Carl Edwards at Sonoma: ‘I haven’t considered coming back’

Carl Edwards has only become happier and more content in the months since his decision to step away from NASCAR, he told a small group of reporters Saturday — and has no intention of returning to a race car anytime soon.

Edwards, at Sonoma Raceway to give away a pickup truck on behalf of sponsor Stanley Tools, said he’s enjoying life away from racing. Despite his name being floated for open rides such as Hendrick Motorsports’ No. 88, Edwards said he isn’t interested.

“I’ve been talking to a bunch of people and weighing my options — no, just kidding,” he said with a laugh. “No, not at all. I haven’t talked to anyone and I haven’t even considered coming back. Not right now.

“I think it’s pretty clear if I really want to do something, then I would do it. But like I said in January, I would talk to Coach (Joe Gibbs) first — and I haven’t had any conversations about that.”

The only communication he’s had with Gibbs was to write a recent thank-you note reiterating his appreciation to both drive for the team and being allowed to step away when the time was right. Edwards watched Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s retirement news conference and related to the aspect of walking away “on his terms,” Edwards said, calling his own situation a “blessing.”

But Edwards said he hasn’t paid attention to NASCAR news with his name in the rumor mill, nor has he watched the races.

“I don’t watch much TV,” he said.

So what has Edwards been up to? Well, a lot.

He was in Maui this week doing some surfing and exploring the island with artist Dale Zarrella, among others. Edwards has also learned to sail — both in the Virgin Islands and Florida — as well as continuing to fly medical patients through a Cessna program. Edwards and Toyota also set a land speed record for an SUV, going 230 mph in May.

He spent the last month planting crops at his Missouri farm and now plans to travel during the summer — since he didn’t have much of a chance to do that during his racing career.

If he ever returns to a car, it might not be in NASCAR. He mentioned speaking to Global Rallycross driver Steve Arpin about trying one of those cars at some point.

“When I’m ready to drive again, that would be fun to just go do a (GRC) test or something like that,” Edwards said. “I like sliding cars around sideways and (having) tons of horsepower.”

That actually describes what NASCAR drivers do at Sonoma, which made the trip bittersweet for Edwards. This was his third trip to a racetrack this season — he also attended the Phoenix test in January to help successor Daniel Suarez and showed up on Friday of the Atlanta weekend in March for the same reason — but Sonoma was “the toughest one for me.”

“I definitely miss parts of it,” he said. “I would love to be getting in a car to go qualify today. But it’s just like anything — there’s things that are good and things that are bad, but the good for me far outweighs the bad. Just super appreciative to go do the things I’m doing now and enjoying life.”

Edwards said there wasn’t much else to say about himself. So he looked at the reporters, each of whom he’d greeted by name with a handshake and a warm smile, and turned the tables.

“How’s everything going for you guys?” he asked.


17 Replies to “Carl Edwards at Sonoma: ‘I haven’t considered coming back’”

    1. Good Carl . I haven’t selected a new driver since you left. Although chase Elliott is avup and cumming good racer.

  1. …and the Night Race when he punted Kyle going into T1 on the last lap!

  2. Carl is missed but I’m glad he’s happy. Also love hearing about his medical flights. What a great way to turn something you love doing into service for others!

  3. I don’t miss Carl any but I am glad he is happy with his retirement.In reality he suckerd Rouse for a ride with sone of the best rides in Nascar but didn’t have enough talent to win a championship. Then went to JGR same thing drove some of the best cars no title. Johnson could have won a championship with Roush or jgr or Gorden could have. Edwards made all he could saw the light that there’s no way he could win a championship so he took the money and ran.

    1. Yeah no talent. Only the leading driver at Roush. How many races have they won since he left? Oh one. Lol.

      1. Right! And how many races has JGR won? Zero in the cup races, so far. They miss Carl. So do I. And he has come close to a championship. It would have happened. I think that last crash at Homestead was the final reason for his decision. I was at that race, it was a hard hit and such a disappointment for losing a championship he should have had.

    2. The same can be said for Jr., Kane, Hamlin, shoot about 3/4 of the field for that matter. Lol Cherokee Bill is an intellectual genius. Lol????

    3. Your a dumbass he came so close a few times . I’m not a Carl fan but i respect him and you got to go with your heart ,he can drive a race car , I’m a driver and unless you know what gose on in or head you will never understand when we climb in and start up we lay it on the line for us nit you or the fans but for what we are inside our passion and if at any time the passion fades it’s time to get or you will get hurt or killed

    4. No need to be so stupid. Everyone knows Carl was a great driver and is missed very much.

  4. Carl did what was right for him and his life, and he told it the way it was. There’s nothing else to it. He has things he wants to do in his life, and I’m happy for him. Good for him, I miss him like crazy, but I’m glad he’s happy.

  5. Carl, we miss you and love you and are glad you are enjoying life…you’ve earned it!! Sorry we missed you at Shakespeare’s a few weeks ago…hope you and Kate like the t-shirts. Maybe, just maybe, you will make an appearance at JGR’s fanfest this October??

    NASCAR is not the same without you, but we are so glad you get to do what you want!

    Lisa Busch and Jeff Meyer (the “Smoking Man” from the last Ride with Carl for Sam.)

  6. Carl, when I saw your smiling face, I smiled! I am so happy that you are happy! The only race I watched thus far was the Michigan race cause I attend the August race with friends. I will not be attending that race this year as I am having a difficult time choosing a new driver. Just want you to know that you are missed!

Comments are closed.