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The 2017 Daytona 500, the 59th running of the event, was held on February 26, 2017, and was won by Kurt Busch. This was Busch's 1st Daytona 500 win. Ryan Blaney finished 2nd, and A. J. Allmendinger finished 3rd. This race was contested for 200 laps on the 2.5-mile (4.0 km) asphalt superspeedway. It was the first race of the 2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season, and also marked the 1st race for Monster Energy as the new title sponsor for NASCAR's top series, replacing Sprint. Jeffrey Earnhardt made NASCAR history when he became the 1st ever 4th generation driver to compete in the Daytona 500.

2017 Daytona 500
Race details[1][2][3][4][5][6][7][8][9][10][11][12]
Race 1 of 36 in the 2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series
2017 Daytona 500 logo.png
Date February 26, 2017 (2017-02-26)
Location Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida
Course Permanent racing facility
2.5 mi (4 km)
Distance 200 laps, 500 mi (800 km)
Average speed 143.187 mph (230.437 km/h)
Pole position
Driver Hendrick Motorsports
Time 46.663
Qualifying race winners
Duel 1 Winner Chase Elliott Hendrick Motorsports
Duel 2 Winner Denny Hamlin Joe Gibbs Racing
Most laps led
Driver Kevin Harvick Stewart-Haas Racing
Laps 50
Winner
No. 41 Kurt Busch Stewart-Haas Racing
Television in the United States
Network Fox
Announcers Mike Joy, Jeff Gordon and Darrell Waltrip
Nielsen Ratings 6.5/15 (Overnight)[13]
6.6/15 (Final)[14]
11.9 million viewers[14]
Radio in the United States
Radio MRN
Booth Announcers Joe Moore, Jeff Striegle and Rusty Wallace
Turn Announcers Dave Moody (1 & 2), Mike Bagley (Backstretch) and Kyle Rickey (3 & 4)

Contents

BackgroundEdit

 
Daytona International Speedway, the track where the race was held

Daytona International Speedway is one of six superspeedways to hold NASCAR races, the others being Michigan International Speedway, Auto Club Speedway, Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Pocono Raceway and Talladega Superspeedway.[15] The standard track at Daytona International Speedway is a four-turn superspeedway that is 2.5 miles (4.0 km) long.[16] The track's turns are banked at 31 degrees, while the front stretch, the location of the finish line, is banked at 18 degrees.[16]

All three of NASCAR's main national series adopted a new race format and points system for the 2017 season. Under the new format, each race was divided into three stages. A competition caution is held at the end of the first and second stage, and bonus championship points are awarded to the top 10 drivers. For the 500, the first and second stages each comprised 60 laps of the scheduled distance, with the remainder comprising the third. The leader at the end of each stage, including the overall winner, also receives points that are carried over into their total if they qualify for the season-ending playoffs (renamed from the Chase for the Championship).[17][18][19]

The race also introduced stricter rules in regards to vehicle repair after on-track accidents; teams are only allowed to repair their cars on pit road in five-minute windows with six crew members, starting once the car crosses the pit road commitment line, and ending when it reaches minimum speed after exiting pit road. Repairs are restricted to repairing sheet metal, and re-attaching or reinforcing body panels; body panels may not be replaced. If the vehicle cannot be repaired on pit road and must be taken to the garage, more than six crew members work on the vehicle, or the five-minute clock expires, the vehicle will be removed from the race and can not return.[20][21][22]

Other technical changes took place for the 2017 season and Daytona 500, including having one fewer set of tires available for the race,[23] teams being required to start the race with the same tires used in qualifying,[23] restrictor plate size openings reduced from 5764 inch (23 mm) to 78 inch (22 mm),[24] and new structural safety features—some of which are specifically mandated at Daytona and Talladega.[24]

