After the second GWC restart and two frantic laps, Jamie McMurray found himself in victory lane. In a race that was anything but predictable, the No. 1 car was in P1. I have to say, after always being in the middle on my opinions on McMurray, I like the guy. It was so nice to see someone express that much joy after a victory.
His abilities outside of Daytona and Talladega are debatable, but when the plate is on the car, boy can the kid drive a car. I thought Jr. had him after passing 8 cars in about a lap, high and low, but the run he had died once he reached the bumped of the 1 car. RCR and MWR also looked very strong while, on the other hand, outside of Jr.?s last two laps HMS looked mediocre and JGR looked weaker than in the past.
Some notes of interest:
? Heartbreak of the day: AJ Allmendinger- That car was hooked up; towards the end of a fuel run he could pick off cars one by one with no help from behind. I really hope to see the 43 run like that more this year and not just on the RP tracks.
? Red Flags and not for rain and wrecks: The pothole in Turn 2 really broke up the race but I am glad that NASCAR got it fixed to have a great finish for the fans. I do ask Daytona to fix the problem and not just pave the whole thing. Let the boys have to work the cars and add some skill to getting through traffic beyond just the strength of the engine.
? Disappointment of the day: Stewart-Haas Racing- They never really seemed to compete at all the race, though I cannot see that being an every race occurrence.
? Tough break of the race: As much as I do not like Joe Nemechek I do feel bad for him for what happened on Sunday. An underfunded team with the intentions of running the whole race gets the air taken off the rear end by a car 40 laps down and crashes. Though Hornish never hit him, there is no need for the 77 to be getting that close to a car in the corner.
6 races, 5 wins, 4 car #?s, 3 owners. That is Tony Stewart?s history in Nationwide for the February Daytona race over the past 6 years. Once that car got the front and the pack got to single-file there was little doubt in my mind that the 4 car wouldn?t be in victory lane.
Danica-mania is on a 5 day break before she gets back on the track on Friday out in Fontana. I think her problem is that she is too conservative out there and is afraid of making a mistake. That is how you learn though so she needs to push the envelope. Not once on Saturday did I see her put her car into real danger. The accident could have been avoided if she would have gone lower but it is Daytona so you cannot blame her too much for what happened.
Glad to see Junior walk away from a very scary wreck in which Edwards and Keslowski came together on the backstretch, another incident where you cannot clearly blame just one driver for. Kudos goes out to Allgaier for hanging with the big boys out there with a lot more plate experience.
A wreck-fest took place on Saturday night that left Timothy Peters in victory lane after one of the most impressive passes I have seen in recent history. The trucks series really need to align their bumpers better because the bump draft resulted in 3 backstretch crashes.
I feel bad for Austin Dillon who got himself in a situation that you cannot really practice for that cost him and several other competitors? shots at victory. What was Kyle Busch thinking by the way trying to get through the field while 20 laps down? The worst part about it was when he bumped Dennis Setzer who made one heck of a save while leading. Donnie Neuenberger made a head-ups move to avoid disaster by hitting pit road at 170 MPH and came home in 9th. Other shout outs go to Dennis Setzer, Johnny Benson, Jason White, and Stacy Compton for their top 10 finishes.
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