NASCAR & Auto Racing

Edwards eyeing Busch Series points title

Carl Edwards is running away with the NASCAR Busch Series driver's championship this season.

But once again, Richard Childress Racing is looking to steal some of the thunder.

Edwards maintains a dominating 766-point lead over David Reutimann entering Saturday's Carfax 250 at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn, Mich. (3 p.m., ESPN2). However, RCR's No. 29 team -- co-driven by Jeff Burton and Scott Wimmer -- trails Edwards' No. 60 team by just 41 points in the owner standings.

The No. 29 trailed by a season-high 302 points after the second Nashville race in June, but has made up 227 points during the past five races.

RCR's No. 21 team won the owner title in 2003 with drivers Kevin Harvick and Johnny Sauter. Brian Vickers won the driver's title that season.

In addition to the No. 29 chasing the owner's title, RCR is also making noise with Harvick, who won the second Busch title a year ago. He's won two straight races and four of his past five. Harvick can become the seventh driver in series history to win three straight races with a victory Saturday. Ryan Newman (2005) was the last to do so.

Harvick's win last weekend at Watkins Glen, N.Y., was the 31st of his career and moved him into a tie with Jack Ingram for second on the series' all-time win list. Mark Martin holds the record with 47 wins.

A win at Michigan also would give Harvick four wins in the past four races he's entered (but not consecutive events). Dale Earnhardt Jr. (2001-03) and Newman ('05) hold the record with wins in five straight starts (not in consecutive races).


Martin will make his second start of the season for Hendrick Motorsports this weekend. In his first race in Hendrick's No. 5 Chevrolet in May, he finished second at Darlington, S.C.

"It took me way too long to get acclimated with the car at Darlington and I really messed up in qualifying and had to basically come from the back, or we might have been able to win that one," Martin said.

"I've known Rick (Hendrick) for a long time and he's meant a lot to NASCAR. To be able to get a win in one of his cars would be really special for me."

Jason Keller returns to the series after a two-week break to resume his march toward the all-time starts mark of 417 held by Tommy Houston. Keller has 411 starts and is the only driver other than Houston to have 400 starts.