THROWBACK: Carl Edwards Stuns Jimmie Johnson, Brings Out Back-Flip Celebration in Atlanta NASCAR Race

Published 03/21/2021, 8:00 AM EDT
FORT WORTH, TX – NOVEMBER 06: Carl Edwards, driver of the #19 Sport Clips Toyota, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the rain-shortened NASCAR Sprint Cup Series AAA Texas 500 at Texas Motor Speedway on November 6, 2016 in Fort Worth, Texas. (Photo by Sean Gardner/NASCAR via Getty Images)


Back in 2005, Carl Edwards and Jimmie Johnson engaged in a titanic battle at the Golden Corral 500. Johnson was leading the race, but Edwards was right on his tail. Somehow, Edwards managed to sneak his car around the outside of the Hendrick Motorsports car and snatch the win.

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In the end, only 0.028 seconds separated the two drivers. Safe to say, not many knew how he had the energy to perform a backflip off the car after 500 miles of racing. However, this was a special occasion, as it marked Edwards’ debut win in the Cup Series. Besides, there was no better way to tick off a maiden win than to beat another driver in a dead heat.

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Carl Edwards proved his mettle against Jimmie Johnson at Atlanta

It is worth mentioning that the rookie driver had led just eight laps. Otherwise, Jimmie Johnson and Edwards’ teammate, Greg Biffle, dominated much of the race. However, Edwards simply bided his time and slowly crept up behind his Roush Fenway teammate and Johnson’s HMS machine.

AVONDALE, ARIZONA – NOVEMBER 08: Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Ally Chevrolet, walks on stage during pre-race ceremonies prior to the NASCAR Cup Series Season Finale 500 at Phoenix Raceway on November 08, 2020 in Avondale, Arizona. Jimmie Johnson is scheduled to retire from full-time NASCAR racing after 2020. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

The Atlanta race was special as it was his seventeenth Cup Series start in his career. It also marked his fourth race start in his maiden full-time season. As it turned out, Carl Edwards chased down Johnson for 39 laps and on the final lap, he made the pass stick and crossed the line in P1.

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FORT WORTH, TX – NOVEMBER 06: Carl Edwards, driver of the #19 Sport Clips Toyota, celebrates winning the rain-shortened NASCAR Sprint Cup Series AAA Texas 500 at Texas Motor Speedway on November 6, 2016 in Fort Worth, Texas. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

Soon, Edwards’ backflip would return at least 27 more times in his career. However, he never won a Cup Series race, though he came as high as second in 2011 with Roush Fenway Racing. In his final season in 2016, Carl Edwards even managed to finish in fourth place in the Cup Series championship.

Nevertheless, he still walked away from the sport with the 2007 Xfinity Series championship under his belt.

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MORE: WATCH: When Former NASCAR Star Carl Edwards Defeated F1 Legend Michael Schumacher

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Dhruv George

11411 articles

Dhruv George is a senior Formula One and NASCAR analyst for EssentiallySports, having authored nearly 12000 articles spanning different sports like F1, NASCAR, Tennis, NFL, and eSports. He graduated with a PG Diploma in Journalism from the Xavier Institute of Communications. Dhruv has also conducted interviews with F1 driver Pierre Gasly and Moto2 rider Tony Arbolino.

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