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Carl Edwards returns to Nationwide at Watkins Glen

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Carl Edwards in the 60 again? Flippin' sweet! (Getty Images)

Carl Edwards is coming back to Nationwide.

Earlier this year, with the pain of a Cup lost on a tiebreaker still fresh on his mind, Carl Edwards declared he would no longer run in the Nationwide series. It was a surprising announcement given that Edwards had successfully doubled up full-time rides in both Sprint and Nationwide since 2005.

The prevailing theory, of course, was that Edwards would be spending more time zeroing in on his Sprint Cup career without the "distraction" of a Nationwide career. Even so, he managed to win a championship and placed in the top three every single year he ran Nationwide. Last year, with Sprint Cup drivers barred from winning the championship, he nonetheless managed eight wins and 23 top-5s in 33 events.

But the solo-Cup adventure hasn't quite worked out so well. Edwards sits 11th in points, but with no wins to his credit is in very real danger of missing the Chase entirely.

Could the added preparation that comes from running a race on Saturday help him on Sunday? We'll find out at Watkins Glen, where Edwards plans to return to the track in the No. 60 Subway Ford.

"The Nationwide race at Watkins Glen is almost like a Sprint Cup event because of the length of the race," Edwards said in a release. "It's a very long and tough race, and there is a lot of competition with all the road-course specialists."

Whether this comes too late to turn Edwards' season around, we can't know. Either way, it'll give him better preparation for the Sunday race and, perhaps, pave the way for a return to the Chase. Once in the Chase, anything can happen ... as Edwards knows all too well.

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