Carl Edwards wants to clear something up: The rumors about him having an ulterior motive for stepping away from racing aren’t true.
Edwards appeared puzzled Tuesday when he chatted with a small group of reporters in the Phoenix Raceway garage, where he was on hand to guide Daniel Suarez through the rookie’s first-ever Cup laps.
After a long news conference earlier this month to explain why he was leaving, Edwards thought he detailed all of his reasons fairly well.
But then he started listening to Sirius/XM Radio’s NASCAR channel in his free time and learned some people believe he had other reasons for getting out of the car.
“It’s like all the sudden I didn’t explain myself or something,” he said. “I guess if people don’t understand, that’s just the way it is. I thought I explained it pretty clearly. People gotta have something to talk about.”
At one point, Edwards paused and asked reporters for more information about the speculation (which even his former teammates have seemed to fuel).
“What is it that people think I have planned that I didn’t say?” he asked.
The reporters responded by telling Edwards some of the rumors flying around in the garage.
“Man,” he said, shaking his head. “Well, I want to go on the record saying those things are not true. I know you guys need something to talk about, but that’s pretty wild. Pretty crazy.”
Edwards said he still doesn’t know how he’ll fill his time after leaving racing, but he’s interested in doing some sailing and has been working out frequently.
As for the report Edwards might run for political office, he seemed to indicate that would be something in the more distant future than 2018.
“That whole thing blew up very quickly,” he said. “Holy crap! That went out of control.
“The point is, I don’t ever rule out anything. I really do believe in America and if a person can help maintain the future opportunities for other people, that’s our duty as Americans.
“If that’s something down the line that fits in as something I can do, that would be an endeavor I’d be real proud of. But I’m not like putting together this campaign or something; not right now.”