Sport Carl Edwards steps away from NASCAR, avoids 'retirement'

19:35  11 january  2017
19:35  11 january  2017 Source:   Associated Press

Edwards isn't going to Fox booth for NASCAR

  Edwards isn't going to Fox booth for NASCAR A gig alongside former driver Jeff Gordon has been ruled out as his next step.Edwards is not leaving his No. 19 car for a TV job at Fox Sports, which had been the subject of some speculation following Tuesday morning's news.

Edwards announced he was stepping away from racing. Carl Edwards made it clear Wednesday he's not retired . Instead, one of NASCAR 's top stars is walking away from a championship organization for three very personal reasons.

Carl Edwards confirms that he is walking away from NASCAR this season. "I just want to be a good person."- An emotional # CarlEdwards after being thanked for his caring & loving attitude to fans & media.


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HUNTERSVILLE, N.C. — Carl Edwards made it clear Wednesday he's not retired. Instead, one of NASCAR's top stars is walking away from a championship organization for three very personal reasons.

Exclusive: Carl Edwards won't race in 2017

  Exclusive: Carl Edwards won't race in 2017 FOXSports.com confirmed from multiple sources Carl Edwards won't race in the 2017 season.On Wednesday, JGR will announce at a press conference that Daniel Suarez will replace Edwards as the driver of the team’s No. 19 Monster Energy Cup Series Toyota. Suarez is the reigning NASCAR XFINITY Series champion.

Carl Edwards listed reason after reason for stepping away from full-time NASCAR competition this season, less than two months removed from nearly winning his first Cup title.

Edwards has 28 Cup wins and has finished runner-up for the championship twice, in 2008 and 2011. USA TODAY Sports.

He's content with his career accomplishments. He wants to spend more time on his outside interests. He's healthy and doesn't want that to change.

Edwards had one year remaining on his contract with Joe Gibbs Racing, and he came 10 laps away from winning his first Cup title two months ago. He informed Joe Gibbs shortly before Christmas that he did not want to race this season, and used about 40 minutes Wednesday at team headquarters to explain his reasoning.

"This was such a surprise," Gibbs said. "When he sat down in front of m e and shared what he was thinking, I was totally surprised. I said 'This is a huge decision, let's take some time with this."

Four days later, Edwards and Gibbs spoke on the telephone and the team owner knew the decision was made.

Grace, class marked Carl Edwards' NASCAR career

  Grace, class marked Carl Edwards' NASCAR career Carl Edwards, who is expected to announce Wednesday that he won't race in 2017, won 28 races over a 13-season NASCAR Cup career. But, as much as anything else, Edwards will be known for the class and decency he showed after coming agonizingly close to winning two championships. Edwards, 37, will likely be replaced in the No. 19 Toyota by Daniel Suarez, who won last season's Xfinity Series championship.

Carl Edwards confirms that he is walking away from NASCAR this season. "I just want to be a good person."- An emotional # CarlEdwards after being thanked for his caring & loving attitude to fans & media.

Carl Edwards confirms that he is walking away from NASCAR this season. "I just want to be a good person."- An emotional # CarlEdwards after being thanked for his caring & loving attitude to fans & media.

"I could tell he was totally committed," Gibbs said.

Roughly 10 minutes after Edwards' candid discussion about his reasoning, Gibbs began a second news conference in which Mexican driver Daniel Suarez was introduced as the replacement for Edwards' No. 19 Toyota. Suarez is the reigning Xfinity Series champion and the first foreign-born winner of a national series crown.

Edwards insisted his reasoning for walking away were pure and personal. He has no idea what he'll do next and was adamant that he's not been in discussions with other teams or manufacturers about new opportunities.

"There's no life raft I am jumping on to, I'm just jumping," he said. "This is a pure, simple, personal decision."

Edwards twice came within moments of winning a Cup title. He lost to Tony Stewart in 2011 on a tie-breaker, then again in November when he was leading the season finale with 10 laps remaining when a debris caution set up a final restart.

Daniel Suarez: Promoted earlier than expected, but not too soon

  Daniel Suarez: Promoted earlier than expected, but not too soon Don’t worry about Daniel Suarez. And don’t buy into the assumption that, in promoting Suarez to fill the seat of departing Carl Edwards, Joe Gibbs Racing is making the same mistake it made in 2009 when the organization threw then-18-year-old Joey Logano into the deep end of the pool.Laboring under the weight of replacing Tony Stewart in the No. 20 Toyota, Logano never blossomed at JGR. It took four years of seasoning and a move to Team Penske for Logano to realize his enormous potential in a Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series car.

Carl Edwards confirms that he is walking away from NASCAR this season. "I just want to be a good person."- An emotional # CarlEdwards after being thanked for his caring & loving attitude to fans & media.

Carl Edwards confirms that he is walking away from NASCAR this season. "I just want to be a good person."- An emotional # CarlEdwards after being thanked for his caring & loving attitude to fans & media.

Edwards had to block Joey Logano on the restart and it triggered a crash that ended his title hopes. Despite that heartbreak, he said he's walking away content with his 28 career victories.

"You guys know I don't race just for the trophies," Edwards said. "I'm rewarded by the challenges. I feel accomplished. I know sitting in that car, I'm the best I can be."

Edwards, who lives in his home state of Missouri, is married to a doctor and has two young children, also wants more time to focus on outside interests.

"This is all-encompassing. Full time. Not just physical time," he said. "I think about racing all day, wake up and have dreams about it. I've been doing it for 20 years. I need to take that time right now and devote it to people and things that are important and I'm really passionate about."

He also insisted he's healthy and that no one in his family needed his attention for medical reasons. But, his wife specializes in neurological rehabilitation, and Edwards admitted the concussion issues that plagued Dale Earnhardt Jr. most of last season were a wakeup call to the industry.

"I can stand here healthy after all the things I've done," Edwards said. "That's a true testament to NASCAR, the tracks. It's a risky sport. I'm aware of the risks. I don't like how it feels to take the hits we take. I'm a sharp guy. I want to be sharp in 30 years."

NASCAR chairman Brian France praised the contributions Edwards has made to NASCAR in a statement, but the news conference was attended by a large contingent of NASCAR executives.

"Carl Edwards has made an indelible mark on NASCAR," France said. "His hard-charging driving style has led to memorable moments that will live forever in the history of our sport. Carl's passion and personality will greatly be missed - as will the signature backflips that NASCAR fans have come to expect following his victories. We wish Carl nothing but the best as he enters this next phase in life."

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