Carl Edwards abruptly retired from NASCAR after a bizarre wreck took him out of championship contention at Homestead Miami. However, his itch to race has returned after the former Xfinity Series champion watched NASCAR's dirt race at Bristol.
NASCAR held its first dirt track Cup Series race in over 50 years at the Bristol Motor Speedway. While results were less than stellar from a fan standpoint, the on-track action seemed to entice Carl Edwards.
Speaking about the dirt track race, Edwards said:
“So, I watched a 6 minute clip [of practice]. Afterwards, I told my wife, ‘Boy, that looks fun. I think I could actually make it there and there might be a car for me to drive.’ I mean, it looked so neat. My whole career, my favorite thing has been sliding the cars around and managing horsepower. That race, if it wasn’t any fun, I don’t want anyone to tell me that. Because, it looked like, just a blast."
Carl Edwards decided to end his 12-year career in the Cup Series because he wanted to leave with his health intact. However, there is nothing inherently dangerous about dirt track racing. In fact, with NASCAR's big push towards safety over the last 20 years, there is little to no risk involved.
What will make Carl Edwards return to NASCAR?
Reminiscing about his career, Edwards said:
“I have thought about it a little bit. I miss the driving part, a lot, I miss the people, I don’t miss the schedule but something like a one-off would be a lot of fun.”
The 41-year-old also suggested some changes to the series that could potentially make him return:
"...If NASCAR somehow changed the package. To where there was no downforce and 1,000 horsepower. I think I could probably get pretty interested in that too.”
NASCAR is already preparing a next-gen car debut next year, which means changing their downforce package is unlikely. However, another dirt race would be fun. It would give Carl Edwards the chance to race in the series again, and to do one of his famous flips off the top of his car.