McDowell wins Daytona 500
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — Michael McDowell won the rain-delayed Daytona 500 after a last-lap wreck early Monday morning.
The Daytona 500 resumed late Sunday night after a weather delay that lasted more than five hours and prompted several drivers to make fast-food runs outside the track.
Denny Hamlin won both the opening and second stages.
NASCAR’s signature event was halted after 15 laps because of lightning and then heavy rain. Sixteen cars were involved in a huge crash just one lap before the stoppage.
With radar showing a lengthy delay, at least three drivers hit the road to grab some grub.
Drivers Chase Briscoe, Ross Chastain and Tyler Reddick used the red flag to refuel, giving new meaning to fast food. The drivers left the track and made quick trips across the street to grab some grub.
Briscoe posted a picture on social media of him wearing his firesuit in the drive-thru at Panda Express. Chastain posted a pic of him in the drive-thru at McDonald’s, a sponsor. Reddick sat down inside Cheddar’s Scratch Kitchen, also a sponsor, and ate some chicken pot pie.
On Saturday night, Austin Cindric launched his bid for a second consecutive Xfinity Series title with a victory in the season opener.
“What a way to start the season,” Cindric said. “Coming off a lot of momentum winning that championship last year, but nothing is guaranteed. Try to do it again tomorrow, I guess.”
He’s the first reigning Xfinity champion to win the next year’s season-opening race since 1996 champion Randy LaJoie won the 1997 opener. The win was Cindric’s first on Daytona’s oval, and first at the famed track in NASCAR’s second-tier series for Team Penske.
Cindric won the Xfinity Series debut on Daytona’s road course last August as well as a rallycross event early in his career. Neither compares to winning on Daytona’s 2¢-mile, high-banked oval.