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Daytona Beach, Fla.
Note: Live updates on this story are complete. You can read the full race results and takeaways here.
NASCAR’s Daytona 500 is today at 2:30 p.m. on FOX. The green flag is scheduled for 3:06 p.m.
The race is 200 laps (500 miles) with stages ending on laps 65, 130 and 200.
Today’s race is sold out and features for the first time in history four teams with Black owners that have cars in the field, including Michael Jordan’s 23XI Racing and Floyd Mayweather’s Money Team. In addition, musical artist Pitbull is the only Hispanic owner.
There will be seven racially and ethnically diverse individuals with a vested interest in a NASCAR team running in the Daytona 500, which is a shift in the industry’s ownership complexion that just two years ago was almost entirely white.
“It’s significant,” said Brad Daugherty, a former NBA player who’s been involved with his JTG Daugherty Racing team for more than a decade. “I’m proud to be a part of this small group that I hope continues to grow and become larger as we go forward, not only with African Americans, but with women. I would love to see more women have opportunities to be owners and be part of this collective effort to climb into the 21st century.”
The Observer’s Alex Andrejev is at the track covering the race. Live updates and lap-by-lap highlights from Daytona International Speedway are below. Refresh this page for the latest. All times are Eastern.
Daytona 500 final results
|Pos.||Driver||Time behind||Best time||Best speed|
|1||Austin Cindric #||—||46.102||195.219|
|13||Martin Truex Jr.||0.604||46.059||195.402|
|22||* Jacques Villeneuve||-3||46.344||194.2|
|26||* Kaz Grala(i)||-5||46.545||193.361|
|28||Ricky Stenhouse Jr.||-7||46.148||195.025|
|31||* Noah Gragson(i)||-11||46.155||194.995|
|33||Todd Gilliland #||-11||46.157||194.987|
|36||* Greg Biffle(i)||-65||46.556||193.316|
|38||William Byron Jr.||-139||46.508||193.515|
|39||Harrison Burton #||-139||46.28||194.468|
# – Rookie
I – Not eligible for points
* – Qualified on time
Checkered flag: Rookie Austin Cindric wins the race. Full results will be posted here shortly.
6:36 p.m., Lap 196: Ricky Stenhouse Jr. led with eight laps to go but shortly after the restart from the red flag, he got loose side drafted Bubba Wallace and crashed into the wall. Brad Keselowski was pushing Stenhouse when he lost control
6:20 p.m., Lap 190: The red flag comes out with nine laps to go after a multi-car wreck set off by Kyle Larson and Kevin Harvick. Larson had a big run on Harvick and they don’t align quite, and chaos ensues as Harvick goes spinning. Kyle Busch and Bubba Wallace slip by, but others aren’t so lucky. Chase Elliott, Todd Gilliland, Erik Jones and Noah Gragson are involved in that wreck.
6:15 p.m., Lap 185: Bubba Wallace drops back to 17th as the inside lane splits up. Rickey Stenhouse Jr. , Chris Buescher, Kyle Larson, Todd Gilliland, Kevin Harvick, Erik Jones, Kyle Busch, Austin Cindric, Ryan Blaney and Brad Keselowski is the new order.
6:08 p.m., Lap 175: Bubba Wallace is leading the pack with Kyle Busch behind him. Austin Cindric and Ryan Blaney follow in the low lane behind then, and Chris Buescher gives a big push to Ricky Stenhouse to lead the outside lane.
Lap 150: Fifth caution of the day came out with 50 laps to go. Tyler Reddick got loose around Turn 4, spun and went into the wall, taking with him Martin Truex Jr., Kurt Busch and Joey Logano.
Reddick is out of the race. Truex, who won the first two stages, is now 20th — the last driver on the lead lap.
Lap 146: Brad Keselowski is back out in front and right behind him is Austin Cindric in the same No. 2 Ford that Keselowski drove last season for Team Penske.
5:18 p.m., Lap 130: Martin Truex Jr. wins sweeps the first two stages of the Daytona 500. He was frustrated with where his car was running, and perhaps the team’s pit strategy earlier, but is able to work with Toyota teammate Bubba Wallace to move ahead of the Fords before the stage end and barely get by Joey Logano. The stage finishing order is Truex, Logano, Brad Keselowski, Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Austin Cindric, Chris Buescher, Kevin Harvick, Kyle Larson and Todd Gilliland. Chase Elliott and Joey Logano make long pit stops.