Entry listEdit

No. Driver Team Manufacturer
1 Jamie McMurray Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet
2 Brad Keselowski Team Penske Ford
3 Austin Dillon Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet
4 Kevin Harvick Stewart-Haas Racing Ford
5 Kasey Kahne Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet
6 Trevor Bayne Roush Fenway Racing Ford
7 Elliott Sadler Tommy Baldwin Racing Chevrolet
10 Danica Patrick Stewart-Haas Racing Ford
11 Denny Hamlin Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota
13 Ty Dillon (R) Germain Racing Chevrolet
14 Clint Bowyer Stewart-Haas Racing Ford
15 Michael Waltrip Premium Motorsports Toyota
17 Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Roush Fenway Racing Ford
18 Kyle Busch Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota
19 Daniel Suárez (R) Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota
20 Matt Kenseth Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota
21 Ryan Blaney Wood Brothers Racing Ford
22 Joey Logano Team Penske Ford
23 Joey Gase (i) BK Racing Toyota
24 Chase Elliott Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet
27 Paul Menard Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet
31 Ryan Newman Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet
32 Matt DiBenedetto Go Fas Racing Ford
33 Jeffrey Earnhardt Circle Sport – The Motorsports Group Chevrolet
34 Landon Cassill Front Row Motorsports Ford
37 Chris Buescher JTG Daugherty Racing Chevrolet
38 David Ragan Front Row Motorsports Ford
41 Kurt Busch Stewart-Haas Racing Ford
42 Kyle Larson Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet
43 Aric Almirola Richard Petty Motorsports Ford
47 A. J. Allmendinger JTG Daugherty Racing Chevrolet
48 Jimmie Johnson Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet
51 Timmy Hill Rick Ware Racing Chevrolet
55 Reed Sorenson Premium Motorsports Toyota
72 Cole Whitt TriStar Motorsports Ford
75 Brendan Gaughan Beard Motorsports Chevrolet
77 Erik Jones (R) Furniture Row Racing Toyota
78 Martin Truex Jr. Furniture Row Racing Toyota
83 Corey LaJoie (R) BK Racing Toyota
88 Dale Earnhardt Jr. Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet
95 Michael McDowell Leavine Family Racing Chevrolet
96 D. J. Kennington Gaunt Brothers Racing Toyota
Official entry list

PracticeEdit

First practice (February 18)Edit

Joey Logano was the fastest in the first practice session with a time of 46.604 seconds and a speed of 193.116 mph (310.790 km/h).[25]

Pos No. Driver Team Manufacturer Time Speed
1 22 Joey Logano Team Penske Ford 46.604 193.116
2 43 Aric Almirola Richard Petty Motorsports Ford 46.619 193.054
3 2 Brad Keselowski Team Penske Ford 46.621 193.046
Official first practice results

QualifyingEdit

Qualifying for the Daytona 500 is different from any other race weekend because the starting lineup for the race, except for the two drivers that post the two fastest timed laps in the final round of qualifying, isn't set on qualifying day. It sets the lineup for the two Duel races the following Thursday.

Unlike qualifying at non-restrictor plate races, qualifying at Daytona International Speedway and Talladega Superspeedway consists of two rounds of cars being sent out one at a time to make a single timed lap. The fastest 12 advance to the final round to run for the pole position.

Chase Elliott scored the pole for the Daytona 500 with a time of 46.663 and a speed of 192.872 mph (310.397 km/h).[26] He said afterwards that everyone at Hendrick Motorsports did "a lot of work this off-season. This team definitely has a knack for these plate tracks, as they showed with Jeff Gordon and then last year with here and Talladega." He also mentioned how these accomplishments don't "just happen by staying the same, as everybody knows. Everyone is always trying to get better and make their cars better and faster, and the engine shop is always finding new things. So I think that's just proof that they're improving with everybody else and taking that next step, which is really impressive." He ended by saying he was "happy to be a part of it, and hopefully we can run good next Sunday."[27]

Qualifying resultsEdit

Pos No. Driver Team Manufacturer R1 R2
1 (1) 24 Chase Elliott Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 46.800 46.663
2 (2) 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr. Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 46.810 46.665
3 (1) 2 Brad Keselowski Team Penske Ford 46.820 46.707
4 (2) 14 Clint Bowyer Stewart-Haas Racing Ford 46.854 46.736
5 (1) 78 Martin Truex Jr. Furniture Row Racing Toyota 46.826 46.800
6 (2) 11 Denny Hamlin Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 46.845 46.823
7 (1) 4 Kevin Harvick Stewart-Haas Racing Ford 46.867 46.829
8 (2) 5 Kasey Kahne Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 46.864 46.853
9 (1) 20 Matt Kenseth Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 46.840 46.871
10 (2) 31 Ryan Newman Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 46.859 46.876
11 (1) 18 Kyle Busch Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 46.855 46.932
12 (2) 13 Ty Dillon (R) Germain Racing Chevrolet 46.869 47.009
13 (1) 17 Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Roush Fenway Racing Ford 46.874
14 (2) 48 Jimmie Johnson Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 46.900
15 (1) 19 Daniel Suárez (R) Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 46.905
16 (2) 42 Kyle Larson Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet 46.923
17 (1) 22 Joey Logano Team Penske Ford 46.929
18 (2) 21 Ryan Blaney Wood Brothers Racing Ford 46.937
19 (1) 6 Trevor Bayne Roush Fenway Racing Ford 46.944
20 (2) 77 Erik Jones (R) Furniture Row Racing Toyota 46.950
21 (1) 27 Paul Menard Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 46.989
22 (2) 41 Kurt Busch Stewart-Haas Racing Ford 47.017
23 (1) 1 Jamie McMurray Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet 47.023
24 (2) 10 Danica Patrick Stewart-Haas Racing Ford 47.042
25 (1) 43 Aric Almirola Richard Petty Motorsports Ford 47.123
26 (2) 3 Austin Dillon Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 47.127
27 (1) 34 Landon Cassill Front Row Motorsports Ford 47.285
28 (2) 47 A. J. Allmendinger JTG Daugherty Racing Chevrolet 47.298
29 (1) 32 Matt DiBenedetto Go Fas Racing Ford 47.355
30 (2) 95 Michael McDowell Leavine Family Racing Chevrolet 47.438
31 (1) 37 Chris Buescher JTG Daugherty Racing Chevrolet 47.513
32 (2) 38 David Ragan Front Row Motorsports Ford 47.518
33 (1) 75 Brendan Gaughan (i)* Beard Motorsports Chevrolet 47.545
34 (1) 72 Cole Whitt TriStar Motorsports Ford 47.592
35 (2) 15 Michael Waltrip Premium Motorsports Toyota 47.599
36 (2) 7 Elliott Sadler (i)* Tommy Baldwin Racing Chevrolet 47.730
37 (1) 55 Reed Sorenson* Premium Motorsports Toyota 48.043
38 (2) 96 D. J. Kennington* Gaunt Brothers Racing Toyota 48.175
39 (1) 23 Joey Gase (i) BK Racing Toyota 48.428
40 (1) 83 Corey LaJoie (R)* BK Racing Toyota 48.584
41 (2) 33 Jeffrey Earnhardt Circle Sport – The Motorsports Group Chevrolet 48.710
42 (2) 51 Timmy Hill (i)* Rick Ware Racing Chevrolet 48.886
Official Qualifying Results
  • -Indicates open team. Gaughan and Sadler were the two fastest open teams in qualifying.

