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Coca-Cola 600 Update: Carl Edwards Leads Early

The man who dominated the Sprint All-Star Race last Saturday has picked up right where he left off. Carl Edwards has his No. 99 Ford out front in the early stages of the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte. Edwards overhauled Brad Keselowski, the polesitter, at lap nine to move out front.

Keselowski currently runs second, followed by A.J. Allmendinger, Jeff Burton, and Denny Hamlin.

Two drivers found the wall early, but without the consequence of a caution. Mike Skinner, who tagged the wall in yesterday's opening practice and was forced to a backup car, slapped the turn four wall and took his No. 60 Toyota to the garage area. Meanwhile, Ricky Stenhouse Jr., making his Sprint Cup debut, brushed the wall off the fourth turn while running in the top-10 and has steadily faded ever since.

The race was preceded by a stirring and patriotic pre-race ceremony paying tribute to our military that included the playing of Amazing Grace, Taps, and the singing of our Nation's anthem by Darius Rucker.

Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.