Obvious choices would be Jimmie Johnson, well because he’s Jimmie and we know what he can do and Tony Stewart, because we saw what he did and he could very well do it again. However, someone once said “You have to lose a championship before you can win it” and the driver that fits that bill is Carl Edwards. Carl knows what he needs to do to win it this time around. He’s focusing on the Sprint Cup Series and plans to run few, if any Nationwide Series races, putting his full attention to the task at hand, winning the 2012 championship.
Jason Searcy says...
I think the Fords will have an advantage with the FR9 engine in 2012 and with the new fuel injection the larger teams can draw from additional information. Carl Edwards was incredibly consistent in 2011 with 26 "top 10" finishes but won only one race. People forget about his Roush-Fenway teammate Matt Kenseth, he had the third most "top 10" finishes last year (20) plus scored 3 wins. He finished 4th in points even though he had some bad luck in the Chase (thanks to Brian Vickers).
Matt won the Championship in 2003 and his crew chief Jimmie Fennig won the title with Kurt Busch in 2004. Plus, he has the fastest pit crew in NASCAR. Limited sponsorship will not be a problem for the #17 car, Jack Roush showed his support in the off season saying this team will stay intact no matter what. Smart, fast and consistent will win in 2012 and Wisconsin native Matt Kenseth fits the bill.
Jordan Bianchi "The racing geek" says....
For the last six seasons, I’ve always been an ardent believer that until someone knocked Jimmie Johnson off the championship pedestal, he was unquestionably the favorite entering the season. Now for the first time since the beginning of the 2006 season, we enter a year without Johnson being referred to as the “defending champ.” And while it’s very easy to say the man who won five consecutive titles will return to his winning ways in ‘12, I don’t think that’s the case.
In what I think will be a wide-open title race, I strongly believe when the checkered flag waves at Homestead to closeout the 2012 season, it will be the man who came oh so close a year ago to winning it all, finally seizing the brass ring.
After several near-misses, andwith the speed, smarts and the confidence needed to win, not to mention a greatteam instep with him, everything is lining up for Carl Edwards to win his first Sprint Cup championship.
While I think there is still something to be said about the “Season-After Affect” that has recently plagued the guy who finished second in points the year before, Edwards will prove to be immune from such a disease.
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