5:08 p.m., Lap 126: RFK Racing leads with Brad Keselowski out front and Chris Buescher behind, but Kyle Larson makes a big move, tries to get around Keselowski and he does briefly, but doesn’t have any help. Keselowski drops down, and others follow, to re-take the lead. Joey Logano is up to second.
4:56 p.m., Lap 108: Almost everyone pits, but Martin Truex Jr. stays out for another lap and makes a quick stop for fuel. “That didn’t work at all! Why didn’t we get tires like they did?” the No. 19 radio says after. Chase Elliott stalls on pit road and Chase Briscoe misses him pit box. He’s running in 17th. Daniel Suárez gets a speeding penalty. The anxiety is rising for many teams. Cole Custer’s team didn’t get fuel in turning that stop and tell him to watch his gauges.
4:52 p.m., Lap 103: Green flag pit stops are underway, with multiple Chevy’s coming in, including Daniel Hemric, Austin Dillon and Corey LaJoie, among others. The field is racing single file, and it’s too early to make any aggressive moves. “We’re gonna stick with what we know,” Martin Truex Jr.’s team says.
4:45 p.m., Lap 97: Besides Burton, the two other rookies in the series are running in the top-10, with Penske driver Austin Cindric running in second and Front Row Motorsports.
4:36 p.m., Lap 82: Fords are leading a long line of about a dozen cars on the bottom line. Ryan Blaney, Austin Cindric, Chris Buescher, Kevin Harvick and Brad Keselowski are leading. “How’s your balance?” Ryan Blaney is asked. “No issue, all good,” he responds.
4:27 p.m., Lap 71: Ryan Blaney is out front after the restart getting a push from Austin Cindric. Denny Hamlin is out of his car, marking his first DNF in this race.
“Too aggressive pushing there when they weren’t lined up and in control,” Hamlin says, referring to Brad Keselowski’s shoving of rookie Harrison Burton while up front.
William Byron and Harrison Burton have also been evaluated and released from the care center. Christopher Bell has gone to the garage with a broken rear suspension.
4:21 p.m., Lap 68: The first stage ends under caution with Martin Truex Jr. in the lead. Brad Keselowski, Tood Gilliland, Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Joey Logano, Austin Dillon, Kurt Busch, Erik Jones, Chase Elliott and Kyle Larson follow for the stage 1 finishing order.
4:17 p.m., Lap 62: Harrison Burton loses control of his car with a big push by Brad Keselowski out front, causing a massive accident. Burton’s car goes spinning down the track, and flips, collecting multiple cars. Those involved are Kurt Busch, Denny Hamlin, Kyle Busch, Christopher Bell, William Byron and Alex Bowman. It appears that this will take Denny Hamlin, a three-time Daytona 500 winner, out of the race.
“Nothing I could really do,” William Byron said, explaining that he saw the top lane get squirrely, then Burton’s car get loose, and couldn’t do much to prevent his wreck. “Sucks that I was along for the ride.”
4:05 p.m., Lap 57: William Byron lines up on the outside lane after the restart and then moves down in front of Kyle Busch on the inside, as Harrison Burton leads the outside lane.
3:54 p.m., Lap 51: Ryan Blaney went three-wide and makes contact with Kyle Larson on the side, nearly wrecking, but neither spins. Then a caution comes out for another missing wheel. This time, it came from Justin Haley’s right front. Haley pits and reports that he’s got no breaks either. Not an ideal start for Kaulig Racing.
3:50 p.m., Lap 45: Kyle Busch leads the inside lane while Joey Logano leads the outside lane for the restart. Denny Hamlin is right behind Busch running tight on his tail. The inside lane is picking up speed, and is getting a big run.
3:35p.m., Lap 40: The caution is out after a busy pit road sequence. The Fords line pits, followed by the Toyotas, and then the others. After pitting, Kaz Grala’s car loses a tire in Turn 2 and the cars behind the debris lift. As that happens, Austin Cindric gets into the back of Chase Briscoe, sending him spinning. Then comes the caution…
3:27 p.m., Lap 25: Fords have dominated the early portion of this race, but the Toyota line led by Kyle Busch is picking up speed. By lap 27, Kyle Busch moves to the front, although the outside lane hasn’t abandoned their efforts. It’s close. Busch and Keselowski are side-by-side, with Busch having a slight advantage.
