The Daytona 500 Review


The Daytona 500

NASCAR Race Review

The Daytona 500 is the Super Bowl of NASCAR racing. It is the first race of the season and is special. Only the top two fastest drivers are in the race after qualifying. The rest of the field is set by the running of the Gatorade Duels. The first race is led by the pole sitter, 48 Jimmy Johnson. The second is led by second place 55 Michael Waltrip. 88 Dale Earnhardt won the first race, starting him in third. 11 Denny Hamlin won the second race, starting him in fourth. 2 Kurt Busch will start the race last with a past Champion Provisional.
(1)87 is Kenny Wallace. 77 is Sam Hornish, Jr. He has 2’s points. This is 44 Dale Jarrett’s last Daytona 500 as he is retiring after the first five races and the All-Star Race later this year. 34 is John Andretti, who raced his way into the Daytona 500. 18 is now Kyle Busch in a Toyota. 66 this year is Scott Riggs. 01 is Rookie Regan Smith. The famous 28 is back with Travis Kvapil behind the wheel. 70 is now Jeremy Mayfield. 96 is now J. J. Yeley. 40 is now Rookie Dario Franchitti. Those failing to qualify and race are: 84 A.J. Allmendinger, 21 Bill Elliott, 49 Ken Schrader, 60 Boris Said, 10 Patrick Carpentier, 37 Eric McClure, 09 Sterling Marlin, 27 Rookie Jacques Villeneuve, 50 Stanton Barrett, and 08 Carl Long.
Here we go with the 50th running of the Daytona 500. 26 Jamie McMurray and 40 Franchitti are in back-up cars and will start from the rear. 78 Joe Nemechek was in the Chapel for services and couldn’t get to the Driver Meeting in time, so will also start from the rear. 55 leads the first lap. 48 takes the lead. 20 Stewart pushes 11 Hamlin into the lead. 20 takes the lead with help from 24 J. Gordon. 29 Harvick is having trouble and is falling back. 55 gets into the “sucker hole” and backs up. Thirteen cars line up nose to tail. 24 takes the lead. 11 takes the lead. 18 pushes 88 past 24. Green Flag Pitting begins with 5, 77, 78 and 34. 31 Jeff Burton overshoots his pit and has to back up. The leaders are now pitting. 78 has a tire rub and goes back in. 88 has a vibration. 18 takes the lead. 11 goes under 18 for the lead.
77 has a vibration and pits. 11 takes the lead with help from 24. 18 takes the lead during the commercial. 19 Elliott Sadler gets into the wall and pits. 5 pits to start Green Flag Pitting again. 41 Reed Sorenson leads, then pits. 48 has a long pit when the jack goes down. The first caution comes out on lap 81 for debris with 41 leading. 11 is having clutch problems. 41 and 2 don’t pit. After the Green Flag, 8 Mark Martin gets a tire going down and has to pit. 83 Brian Vickers also pits. 41 goes to the outside by himself and falls back, putting 2 in the lead. 07 Clint Bowyer gets into the wall. They are four-wide for a moment.
18 takes the lead during the commercial. 48 is all the way back in 30th place, extremely loose. 18 gets way ahead of the field. “Wonder why they’re letting him do that” DW. 2 pushes 24. 2 goes down onto the apron and grass to avoid hitting 88. 17 Matt Kenseth takes the lead. 18 takes the lead. 12 Newman gets to the outside of 18. 99 Carl Edwards, 01 Smith and 1 Martin Truex, Jr. start Green Flag pitting. 2 is too fast and must come through the pits again. 12 is leading. 18 takes the lead. 11 has damage, but is back on the track. 01 gets into the wall. 87 isn’t fast enough on the track and is out of the race.
The second caution is again for debris. I guess we needed to tighten up the field. 16 Greg Biffle is out of the pits first. 55 slides through his pit and must back up. 83 Brian Vickers is the Lucky Dog and gets his lap back. 24 goes to the garage with suspension problems. Thirty-two cars are on the lead lap.
The third caution comes out when 6 David Ragan goes up into 17, into the wall. 22 Dave Blaney is out of the pits first. 9 Kasey Kahne takes the lead. 20 takes the lead. 88 gets 20 loose and sends him up the track to take the lead. 9 gets shuffled out of the deck. The fourth caution comes out during the commercial. 48 got loose by 77 and collected 1. 20 and 18 fool 88 into staying out. 88, 07, 12, 31 and 16 stay out. 07 takes the lead.
The fifth caution comes out when 07 spins after 42 Juan Pablo Montoya turns him. We restart with twelve to go. 31 takes the lead. 42 is down the middle, falling back. The sixth caution comes out when 29 bumps 22. 22 goes up into 8. 42 and 11 are collected. 38 David Gilliland is the Lucky Dog and gets his lap back. The Green Flag comes out with eight laps to go. It is a single-file restart.
The seventh caution comes out when 5 Casey Mears tries to block 20 and gets into the wall. At the restart 31 gets stuck in the middle with no help and falls back. 20 takes the lead. 12 gets pushed by his team mate, 2 on the high side and they both get by 20 for the lead. 12 Ryan Newman races to the line to win the race.

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