NASCAR's much-ballyhooed move to double-file 'shootout-style' restarts - with the lead-lap cars side-by-side at the front of the field - didn't play a decisive role in Sunday's Pocono 500, but race runner-up Carl Edwards got enough experience with the new system to suggest a change.
“Let the leader start in his own lane, so he has his own row,” the Roush Fenway driver hinted, “The leader would have no one beside him - he could start inside, outside, do whatever he wanted - and then the second and third cars start behind him, with the second-place guy having the option [of lane choice].
“I think that would be a better way to do it. Other than that, I thought it was great. It was fun. I thought it made for exciting racing, so I think that NASCAR is moving in the right direction there.”
It's not likely that NASCAR will make an immediate tweak of that magnitude to the new format, but it would prevent a penalty to the second-place car for beating the leader to the line on a restart. Third-place finisher David Reutimann agreed with Edwards.
“I wasn't close enough to the front to really see what was going on with the leader, but Carl's right - the leader should at least have the right to be out there,” Reutimann said, “He's earned the right to be there, and maybe all the rest of us [should] double-up. I'm sure they will refine it and make it better, but I think it came off pretty good for the first time.”
by Reid Spencer
Sporting News NASCAR Wire Service