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'Jack Roush's House' seemed haunted in Sunday's Texas 500


Carl Edwards stays cool, despite pit road frustrations (Photo: Getty Images for NASCAR)

   By Mike Mulhern

   FORT WORTH, Texas
   Greg Biffle came very close Sunday to showing once again why Texas Motor Speedway is sometimes called 'Jack Roush's House,' for the veteran car owner's many wins here.
   And teammate Carl Edward came very close too.
   But the Roush men stumbled:
   -- Jamie McMurray had transmission trouble. He finished 38th.   "We'd made a green flag pit stop, and I got halfway down the backstretch and it popped out of gear….and then it wouldn't go into any gear," McMurray said.
   -- David Ragan's engine overheated. He ran 37th. "Something like a hotdog wrapper cost us a top-five finish," Ragan griped. "We got some trash on the grill…and ultimately it blew up."
   --  Edwards had a bad pit stop the last time in. He finished 10th. "We went in leading, and came out 11th, and that's what cost us the race," Edwards said succinctly. "My guys are trying real hard, and we're all in this together…but we can do a better job than that."
   Edwards can really stay cool about something like that?
   "The way this works is I don't need anybody to tell me when I've done something wrong….and they don't need anybody to tell them," Edwards said. "Those guys want to win this race as bad as I do.
   "They don't yell at me when I hit the wall, so it's not my position to be mad at them."
    -- Matt Kenseth was a strong contender, but track position proved costly. He wound up fifth.
    Kenseth, who opened the season with wins at Daytona and California but then went stone cold, was relieved to have a good run again. "We've just been pathetic since California – our average finish was 27th," Kenseth said. "So to get a top five, get a little momentum going, that's what we needed."
   Track position – with the aerodynamics of this car and the speeds at this track – is critical, Kenseth said. "You can look at the scoreboard after everybody's done pitting, and whoever restarts in the lead is probably going to win," Kenseth said.
   "You just can't pass in these cars like you could.
   "And it's all about having perfect pit stops…and qualifying…and doing the right things for track position.
   "This car is just 'tight,' and it really likes clean air.
   "There were some guys who could do it here. Greg really drove through there. And Tony Stewart.
   "But it's pretty important to be positioned in the front."

Matt Kenseth found the lead, but just couldn't stay there (Photo: Getty Images for NASCAR)


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