Edwards Wins the Napa Auto Parts 200
NASCAR’s Nationwide Series returned to the road on the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve Sunday for the third time in the Napa Auto Parts 200. The first two races on the 2.709-mile road course in Montreal were entertaining affairs that brought out thousands of race fans. Sunday’s road race was no different as Carl Edwards passed Marcos Ambrose on the last corner of the race to win the Nationwide Series Napa Auto Parts 200 by a margin of 0.393 seconds. Carl was able to stay close enough to Ambrose to take advantage of the only lapse in concentration Ambrose had all day to win his and Roush Fenway Racing’s first road race in one of NASCAR’s top three divisions. Ambrose had to apply the brakes when Carl got position on him and that was the end of the story. This victory is also his third Nationwide Series win of the 2009 season and the 23rd of his career.
Marcos Ambrose was disappointed after leading 60 laps of the scheduled 76 laps of a race that was affected by the rain that fell on the track at times. The field ran the last part of the race on rain tires after a mandatory change for the entire field on Lap 61. Ambrose has raced on the road course at Montreal three previous times, finishing seventh, third and second and he was certainly hoping to add a win to his record.
The third Nationwide Series race at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve was notable for a couple of different reasons. At 3 hours and 49 minutes in length, it’s the longest race in Nationwide Series history, eclipsing the 1997 Gateway 300. This race produced 11 cautions for 31 laps, more than doubling the previous high totals of 5 and 14 respectively.
Andrew Ranger had a great race and finished third, just ahead of hometown hero Jacques Villeneuve who thrilled the partisan Quebecers in the grandstands with a fourth place finish. Brad Keselowski tightened his hold on third place in the standings by coming home in fifth place. Tony Raines had a difficult race but still managed to finish sixth, while Jean-Francois Dumoulin finished seventh, ahead of Stephen Leict in eighth place. Brendan Gaughan kept his car on the road and managed to finish ninth, while the top ten was rounded out by Kyle Busch, the Nationwide Series leader.
“Image: Zuma Press”