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Nationwide: Edwards overcomes penalty to win

Carl Edwards didn't let a pit lane speeding penalty get in the way of another Nationwide Series win, as he charged to victory in the Federated Auto Parts 300 at Nashville Superspeedway.
There was no NASCAR Cup Series race this weekend and most of the Cup field took the rare mid-season opportunity to take a break from racing and stayed away from the Nationwide Series Federated Auto Parts 300 at Nashville Superspeedway. The exceptions to the rule were Carl Edwards and Brad Keselowski, and sure enough they dominated the race on Saturday night.

Brad Keselowski, who won the event last year, had taken pole position earlier on Saturday afternoon. He claimed his 10th career pole in his 158th start but his first at Nashville with a time of 30.871s, 0.052s ahead of Steve Wallace, with Edwards and Friday's Truck Series race winner Austin Dillon starting on the second row.

Keselowski carried that form over in the race itself and seemed unstoppable, leading 88 laps over the first half of the 250 lap race. But then on lap 112 the engine started to malfunction with Keselowski suspecting a dropped cylinder; despite attention on pit road to keep it going, the #22 was underpowered for the rest of the evening and could only manage a 12th place finish by the end.

That handed off the lead to Austin Dillon, as Edwards was still down the running order after getting a pit lane speeding penalty during the first round of pit stops on lap 84 under a debris-inspired yellow. "I can't believe I was leading and I sped on pit road," he said. "That was really, really not smart. But in the end it made our night more fun. I probably learned more."

When Keselowski hit problems, Edwards immediately saw the opportunity and charged past Dillon for the lead on lap 122 just before a caution was triggered for Mikey Kile spinning through the grass in-field after contact with Brian Scott. The only time Edwards was out of the lead after that was during the final round of pit stops under a third caution (for debris) on lap 176 but after that he was never under much pressure as his young Roush Fenway Racing team mate Ricky Stenhouse Jr. displaced Kevin Harvick Incorporated's Dillon from the runners-up position.

Edwards celebrated with his customary backflip and a play with the unique Nashville trophy, Sam Bass-designed Gibson guitar, to mark his 34th Nationwide victory in 230 starts and his fifth in 2011, one behind Kyle Busch who was not here tonight. Edwards has five victories at Nashville in 13 starts, which is twice as many as any other driver - and a lot of guitars.

"It boils down to [team owner Jack Roush] and the guys listening to us complain and not ignoring us," Edwards said of Rosh Fenway's continued success in Nationwide and indeed in Cup.

The next Cup event is the Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway next weekend.

Full results and times available.