(1) and (2) represent which duel a driver goes in. Odd numbered positions go to Duel 1, and even numbered positions go to Duel 2.

Practice (post–qualifying)Edit

Both practice sessions scheduled for Thursday following qualifying was cancelled due to rain.

Can-Am DuelsEdit

The Can-Am Duels are a pair of NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races held in conjunction with the Daytona 500 annually in February at Daytona International Speedway. They consist of two races 60 laps and 150 miles (240 km) in length, which serve as heat races that set the lineup for the Daytona 500. Both races sets the lineup for positions 3–32. The first race sets the lineup for cars that qualified in odd–numbered positions on pole qualifying day. The second race sets the lineup for cars that qualified in even–numbered positions. Positions 33–36 are filled by the four drivers that posted the fastest lap in pole qualifying that didn't lock in a position in the Duel's. Positions 37–40 are set by the four cars highest in the 2016 owner's points that didn't lock in a position in the Duels and weren't among the cars that posted the four fastest timed laps in pole qualifying.

Duel 1Edit

Chase Elliott held off late charges in the closing laps to win the first Can-Am Duel race.[28]

Restarting with eight laps to go, the Fords of Kevin Harvick and Brad Keselowski formed a line on the top side to make a charge at him. The line started stalling out with five to go and was no match for Elliott, only challenged by Harvick and Jamie McMurray.

He said in victory lane that he certainly thought he had a chance of winning on Sunday and that if he "didn't feel that way...I'd stay home. I feel like we have a shot on Sunday. I feel like we had a shot before we got down here. Tonight's result hasn't changed my opinion on that. I'm looking forward to it, obviously. You love to get that qualifying spot on Sunday, but we really earned it tonight, to start on the front row, which is even better. It was definitely a great way to start the season."[29]

The eight-lap run to the finish was set up by a two-car wreck with 12 laps to go. Coming through the tri-oval heading towards Turn 1, Corey LaJoie rear-ended Reed Sorenson, who checked up, turning Sorenson down into Paul Menard, sending Sorenson down the track and into the inside retaining wall.[30] Sorenson, who missed the race as a result of this wreck, said he guessed LaJoie "felt like he did what he had to do to make the race. I hope he's proud of that part of it. There's a lot of pressure going in to making this race. It's a very big deal for a small team like ours."[31]

Duel 1 resultsEdit

Pos Grid No Driver Team Manufacturer Laps
1 1 24 Chase Elliott Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 60
2 12 1 Jamie McMurray Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet 60
3 4 4 Kevin Harvick Stewart-Haas Racing Ford 60
4 2 2 Brad Keselowski Team Penske Ford 60
5 5 20 Matt Kenseth Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 60
6 10 6 Trevor Bayne Roush Fenway Racing Ford 60
7 13 43 Aric Almirola Richard Petty Motorsports Ford 60
8 9 22 Joey Logano Team Penske Ford 60
9 18 72 Cole Whitt TriStar Motorsports Ford 60
10 8 19 Daniel Suárez (R) Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 60
11 6 18 Kyle Busch Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 60
12 7 17 Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Roush Fenway Racing Ford 60
13 15 32 Matt DiBenedetto Go Fas Racing Ford 60
14 14 34 Landon Cassill Front Row Motorsports Ford 60
15 20 23 Joey Gase (i) BK Racing Toyota 60
16 21 83 Corey LaJoie (R) BK Racing Toyota 60
17 17 75 Brendan Gaughan (i) Beard Motorsports Chevrolet 60
18 11 27 Paul Menard Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 59
19 19 55 Reed Sorenson Premium Motorsports Toyota 48
20 3 78 Martin Truex Jr. Furniture Row Racing Toyota 60
21 16 37 Chris Buescher JTG Daugherty Racing Chevrolet 60
Official race results

