NASCAR: Carl Edwards fuels additional return rumors

Carl Edwards, NASCAR (Photo by Matt Sullivan/Getty Images)
Carl Edwards, NASCAR (Photo by Matt Sullivan/Getty Images) /

Carl Edwards has been rumored to make a NASCAR return pretty much since the day he announced his abrupt retirement in 2017.

There has never been a NASCAR Cup Series driver whose retirement fans have been unwilling to fully accept, no matter how much time passes, than that of Carl Edwards.

Edwards, one of the four drivers in the 2016 Championship 4, made the surprising decision to retire from the sport before the 2017 season began, and he hasn’t competed in any NASCAR race since.

It seems like every year, sometimes more than once a year, a rumor emerges that the Columbia, Missouri native could return to NASCAR.

The most recent one emerged when he discussed visiting Trackhouse Racing Team’s shop. After all, Trackhouse Racing Team do run a third entry, the PROJECT91 car, in select races.

The 43-year-old finally returned to NASCAR for the first time since 2016 as a guest analyst in the Fox Sports broadcast booth at Darlington Raceway back in May.

Not even a month and a half after ending a more than six-year hiatus, he returned this past weekend at Nashville Superspeedway, where he was introduced as the inaugural member of the venue’s new “Legends Plaza.”

While he admitted at Darlington Raceway that it has been challenging to stay away from the sport for as long as he has, he once again confirmed at Nashville Superspeedway that he has no plans to return to NASCAR, despite the rumors.

Here is what Edwards had to say, according to Motorsport.

"“I’m not planning on doing any [NASCAR] driving. This is the tip of the spear. These guys are so good that I would be terribly slow, and I would have to prep a lot. Seriously, that’s the truth. For me, racing is a risky sport. There’s risk involved and if I’m not committed 100 percent, I just don’t feel it’s the right thing for me to go do for fun. I’ve been paying attention. The hits are hard. They still are. That’s one of the reasons I’m not racing is because I’m aware of that."

However, he didn’t totally rule it out, taking somewhat of a “never say never” approach.

"“But I tell you what, if [the desire] does creep in, that’s it’s something we want to go do, I promise you I’ll give it 100 percent. I’ll do the best I can. But right now, I’m not planning on anything.”"

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Knowing the prevalence of Edwards return rumors over the last six and a half years, surely this caveat will be one that is used to justify further speculation about the fan-favorite making a comeback.