Edwards was born in Columbia, Missouri. He grew up watching his father, Carl, Sr., race, and was inspired to do the same. Carl, Sr. has been racing modified stock cars and USAC midget sprint cars for over four decades, winning over 200 races. Carl, Jr.'s career began in 1993, when he started racing four-cylinder mini-sprints at age 13. His success was not far off, as in 1994, he won four feature races in the mini-sprint series at tracks in Missouri and Illinois. He added a combined total of 14 wins from the 1995 and 1996 seasons.
Edwards switched to dirt in 1997, racing in the IMCA modified division. It didn't take him long to find success there, either, as in 1998, he was crowned Rookie-of-the-Year in that same division at Holt Summit, Missouri's Capital Speedway. In 1999, he won 13 races in the track's Modified division, winning the NASCAR Track Championship.
Edwards' big break came in 2002, when he competed in 7 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series events for MB Motorsports. His best finish in the seven races was 8th. However, it was enough to impress Jack Roush, and Edwards became a full-time Truck Series competitor in 2003, driving the #99 Ford F-150 sponsored by Superchips. He won Rookie-of-the-Year honors in addition to three race wins, eventually finishing 8th in the points standings at the end of the season. In 2004, he notched three more race wins, including the season-opening Florida Dodge Dealers 250 at the Daytona International Speedway. At season's end, Edwards finished 4th in the points. In August of 2004, he made his Nextel Cup Series debut, replacing Jeff Burton, who left the team, in the #99 Ford Taurus for Roush Racing, at the Michigan International Speedway. He finished 10th.
In 2005, Edwards became a full-time driver in both the Nextel Cup and Busch Series. He has already won races in each, and he made history in the process of winning. On March 19, 2005, Edwards won the Aaron's 312 at the Atlanta Motor Speedway in Hampton, Georgia, recording his first Busch Series win. The next day, he beat Jimmie Johnson by 2-hundreths of a second to win the Golden Corral 500 at the same track for his first Nextel Cup Series win. Until this took place, no driver had ever won both the Busch and Nextel Cup Series races in the same weekend at Atlanta, although the feat had been pulled off numerous times before at other tracks by other drivers. Also, Edwards became the first driver in NASCAR history to pick up his first career Busch and Nextel Cup Series wins in the same weekend.
On June 12, 2005, Edwards picked up his second Nextel Cup win by taking the checkered flag at the Pocono 500 at the Pocono Raceway in Long Pond, Pennsylvania. The weekend was somewhat bittersweet for Edwards, as the Busch Series race at the Nashville Superspeedway in Lebanon, Tennessee had been rained out the night before, and rescheduled for the same day. Even worse, qualifying for that race had been rained out, too, and in NASCAR, when qualifying is rained out, the starting grid is set by owner points. Through this process, Edwards was awarded pole, but Hank Parker Jr. ended up driving the car to a 20th place finish.
Edwards got his fourth win at Texas and becoming the tenth different driver to win there and the fifth win there for Roush Racing. As of June 15, Edwards best 2006 finish was at Lowes Motor Speedway in the Coca-Cola 600 where he finished 3rd.
- Edwards is most popular among fans for celebrating his wins by doing a backflip off his car (or truck), a style of celebration he took from sprint car driver Tyler Walker, although Walker would run to gain enough momentum to do backflips, because a sprint car just isn't big enough to stand on. Edwards has competed against Walker in 2005, as Walker formally drove the #38 Akins Motorsports in the Busch Series. Seizing on the popularity of Edwards' trademark celebrations, Ford has recently ran several "Overactive Adrenaline Disorder" commercials featuring a "young Carl" performing backflips in his baby crib and on the couch.
- Edwards formerly dated Olympic gold medal-winning swimmer Amanda Beard, who was a NASCAR fan long before she and Edwards began dating.
- Edwards made his appearence on the February 22, 2006 episode of The Late Late Show with Craig Fegurson.
- Carl was ranked #1 in the 2006 Sporting News preseason poll
- 2007 Citizens Bank 400 (Michigan In ternational Speedway), Sharpie 500, (Bristol Motor Speedway
- 2005 Golden Corral 500 (Atlanta Motor Speedway), Pocono 500 (Pocono Raceway), Bass Pro Shops MBNA 500 (Atlanta Motor Speedway), Dickies 500 (Texas Motor Speedway)
- 2005 Aaron's 312 (Atlanta Motor Speedway), Funai 250 (Richmond International Raceway), Meijer 300 presented by Oreo (Kentucky Speedway), Ameriquest 300 (California Speedway)
Craftsman Truck SeriesEdit
- 2003 Built Ford Tough 225 presented by the Greater Cincinnati Ford Dealers (Kentucky Speedway), Power Stroke Diesel 200 (Indianapolis Raceway Park), Federated Auto Parts 200 (Nashville Superspeedway)
- 2004 Florida Dodge Dealers 250 (Daytona International Speedway), O'Reilly Auto Parts 250 (Kansas Speedway), O'Reilly 200 presented by Valvoline Maxlife (Bristol Motor Speedway)