Duel 2Edit

Dale Earnhardt Jr. dominated the second Duel race leading 53 of 60 laps. That total, however, didn't include the final lap as he lost the lead for the victory on the final lap to Denny Hamlin.[32]

Hamlin received a push from Austin Dillon and faked Earnhardt out on the backstretch to pass him going into Turn 3 to win the second Duel race. He credited Dillon for the "great push there....We worked really well together that entire race. I'll keep that in mind in the 500....I can't thank this team enough for a great job by Wheels (Mike Wheeler, crew chief). FedEx announced their renewal today so that's a great sign of a great year hopefully to come."[33]

With 18 laps remaining, Ryan Blaney and Jimmie Johnson made contact on the backstretch. Five laps later, Johnson blows a right-side tire and slams the wall in Turn 3, setting up the final nine laps.[34]

Duel 2 resultsEdit

Pos Grid No Driver Team Manufacturer Laps
1 3 11 Denny Hamlin Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 60
2 2 14 Clint Bowyer Stewart-Haas Racing Ford 60
3 11 41 Kurt Busch Stewart-Haas Racing Ford 60
4 13 3 Austin Dillon Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 60
5 1 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr. Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 60
6 12 10 Danica Patrick Stewart-Haas Racing Ford 60
7 5 31 Ryan Newman Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 60
8 8 42 Kyle Larson Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet 60
9 6 13 Ty Dillon (R) Germain Racing Chevrolet 60
10 16 38 David Ragan Front Row Motorsports Ford 60
11 15 95 Michael McDowell Leavine Family Racing Chevrolet 60
12 7 48 Jimmie Johnson Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 60
13 4 5 Kasey Kahne Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 60
14 19 96 D. J. Kennington Gaunt Brothers Racing Toyota 60
15 18 7 Elliott Sadler (i) Tommy Baldwin Racing Chevrolet 60
16 17 15 Michael Waltrip Premium Motorsports Toyota 60
17 20 33 Jeffrey Earnhardt Circle Sport – The Motorsports Group Chevrolet 60
18 10 77 Erik Jones (R) Furniture Row Racing Toyota 59
19 9 21 Ryan Blaney Wood Brothers Racing Ford 55
20 21 51 Timmy Hill (i) Rick Ware Racing Chevrolet 29
21 14 47 A. J. Allmendinger JTG Daugherty Racing Chevrolet 60
Official race results

Starting lineupEdit

Pos No. Driver Team Manufacturer Notes
1 24 Chase Elliott Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet Fastest in pole qualifying
2 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr. Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet Second in pole qualifying
3 1 Jamie McMurray Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet Second in Duel 1
4 11 Denny Hamlin Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota Duel race #2 winner
5 4 Kevin Harvick Stewart-Haas Racing Ford Third in Duel 1
6 14 Clint Bowyer Stewart-Haas Racing Ford Second in Duel 2
7 2 Brad Keselowski Team Penske Ford Fourth in Duel 1
8 41 Kurt Busch Stewart-Haas Racing Ford Third in Duel 2
9 20 Matt Kenseth Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota Fifth in Duel 1
10 3 Austin Dillon Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet Fourth in Duel 2
11 6 Trevor Bayne Roush Fenway Racing Ford Sixth in Duel 1
12 10 Danica Patrick Stewart-Haas Racing Ford Sixth in Duel 2
13 43 Aric Almirola Richard Petty Motorsports Ford Seventh in Duel 1
14 31 Ryan Newman Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet Seventh in Duel 2
15 22 Joey Logano Team Penske Ford Eighth in Duel 1
16 42 Kyle Larson Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet Eighth in Duel 2
17 72 Cole Whitt TriStar Motorsports Ford Ninth in Duel 1
18 13 Ty Dillon (R) Germain Racing Chevrolet Ninth in Duel 2
19 19 Daniel Suárez (R) Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 10th in Duel 1
20 38 David Ragan Front Row Motorsports Ford 10th in Duel 2
21 18 Kyle Busch Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 11th in Duel 1
22 95 Michael McDowell Leavine Family Racing Chevrolet 11th in Duel 2
23 17 Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Roush Fenway Racing Ford 12th in Duel 1
24 48 Jimmie Johnson[a] Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 12th in Duel 2
25 32 Matt DiBenedetto Go Fas Racing Ford 13th in Duel 1
26 5 Kasey Kahne Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 13th in Duel 2
27 34 Landon Cassill Front Row Motorsports Ford 14th in Duel 1
28 96 D. J. Kennington Gaunt Brothers Racing Toyota 14th in Duel 2
29 23 Joey Gase (i) BK Racing Toyota 15th in Duel 1
30 15 Michael Waltrip Premium Motorsports Toyota 16th in Duel 2
31 83 Corey LaJoie BK Racing Toyota 16th in Duel 1
32 33 Jeffrey Earnhardt Circle Sport – The Motorsports Group Chevrolet 17th in Duel 2
33 27 Paul Menard[a] Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 18th in Duel 1
34 77 Erik Jones (R) Furniture Row Racing Toyota 18th in Duel 2
35 78 Martin Truex Jr.[b] Furniture Row Racing Toyota 20th in Duel 1
36 21 Ryan Blaney[a] Wood Brothers Racing Ford 19th in Duel 2
37 37 Chris Buescher[b] JTG Daugherty Racing Chevrolet 21st in Duel 1
38 47 A. J. Allmendinger[b] JTG Daugherty Racing Chevrolet 21st in Duel 2
39 75 Brendan Gaughan (i) Beard Motorsports Chevrolet Qualifying speed
40 7 Elliott Sadler (i) Tommy Baldwin Racing Chevrolet Qualifying speed
Did not qualify
41 51 Timmy Hill (i) Rick Ware Racing Chevrolet
42 55 Reed Sorenson Premium Motorsports Toyota
Official starting lineup

