56TH ANNUAL DAYTONA "500"
DAYTONA INTERNATIONAL SPEEDWAY
Daytona Beach, FL - February 23, 2014
2.5-Mile Oval; 200 Laps - 500 Miles Purse: $19,784,864
Race Comments: Dale Earnhardt Jr. won the 56th running of the Daytona 500, his 20th NASCAR Sprint Cup Series victory. Prior to the green flag to start the event, the following cars dropped to the rear of the field for the reason indicated: #10, 14, 52 (Unapproved Engine Change), #48, 78, 15, 1, 66, 34 (Back-Up Car).
Fans had to endure a long day of racing, both at the track and on the couch, but we endured. Fans at the track had a more exciting time as they were asked to evacuate the stands as weather warnings were issued for the red flag. I saw pics online where someone snapped a pic of a funnel a few miles beyond the far side of track. One person tweeted that they were instructed to get in their cars and put their seat belts on. Zoinks.
Beyond the storm, we had a different kind of development on the track. Martin Truex in his first 2014 season points race on his new team went out early, then other name-drivers started getting caught up in situations.
When Danica went out, well, Richard was probably muttering something to himself about other drivers on the track. Then Tony Stewart went out, and I was starting to worry about the other drivers.
We had a few "exciting" accidents there were replayed liberally by Fox, but in the end, Jr Nation was finally vindicated as Dale Earnhardt Jr. won his second Daytona 500.
You realize that he now stepped out from under his father's shadow by winning his second 500?
And those final laps were nerve racking. Even though ever since the Gen-6 car came along and Cup plate races have had very little race-ending drama. But this one, with that last lap restart, had more drama than the last few races.
That being said, conspiracy theorists be damned, check out some official stats and details from the 2014 Daytona 500:
- - -
|1||Dale Earnhardt Jr||200||Running||6||54|
|7||Ricky Stenhouse Jr||200||Running|
|9||Austin Dillon #||200||Running||1||1|
|23||Alex Bowman #||198||Running|
|27||Justin Allgaier #||193||Accident||3||4|
|28||Cole Whitt #||193||Accident|
|29||Parker Kligerman #||193||Accident|
|37||Michael Annett #||161||Accident|
|38||Kyle Larson #||160||Accident|
|43||Martin Truex Jr||30||Engine|