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Carl Edwards and Austin Dillon take the field around for the final green flag of the NASCAR Nationwide Series Federated Auto Parts 300 on Saturday at Nashville Superspeedway. [Picture Credit: Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images for NASCAR]
Carl Edwards jams with his Sam Bass-designed Gibson guitar after winning the NASCAR Nationwide Series Federated Auto Parts 300 on Saturday at Nashville Superspeedway. [Picture Credit: Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images for NASCAR]
The #22 Penske Racing team attempts to diagnose an engine issue to Brad Keselowski`s NASCAR Nationwide Series Dodge Challenger on Saturday at Nashville Superspeedway. [Picture Credit: Jason Smith/Getty Images for NASCAR]
Carl Edwards does a backflip to celebrate winning the NASCAR Nationwide Series Federated Auto Parts 300 on Saturday at Nashville Superspeedway. [Picture Credit: Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images for NASCAR]
Defending Sprint Cup Champion Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser/Jimmy John’s Chevrolet SS, races to a second place finish, Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Axalta Chevrolet SS finishes in sixth place, and Martin Truex, Jr., driver of the #78 Furniture Row/Visser Precision finishes in twelfth place Sunday, November 22, 2015 in the final race of the 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida. This Chevrolet drivers finished 2nd, 3rd and 4th (respectively) in the Chase of the Cup Championship. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Series championship contenders Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 AXALTA Chevrolet, Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser/Jimmy John`s Chevrolet, Martin Truex Jr., driver of the #78 Furniture Row/Denver Mattress Chevrolet, and Kyle Busch, driver of the #18 M&M`s Crispy Toyota, take part in pre-race ceremonies for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 22, 2015 in Homestead, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Chris Trotman/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser/Jimmy John`s Chevrolet, Kyle Busch, driver of the #18 M&M`s Crispy Toyota, Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 AXALTA Chevrolet, and Martin Truex Jr., driver of the #78 Furniture Row/Denver Mattress Chevrolet, race during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 22, 2015 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Chris Trotman/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Austin Dillon, driver of the #33 Rheem Chevrolet, leads Kyle Larson, driver of the #42 Crest Chevrolet, during the NASCAR XFINITY Series Ford EcoBoost 300 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 21, 2015 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Sarah Crabill/Getty Images)
Defending Sprint Cup Champion Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser/Jimmy John’s Chevrolet SS, qualifies for thirteenth position Friday, November 20, 2015 for Sunday`s Championship 4, the final race of the 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida. Harvick will be joined by Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Axalta Chevrolet SS and Martin Truex, Jr., driver of the #78 Furniture Row/Visser Precision Chevrolet SS to compete for the 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup Championship. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Martin Truex, Jr., driver of the #78 Furniture Row/Visser Precision Chevrolet SS, qualifies for eleventh position Friday, November 20, 2015 for Sunday`s Championship 4, the final race of the 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida. Truex, Jr. will be joined by Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser/Jimmy John’s Chevrolet SS and Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Axalta Chevrolet SS to compete for the 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup Championship. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Axalta Chevrolet SS, qualifies for fifth position Friday, November 20, 2015 for Sunday`s Championship 4, the final race of the 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida. Gordon will be joined by Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser/Jimmy John’s Chevrolet SS and Martin Truex, Jr., driver of the #78 Furniture Row/Visser Precision Chevrolet SS to compete for the 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup Championship. Sunday will be Gordon`s last race as a full-time NASCAR Sprint Cup driver. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Martin Truex Jr., driver of the #78 Furniture Row/Denver Mattress Chevrolet, practices for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 20, 2015 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Jonathan Ferrey/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Martin Truex, Jr., driver of the #78 Furniture Row/Visser Precision Chevrolet SS, advances to the Championship 4 with his fourteenth place finish Sunday, November 15, 2015 in the final round of the Eliminator 8 NASCAR Sprint Cup Chase race at Phoenix International Raceway in Avondale, Arizona. Truex, Jr. is joined with Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Pepsi Chevrolet SS, and Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser/Jimmy John’s Chevrolet SS to the Sprint Cup Series Championship 4 at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida next Sunday. (Photo by Garry Eller/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Pepsi Chevrolet SS, advances to the Championship 4 with his sixth place finish Sunday, November 15, 2015 in the final round of the Eliminator 8 NASCAR Sprint Cup Chase race at Phoenix International Raceway (renamed Jeff Gordon Raceway for the day to honor the four-time champion) in Avondale, Arizona. Gordon is joined with Martin Truex, Jr., driver of the #78 Furniture Row/Visser Precision Chevrolet SS  and Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser/Jimmy John’s Chevrolet SS to the Sprint Cup Series Championship 4 at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida next Sunday. (Photo by Garry Eller/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Dale Earnhardt, Jr., driver of the #88 Nationwide Chevrolet SS, races to victory Sunday, November 15, 2015 in the final round of the Eliminator 8 NASCAR Sprint Cup Chase race at Phoenix International Raceway in Avondale, Arizona. Defending Sprint Cup Champion Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser/Jimmy John’s Chevrolet SS advances to the Champion 4 with his second place finish. Harvick is joined with Martin Truex, Jr., driver of the #78 Furniture Row/Visser Precision Chevrolet SS and Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Pepsi Chevrolet SS to the Sprint Cup Series Championship 4 at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida next Sunday. (Photo by Garry Eller/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser/Jimmy John`s Chevrolet, leads Carl Edwards, driver of the #19 Stanley Toyota, during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on November 15, 2015 in Avondale, Arizona.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Chris Trotman/Getty Images)
Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the #88 Nationwide Chevrolet, and Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser/Jimmy John`s Chevrolet, lead the field onto pit road due to rain during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on November 15, 2015 in Avondale, Arizona.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Chris Trotman/Getty Images)
Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the #88 Nationwide Chevrolet, celebrates on pit road after winning the rain-shortened NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on November 15, 2015 in Avondale, Arizona.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)

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