Practice (post–Duels)Edit

Second practiceEdit

David Ragan was the fastest in the second practice session with a time of 46.178 seconds and a speed of 194.898 mph (313.658 km/h).[36]

Pos No. Driver Team Manufacturer Time Speed
1 38 David Ragan Front Row Motorsports Ford 46.178 194.898
2 5 Kasey Kahne Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 46.203 194.793
3 24 Chase Elliott Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 46.207 194.776
Official second practice results

Third practiceEdit

Kyle Busch was the fastest in the third practice session with a time of 45.624 seconds and a speed of 197.265 mph (317.467 km/h).[37]

Pos No. Driver Team Manufacturer Time Speed
1 18 Kyle Busch Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 45.624 197.265
2 20 Matt Kenseth Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 45.626 197.256
3 11 Denny Hamlin Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 45.660 197.109
Official third practice results

Final practiceEdit

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. was the fastest in the final practice session with a time of 45.351 seconds and a speed of 198.452 mph (319.378 km/h).[38]

Pos No. Driver Team Manufacturer Time Speed
1 17 Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Roush Fenway Racing Ford 45.351 198.452
2 22 Joey Logano Team Penske Ford 45.743 196.751
3 2 Brad Keselowski Team Penske Ford 45.744 196.747
Official final practice results

RaceEdit

Stage 1Edit

Chase Elliott led the field to the green flag at 2:40 p.m. He jumped ahead of teammate Dale Earnhardt Jr. to lead the first lap. Earnhardt was caught in the middle of the inside and outside lines with no draft help, also known as the "sucker hole," and fell back through the pack on the fourth lap. Jamie McMurray used the bottom line to take the lead on the eighth lap. Joey Logano made an unscheduled stop for a loose wheel on lap 14. A group of cars, all Toyota's, hit pit road on lap 17. Erik Jones overshot his pit box and Daniel Suárez was hit with a pass through penalty for speeding. Matt Kenseth came down pit road a second time for a loose wheel; a result of flat-spotting his tires on his first stop.[39]

During the Toyota pit cycle, Kevin Harvick took the lead from McMurray on lap 18. The lapped car of Logano blocked his advanced and allowed Elliott to power by on the outside line on lap 23. The top line started losing steam, however, and Harvick took back the lead on lap 26. Another group of cars hit pit road on lap 31. Corey LaJoie mistimed his pit entry and aborted right before the entrance of pit road. When he did, he almost slammed into the rear of Clint Bowyer. Then, his car continued up the track, slammed the outside wall in the tri-oval and left debris up against the wall, bringing out the first caution of the race. Kurt Busch restarted the race from the tail end of the field for speeding on pit road.[40]

The race restarted on lap 34. Kyle Busch lead the outside line charge past Harvick on the backstretch to take the lead on lap 43. Truex followed likewise the next lap, powering by Busch on the top line going into Turn 1 to take the lead. Busch took it back on lap 45. Ryan Blaney dove under him on the backstretch to take the lead on lap 49. David Ragan hit the wall on the frontstretch the following lap, but the race continued under green. Busch retook the lead on lap 52. Ricky Stenhouse Jr. cut down a tire in Turn 3, but the race remained green. Busch came to the line the leader at the conclusion of stage 1 and the second caution flew on lap 61 for the end of the stage. Harvick exited pit road first. Austin Dillon restarted the race from the tail end of the field for speeding.[39]

Stage 2Edit

The race restarted on lap 68. For most of the second stage, the racing was more calm and collected. The outside line was the strongest line and the inside started dissipating by lap 78. The Toyota cars repeated their stage 1 move of short-pitting the segment on lap 81. Jimmie Johnson took the lead as a number of cars, mostly Ford's, came to pit road on lap 90. Earnhardt took the lead for the first time on lap 97.

