Category Archives: Mike Edwards

Five Questions With Mike Edwards

Q: Looking back at the preseason debate, you and your team were not part of the real equation. Now after two No. 1 qualifiers and sitting in second place in points, was that a blessing over the offseason?
Mike Edwards: During the off-season things were a little different compared to previous years. For one, we were having a new chassis (car) being built, so that takes up much of your focus. And second, we knew we where going to be a competing as a single team again with no engine renter, since Ron Krisher decided to retire.
While all of that was going on with one side of the team, it basically gave us more time on the engine development and it allowed us to concentrate heavily in that area and it has shown in the first two races. Our engines are running great and are showing fantastic power. Paul Hoskins, our head engineer, was able to take some extra time and focus on the efficiency of our engine program and it has proved to be very beneficial.
Q: Based on what you accomplished at the first two races, does that add any pressure moving forward for the next 22 stops?
Mike Edwards: Not really but, it does give us great confidence in our program moving forward. It is a very long season and we have a huge chunk of races left to go. As a team, we cannot get comfortable with where we are at, but need to keep moving in the right direction with the entire program and be even better than we are right now come the fall.
Q: What do you do to keep the momentum going with your I Am Second/Interstate Batteries/K&N Camaro after taking the last two weeks off?
Mike Edwards: Well we really never had any weeks off so to speak, but I guess you can call it that with no NHRA national events on the calendar. We did some much needed testing at out local track – Tulsa Raceway Park. It gave use the opportunity to try some things on our Chevy Camaro that we just didn’t have a chance to during the two events. Even though we have had success with this car this early in the season, it still only has less than 50 runs. So we are trying to figure out what it likes
and dislikes, so we can make sure we don’t have costly letdown when the runs really count.
Q: Gainesville Raceway has always been one of the fastest tracks on the tour, how do you approach this event different?
Mike Edwards: Gainesville promises to not disappoint in that the track will be good and the atmospheric weather conditions will be fantastic. We did test in Bradenton, Fla., over the winter so we have a few notes from that test session. But, Gainesville will present to us our biggest challenge thus for in the season in that it will be a completely different setup than the first two races. We just hope the chance to test since Phoenix will allow us to keep at the same level of performance.
Q: What is your fondest memory at the East Coast season kickoff?
Mike Edwards: It would have to the first to break the 6.4 barrier in national event competition. I’ve been doing this a long time and I remember the day when going in the 6’s was a big deal but, to go 6.49 in a quarter-of-a-mile is fast in a Pro Stock car. We love to race in Gainesville because it is always super fast and allows you to sometimes swing for the grand slam. If the weather conditions are good we could see a national record. That would be cool to have, but so would the Wally come Sunday, so we have to keep our focus on why we are there.

Edwards Plans To Continue Recent Fortunes At Fabled Englishtown

During the first 11 trips to Englishtown and Old Bridge Township Raceway Park, Mike Edwards did not have any good fortunes on his side, scoring only three round wins, and those all coming in 1998 when he was runner-up.
But those misfortunes have swung the opposite direction the last three trips to New Jersey as the Penhall/K&N/Interstate Batteries-backed squad has compiled nine round wins. In 2008, Edwards reached the semifinals, to do it one better in 2009, and then topped that in 2010 with his first victory at the fabled facility.
“When you lay it out like that, this place did not like me for a long time, and then all of sudden it changed and I have been on its good side,” Edwards said. “That the track has been around for nearly as long as drag racing, maybe it forces all of us to pay our dues before it begins rewarding us with trophies. I just hope that since we opened that portion last year, the hardware keeps flowing our direction.”
Edwards and his Pontiac have started to build the momentum they have been hoping for heading into the summer months of the NHRA Full Throttle season. In the recent events, he has qualified No. 1 at a couple stops and reached the semifinals at a couple others. He knows now is the time to turn that consistency into something more – victories.
“It is all well and good to be fast in qualifying and then come Sunday be consistent, but not strong enough to get over the hump into the final and have a shot at the Wally,” Edwards said. “Since Topeka, that is what we have focused on, being faster when it comes to eliminations. We think we have fixed a few things and straightened out a couple other things that will allow us to reach that goal. Now we just need it to translate into a summer run.”
Edwards comes into the event in fourth place in the Pro Stock standing, trailing leader Jason Line by 105 points with nine races remaining in the regular season points battle.