Despite an apparent hard push from Joe Gibbs Racing to drive their Home Depot-sponsored Toyota, Carl Edwards will remain with the only Sprint Cup team he's known.
Roush-Fenway Racing announced Thursday that it has signed Edwards to a multi-year agreement to continue driving its No. 99 Ford, a car he took over in August 2004. Terms of the contract were not disclosed, which seems to be common in recent years as teams look to avoid the kind of contract-season hoopla that has surrounded Edwards this year.
Most recently, rumors had him pegged as Joey Logano's replacement in Gibbs' No. 20 Home Depot car. The Atlanta-based home improvement giant was apparently looking for an answer to rival Lowes and five-time defending Sprint Cup champion Jimmie Johnson. Home Depot lost two-time Sprint Cup Tony Stewart after the 2008 season, and Logano has failed to live up to the extensive hype that preceded his 2009 arrival. Speculation at last month's race in Loudon was that a deal for Edwards to take over the orange machine was done, with figures estimated at a staggering $18 million.
It was revealed this past weekend that Ford had stepped in to try to keep their star driver from defecting to Toyota. Apparently their sweetened deal was enough to keep the current Sprint Cup point leader in Jack Roush's camp, with Columbus-based Aflac as his primary sponsor.
Edwards currently stands atop the Sprint Cup standings by 11 points over Johnson. He has one win this year - at Las Vegas in March - and leads the series with 10 top-fives and 13 top-10s. He has 19 career victories in the Sprint Cup Series and has won 34 NASCAR Nationwide Series races in Roush's Fords. He was that circuit's champion in 2007.