Rounding Turn 3 on lap 105, Busch's car suffered either a left or right-rear tire blowout, then spun towards the wall and into Jones, Kenseth and Ty Dillon, causing a 6-car pileup.[41] Race leader Earnhardt was clipped by Busch and slammed the wall.[42] He said he didn't "know what happened there with the No. 18 (Busch) he just got turned around. I tried to get the wheel turned and get down the race track but I lifted off the gas to miss it, and got on the splitter a little bit and the car went straight. We jumped him, and got in the wall a little bit. Wasn't too hard of a hit. We thought we could get the car fixed, and get back out there and see what we could do with the rest of the day and make up some spots maybe. But, there is just too much damage. The radiator is pushed back. The toe is all messed up. The front suspension is knocked around pretty bad so the upper A-frame is laid over on the motor. We just can't drive it like that."[43] He checked out of the infield care center with no health complications.[44] Earnhardt, who missed 18 races last season due to a concussion, credited his new headrest for walking away without another one, saying "the (older) headrest, when you fly into the wall, it's like getting hit with a baseball bat. That car will take a few (G-forces) and if you have a lot of distance there, you can double the G's. We talked to NASCAR over the winter and they helped me understand how to better withstand those wrecks. We have (the headrest) tight on both sides."[45] Busch took his frustration out on Goodyear.[46] "Nothing that we did wrong," Busch said to FOX. "Obviously Goodyear tires just aren't very good at holding air. It's very frustrating when we have that every single year we've been here. Last year we had it as well too. It wrecked us in practice and tore up a car."[47] Kenseth finished the race in 40th, his third career last-place finish.[48] This brought out the third caution and cleanup necessitated a 17-minute red flag period. Elliott Sadler was the leader when the race resumed under caution, but surrendered the lead to Harvick when he hit pit road.[39]

The race restarted on lap 113 and Harvick led all the way to the end of stage 2 as the fourth caution flew for the stage conclusion. All but the first eight cars opted to pit under the caution.[39]

Stage 3Edit

The race restarted on lap 125. Kyle Larson took the position for a brief moment, but Elliott powered by on the outside line and retook the lead on lap 126. Kasey Kahne on the inside line edged his teammate at the line to take the lead for the first time on lap 127. On the same lap, McMurray shoved Johnson down the backstretch when Johnson got loose, turned down into Trevor Bayne and pin-balled through the middle of the pack in Turn 3, collecting 14 cars.[49] This brought out the fifth caution. Johnson said afterwards that the whole wreck was avoidable, "and it wasn't called for. From the minute I got off of Turn 2 on the entire back straightaway, I kept getting hit, and the rear tires are off the ground."[50]

The race restarted with 67 laps to go. With 65 to go, Blaney signaled on the backstretch that he was coming to pit road this lap, believing he had a tire going down. Exiting Turn 4, he started decelerating to dive onto pit road when Sadler swerved up the track to avoid him. This clipped both Bayne and Stenhouse, sent them down the track and into the inside wall, bringing out the sixth caution. Kahne took the lead prior to the caution[39]

The race restarted with 59 to go. Heading down the backstretch, McMurray, in the top line, tried passing to the inside of Elliott, but his advance was blocked. He checked up and got hooked into the outside wall by Brendan Gaughan. Suárez swerved to the left to avoid a t-bone collision with McMurray, only to collide with Ryan Newman. The accordion effect resulted in an 11-car wreck that brought out the seventh caution.[51] "I haven't seen the replay yet," Keselowski said after being caught up in the wreck, "but everybody wrecked in front of me. We had just pitted and were running really good, right up at the front where we needed to be in contention for a solid finish and hopefully a win. … That is unfortunate."[52] Austin Dillon took the lead prior to the caution.[39]

The race restarted with 52 to go. Logano took the lead with 51 to go. On the backstretch with 50 to go, Elliott shunted Joey Gase, which sent him into the outside wall and down the track, bringing out the eighth caution. Cole Whitt opted not to pit under the caution and assumed the lead.[39]

