The NASCAR Series started off the July Daytona weekend by declaring that the driver who crossed the finish line didn’t actually win. That driver and his crew didn’t even have time to begin celebrating before NASCAR Race Control disqualified him and declared Kyle Larson the winner. On Saturday, Erik Jones was the last man standing after the wreck-fest that was the Coke Zero Sugar 400.
Larson Wins Through Disqualification
Kyle Larson was the dominant driver in his Chip Ganassi Racing Number 42, sweeping both stages and taking the checkered flag. The race was fairly clean, with only six caution flags throughout the two stages. There was one multicar accident late in the race, which caused NASCAR Overtime. The real excitement of the night came with a final corner four-way pass on the inside of everyone by Justin Haley for the lead. However, NASCAR Race Control only took about 30 seconds to verify that Haley had, without being forced down, crossed the double yellow line onto the apron to make the pass and his win was disallowed, giving Larson the win. Elliot Sadler reclaimed the points lead with a second place finish, and rookie Christopher Bell gained third place points.
Stenhouse Jr. Gets Security Escort After Causing “The Big One” – Twice
Not many NASCAR drivers can lay claim to being single-handedly responsible for more than half the field not finishing a race. Roush-Fenway driver Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. may in fact be the only driver who can lay claim to that title after Saturday’s Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona. The first wreck, at Lap 54, damaged 22 cars in total and took all three Penske cars out of the race.
Several laps later, Stenhouse did it again and another 11 cars were towed off the track. Only 18 cars were fit to take the checkered flag at the end of it all. Stenhouse, who won both stages in his Roush-Fenway Racing Number 17, was bitten by karma when Kyle Larson blew a tire and collected him.
When the smoke, fire and debris had all been cleared away, Erik Jones reigned triumphant in his Joe Gibbs Racing Number 20. Jones passed Truex, who finished second, on the last lap and then held him off to win by .125 seconds. AJ Allmendinger held out for a third place finish.