Jimmie Johnson hung around in the pack all afternoon at Daytona International Speedway but put himself in position to win his second NASCAR Daytona 500.
Danica Patrick led the field to green but gave it up to Jeff Gordon. Eventually Danica made it back to the front and led five laps. She is the first female driver to lead the Daytona 500. She raced up front all day but was shuffled back to eighth place, the first female to score a top 10 finish at Daytona. She was also the highest finishing rookie.
Although Jimmie Johnson won the race, the whole day was more about who didn’t finish the race. Kevin Harvick and Tony Stewart had fast cars but were wrecked in an early crash. Matt Kenseth was leading the race when his car started smoking and he was out. Kyle Busch took over the lead from Matt only to lose his engine a few laps later.
It seemed at times that the racing was good but in reality most of the race was run with the cars in a single file line at the top of the racing surface. No one was able to use the lower line. In the past the lower line, the one right next to the double yellow lines at the inside was the preferred line. Not today.
Jimmie Johnson ran around tenth place most of the day and made a charge in the last 20 laps. Jimmie was able to hold off the pack but behind him was a different story. Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Mark Martin were able to use the low line to move up to second and third place. Brad Keselowski was fourth and Ryan Newman fifth.
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