The race restarted with 47 to go. Whitt lead the first lap after the restart, thanks to a push from Logano on the inside line, but Aric Almirola powered by Whitt on the outside to take the lead with 45 to go. Suddenly, Almirola slowed up and fell back, handing the lead to Larson with 43 to go. After battling side-by-side for a few laps, Logano took the lead with 37 to go. The top-five raced single-file with 31 to go. Kurt Busch led the outside line charge before Elliott took it over with 27 to go. The next lap, he cleared Logano for the race lead on the backstretch. With 20 to go, the bottom line disappeared and the top-12 cars formed a breakaway draft running up against the wall. Blaney broke out of line to lead the inside line's charge with 10 to go, but they made no progress and rejoined the top line with seven to go.[53] With four to go, Elliott ran out of gas and Martin Truex Jr. took the lead in Turn 4.[54] With two to go, the same fate befell Truex. Larson took command of the race with one lap to go.[55] He also ran out of gas; Busch passed him exiting Turn 2 and won the 59th running of the Daytona 500.[56]

Post-raceEdit

Driver commentsEdit

"There is nothing predictable about this race anymore and the more years that have gone by that I didn't win I kept trying to go back to patterns that I had seen in the past," Busch said in victory lane. "My mirror fell off with 30 laps to go and I couldn't even see out the back. And I thought that was an omen. Throw caution to the wind. The more unpredictability that keeps unfolding at the Daytona 500, I predicted it. It just got crazy and wild and I am so proud of all the drivers at the end. We put on a show for a full fuel run and nobody took each other out and it was one of the smartest chess games I have seen out there. All the hard work that Ford and SHR put into this -- this Ford Fusion is in Daytona's victory lane."[57] Team owner Tony Stewart, who failed to win the Daytona 500 in 17 attempts, said if he knew he "would retire and win the next race, I would have retired 17 years ago and got it that way. It's a pretty cool deal. This is one that we've waited for for a long, long time."[58]

Blaney, who scored a career-best finish of runner-up despite running out of gas on the final lap, said he "tried to make a move with 10 to go and I didn't go anywhere. I thought we were kind of stuck. Luckily, we had the 22 with us. I kind of helped him and he kind of helped me. Late there we got a big run into (Turn) 1 and we kind of all separated and I got a big pull. I got to second behind the 41 somehow and that kept us going the whole way. I laid back to the 47 thinking I'd get a good run and I was sputtering and running out of gas on the backstretch."[59]

Michael Waltrip, who finished eighth – and was the highest finishing Toyota driver – in his final career NASCAR start, said this race will "be a great memory! I felt like so many times, I was in the middle of a crash and I missed it. You do a good job and get lucky. At the end, I just lost the draft, and that's unfortunate because I was able to weave my way past people. I had a really good-handling car."[60]

Race resultsEdit

Stage ResultsEdit

Stage 1 Laps: 60

Pos No Driver Team Manufacturer Points
1 18 Kyle Busch Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 10
2 4 Kevin Harvick Stewart-Haas Racing Ford 9
3 21 Ryan Blaney Wood Brothers Racing Ford 8
4 2 Brad Keselowski Team Penske Ford 7
5 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr. Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 6
6 42 Kyle Larson Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet 5
7 1 Jamie McMurray Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet 4
8 11 Denny Hamlin Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 3
9 48 Jimmie Johnson Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 2
10 10 Danica Patrick Stewart-Haas Racing Ford 1
Official stage one results

Stage 2 Laps: 60

Pos No Driver Team Manufacturer Points
1 4 Kevin Harvick Stewart-Haas Racing Ford 10
2 22 Joey Logano Team Penske Ford 9
3 41 Kurt Busch Stewart-Haas Racing Ford 8
4 2 Brad Keselowski Team Penske Ford 7
5 10 Danica Patrick Stewart-Haas Racing Ford 6
6 47 A. J. Allmendinger JTG Daugherty Racing Chevrolet 5
7 14 Clint Bowyer Stewart-Haas Racing Ford 4
8 42 Kyle Larson Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet 3
9 31 Ryan Newman Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 2
10 21 Ryan Blaney Wood Brothers Racing Ford 1
Official stage two results