3:20 p.m., Lap 15: Brad Keselowski continues to run out front followed by a fleet of Fords. They’re tracking Ryan Blaney, in that lane further back behind Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Erik Jones, Kyle Larson and Alex Bowman. The Toyotas are still rolling in that inside lane, but they’re six car lengths back.
3:14 p.m., Lap 8: The Fords lead the outside lane and the Toyotas have organized into the lower lane, led by Kyle Busch, Christopher Bell, Martin Truex Jr., Kurt Busch and Bubba Wallace. Further back, Daniel Hemric, who earlier had to start at the back due to multiple inspection failures, has been lapped.
3:11 p.m., Lap 4: The Daytona 500 is underway, and pole-sitter Kyle Larson quickly loses the advantage as the outside lane led by Brad Keselowski surges to the front of the field. A single lane forms before breaking up again. Keselowski and Austin Cindric are out front.
2:59 p.m.: Engines are FIRED for 200 laps with NFL great Charles Woodson delivering the command for, “Drivers, start your engines.” They’re strapped in and ready to go. Trace Adkins performed the national anthem in front of a big crowd. The flyover is complete and NASCAR is ready to commence its Next Gen era. Lachlan Murdoch, the CEO of FOX Corporation, will wave the green flag as the honorary starter.
Multiple cars dropping to the rear for race start
Four teams will drop to the rear for today’s Daytona 500, with two teams dropping to the back for multiple inspection failures. Cars driven by Daniel Hemric and Chase Briscoe failed pre-race inspection multiple times. They will drop to the rear and lose a crew member.
Hemric, driver of the No. 16 Chevrolet for Kaulig Racing, will serve a pass-through for his team failing tech three times, and his team’s car chief JD Frey will be ejected. For Briscoe’s No. 14 Ford team, engineer George Spencer will be ejected.
In addition to those drivers, No. 22 driver Joey Logano and No. 27 driver Jacques Villeneuve will drop to the rear for the race start, Logano for going to a backup car and Villeneuve for an engine change.
Briscoe was slated to start ninth, Logano was slated to start 20th, Hemric was slated to start 33rd and Villeneuve was slated to start 40th.
NASCAR’s pre-race ceremonies will kick off this afternoon ahead of the 64th running of the Daytona 500. Coverage will be on FOX, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio. The race is 200 laps (500 miles) with stages ending on laps 65, 130 and 200.
Charles Woodson, a Pro Football Hall of Fame cornerback and Super Bowl Champion, is the grand marshal for this year’s race. Country music singer Trace Adkins will perform the national anthem.
Speaking with media ahead of his dignitary duties, Woodson was asked about the influx of Black NASCAR team ownership and whether he would consider getting involved. “Don’t threaten me with a good time,” Woodson said, adding that he, “Wouldn’t mind exploring it.”
Invocation: 2:46 p.m.
National Anthem: 2:47 p.m.
Command: 2:54 p.m.
Green Flag: 3:06 p.m.
Packed house at Daytona
Prior to the 500, Daytona International Speedway announced that it sold out tickets for the race, a major shift from the reduced capacity protocols implemented last year due to the pandemic, when the track hosted around 30,000 fans. The speedway seats 101,000 in its grandstands, and there could be up to 150,000 fans on site throughout the day, Sports Business Journal previously reported. The track said that it hosted five consecutive sell-outs before last season when capacity was reduced.
“The energy just feels right,” said Steward-Haas Racing driver Aric Almirola hours before the race.
Almirola is retiring from full-time racing at the end of this season to spend more time with his family. Although he said that he’s open to making future NASCAR race appearances, he reiterated that his focus is on his family.
Elliott lands HMS contract extension
Hours before the Daytona 500, one of NASCAR’s biggest teams and its biggest stars announced that they would stay linked for the long term. Hendrick Motorsports announced that Chase Elliott signed a five-year contract extension to remain with the team through the 2027 season.
“I feel so fortunate to be in this position,” Elliott said in a statement. “I have a great team with leadership from (crew chief) Alan (Gustafson) and the support of the best car owner and racing organization in the world.”
Daytona 500 starting lineup
|14||19||Martin Truex Jr.|
|18||17||Ricky Stenhouse Jr.|
This story was originally published February 20, 2022 1:10 PM.