Columbia native Carl Edwards led the most laps at Miami-Homestead, 119 of the 267, but he wasn’t leading when it mattered most. Trailing Tony Stewart by one second for the final 40 laps, Edwards was unable to catch Stewart who won the race and tie-breaker giving him the 2011 Sprint Cup Championship.
Stewart had early race trouble as his crew needed to repair a puncture in the front grill. Stewart dropped near the back and fell back by as many as 45 points behind Edwards. However, Stewart picked off spots, making 116 passes the entire race to eventually catch and pass Edwards late after a lengthy caution during a second rain delay.
Stewart won five of the final 10 races just to tie Edwards for the points lead. Never has NASCAR seen an end to the season quite like this race. Stewart becomes the first owner/driver to win the championship since the late Alan Kulwicki in 1992, and ends Jimmie Johnson’s record five-year title run.