Final Stage ResultsEdit

Stage 3 Laps: 80

Pos Grid No Driver Team Manufacturer Laps Points
1 8 41 Kurt Busch Stewart-Haas Racing Ford 200 48
2 36 21 Ryan Blaney Wood Brothers Racing Ford 200 44
3 38 47 A. J. Allmendinger JTG Daugherty Racing Chevrolet 200 39
4 13 43 Aric Almirola Richard Petty Motorsports Ford 200 33
5 33 27 Paul Menard Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 200 32
6 15 22 Joey Logano Team Penske Ford 200 40
7 26 5 Kasey Kahne Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 200 30
8 30 15 Michael Waltrip Premium Motorsports Toyota 200 29
9 25 32 Matt DiBenedetto Go Fas Racing Ford 200 28
10 11 6 Trevor Bayne Roush Fenway Racing Ford 200 27
11 39 75 Brendan Gaughan (i) Beard Motorsports Chevrolet 200 0
12 16 42 Kyle Larson Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet 200 33
13 35 78 Martin Truex Jr. Furniture Row Racing Toyota 200 24
14 1 24 Chase Elliott Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 200 23
15 22 95 Michael McDowell Leavine Family Racing Chevrolet 200 22
16 27 34 Landon Cassill Front Row Motorsports Ford 199 21
17 4 11 Denny Hamlin Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 199 23
18 17 72 Cole Whitt TriStar Motorsports Ford 199 19
19 10 3 Austin Dillon Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 199 18
20 40 7 Elliott Sadler (i) Tommy Baldwin Racing Chevrolet 199 0
21 14 31 Ryan Newman Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 198 18
22 5 4 Kevin Harvick Stewart-Haas Racing Ford 197 34
23 29 23 Joey Gase (i) BK Racing Toyota 196 0
24 31 83 Corey LaJoie (R) BK Racing Toyota 193 13
25 20 38 David Ragan Front Row Motorsports Ford 188 12
26 32 33 Jeffrey Earnhardt Circle Sport – The Motorsports Group Chevrolet 145 11
27 7 2 Brad Keselowski Team Penske Ford 143 24
28 3 1 Jamie McMurray Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet 141 13
29 19 19 Daniel Suárez (R) Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 141 8
30 18 13 Ty Dillon (R) Germain Racing Chevrolet 140 7
31 23 17 Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Roush Fenway Racing Ford 133 6
32 6 14 Clint Bowyer Stewart-Haas Racing Ford 128 9
33 12 10 Danica Patrick Stewart-Haas Racing Ford 128 11
34 24 48 Jimmie Johnson Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 127 5
35 37 37 Chris Buescher JTG Daugherty Racing Chevrolet 127 2
36 28 96 D. J. Kennington Gaunt Brothers Racing Toyota 127 1
37 2 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr. Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 106 7
38 21 18 Kyle Busch Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 103 11
39 34 77 Erik Jones (R) Furniture Row Racing Toyota 103 1
40 9 20 Matt Kenseth Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 103 1
Official race results

Race statisticsEdit

  • Lead changes: 37 among 18 different drivers
  • Cautions/Laps: 8 for 40
  • Red flags: 1 for 17 minutes
  • Time of race: 3 hours, 29 minutes and 31 seconds
  • Average speed: 143.187 miles per hour (230.437 km/h)

MediaEdit

TelevisionEdit

Since 2001—with the exception of 2002, 2004 and 2006—the Daytona 500 has been carried by Fox in the United States. The booth crew consisted of longtime NASCAR lap-by-lap announcer Mike Joy, three–time Daytona 500 champion Jeff Gordon, and 1989 race winner Darrell Waltrip. Pit road was manned by Jamie Little, Chris Neville, Vince Welch and Matt Yocum.

Fox Television
Booth announcers Pit reporters
Lap-by-lap: Mike Joy
Color-commentator: Jeff Gordon
Color commentator: Darrell Waltrip
Jamie Little
Chris Neville
Vince Welch
Matt Yocum

RadioEdit

The race was broadcast on radio by the Motor Racing Network—who has covered the Daytona 500 since 1970—and simulcast on Sirius XM NASCAR Radio. The booth crew consisted of longtime announcer Joe Moore, Jeff Striegle and 1989 Cup Series champion Rusty Wallace. Longtime turn announcer – and prodigy of MRN co-founder Ken Squier – Dave Moody was the lead turn announcer. He called the Daytona 500 from atop the Sunoco tower outside the exit of turn 2 when the field was racing through turns 1 and 2. Mike Bagley worked the backstretch for the Daytona 500 from a spotter's stand on the inside of the track. Kyle Rickey called the Daytona 500 when the field was racing through turns 3 and 4 from the Sunoco tower outside the exit of turn 4. On pit road, MRN was manned by lead pit reporter and NASCAR Hall of Fame Executive Director Winston Kelley. He was joined on pit road by Steve Post and Alex Hayden.

MRN Radio
Booth announcers Turn announcers Pit reporters
Lead announcer: Joe Moore
Announcer: Jeff Striegle
Announcer: Rusty Wallace
Turns 1 & 2: Dave Moody
Backstretch: Mike Bagley
Turns 3 & 4: Kyle Rickey
Alex Hayden
Winston Kelley
Steve Post

Standings after the raceEdit

NotesEdit

  1. ^ a b c Jimmie Johnson, Paul Menard and Ryan Blaney started from the rear of the field for switching to backup cars after their Duel races.[35]
  2. ^ a b c Martin Truex Jr., A. J. Allmendinger and Chris Buescher started from the rear of the field after failing inspection after their Duel races.[35]

ReferencesEdit

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