
 
"The entire group has been so dedicated to reaching this goal and that is what makes it special," he said. "When you go into something with a group of individuals, who are willing to give everything they have and more to come out on top; that is something amazing to be part of."
 
Nearly everyone in drag racing, especially a few other Pro Stock drivers are comforted that Edwards, who clearly has been the dominant car in 2009 with 15 No. 1 qualifying efforts and the most final-round appearances, is going to take the champion gold trophy back to Oklahoma.
 
In a recent interview on competitionplus.com, current second place runner Anderson said, "I'm happier than hell that this year it looks like the strongest car is going to win the championship. That's what I like about it. It didn't really matter to me how the points system worked this year because the strongest car is going to win it."
 
To Edwards, that is the best compliment he can get from a fellow racer. "When a racer of Greg Anderson's level gives you that kind of complement, it means a lot," said Edwards. "He is a true champion and it's an honor to get to pull to the line against guys like him, Jeg Coughlin, Jason Line, Greg Stanfield, V. Gaines, and all the other Pro Stock drivers.
 
"If we do what we need to for this championship, I hope I can represent the Pro Stock class like the 14 other racers who have held that title. What an honor to be part of that incredible fraternity."




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Keeping Pace

Motorsports correspondent Doug Pace keeps up with motorsports news and notes from around the region.





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