For Daytona and NASCAR fans, this was the weekend that wouldn’t end! The Daytona 500 was primed and ready to race in the primetime Monday Night slot and very early Tuesday morning, Matt Kenseth celebrated in victory lane after winning the Daytona 500.
Kenseth, who last won the Daytona 500 in 2009 because of rain, held off both Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Greg Biffle in the closing laps, to end one of the craziest races in NASCAR history.
As the race was originally postponed and scheduled to run Monday morning, NASCAR made the decision to run the race under the lights later that day. Creating a buzz that will forever remind us of the 2012 edition of the Great American Race.
Fans endured both rain and fire during the 500-mile race. Yes, fire. A fiery, burning inferno ignited when Juan Pablo Montoya hit a safety truck during a caution, which ended up causing a two-hour delay.
Many were concerned on whether or not we would see any racing after that, since the fire seemed to destroy the entire racing surface. Who was leading during that delay? Dave Blaney, which seems only fitting as both John King and James Buescher celebrated victories over the weekend in Daytona. But just like the fans, the drivers who were still racing for the win, had some ‘fun’ while the red flag was still being displayed.
Brad Keselowski took advantage of this opportunity, as he not only tweeted a picture of the fire erupting, but also engaged with both fans and media of NASCAR. Keselowski even held a ‘mini’-Tweetup with several of the drivers standing around (including Landon Cassill, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Clint Bowyer and Joey Logano). How did this prove to be beneficial for the driver of the Miller Lite Dodge? Keselowski gained nearly 100 thousand followers during the 125-minute delay.
NASCAR was able to clean up all damage left behind from the jet dryer, which was holding nearly 200 gallons of jet kerosene. This prompted a 34-lap shootout, which was plagued by additional accidents. With only 22 laps left in the Great American Race, both Marcos Ambrose and Casey Mears spun, which in return set up an 18-lap race after the restart.vJust six laps later, NASCAR experienced yet another ‘big one’ – which has become a coined phrase at restrictor-plate tracks. Some of the drivers involved: Jamie McMurray, Aric Almirola, Kasey Kahne, Carl Edwards and Keselowski.
Earlier in the race, however, five-time Sprint Cup Series Champion Jimmie Johnson experienced his worst career finish in the race. He wrecked on the second lap, long before his car was able to reach full speed. Johnson finished 42nd, in the 500, which is his worst finish in 53 starts at the infamous track. But here’s the real kicker – since winning the Daytona 500 in 2006, Johnson has finished 39th, 27th, 31st, 35th, 27th and 42nd in the race.
‘‘I’m just really, really bummed to start the season this way,’’ Johnson said. ‘‘For all the hard work that has gone into getting ready for tonight, we didn’t get to complete 21/2 miles of green-flag racing.’’ In Johnson’s defense, he had very little control over his early exit in the famed race. As Elliott Sadler nudged Johnson from behind, the 48 machine turned into the wall collecting several others. David Ragan slammed hard into Johnson’s spinning car.
Those who were plagued by the second lap incident: Danica Patrick, Kurt Busch and defending Daytona 500 champ, Trevor Bayne. ‘‘It is disappointing,’’ said Ragan, who finished 43rd in the 43-car field. ‘‘It is ridiculous to sit around this long for the Daytona 500 and on the very first lap for someone to be driving as reckless as whoever caused that. I can’t wait to see who was the bonehead that did that.’’
Kyle Busch Wins Second NASCAR Cup Title
Kylke Busch, who is arguably the most polarizing driver in NASCAR, won his second Cup title on Sunday and took the opportunity to celebrate the victory with fans, a big change from his first win back in 2015 when Busch ruined the massive championship banner by doing smoke-filled burnouts.
“It messed up the flag and everything, and I wanted to get a good shot with the flag everywhere, make sure everybody could get a good shot of the flag because we’re the 2019 champions,” Busch said (h/t ESPN/Associated Press). “There are always your doubters. There are always your haters. You know what? This one’s for ‘Rowdy Nation’ because you guys are the best. Thank you so much.”
Busch won the season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway to snap a 21-race losing streak, doing so as teammates Denny Hamlin and Martin Truex Jr. were slowed by pit-road issues.
Busch joined seven-time champion Jimmie Johnson as the only active drivers with multiple titles.
“You’ve got to be perfect. One mistake probably cost us the championship,” Truex said. “I’ve never had that happen. I don’t even know what to say. It doesn’t drive good with the left front on the right front, though, I can tell you that. It’s very tight.”
“I feel like I did all I could. I don’t feel I could have done a better job. I didn’t leave anything out there,” Hamlin said. “I was thinking we got a chance, and it just didn’t work out. We got a little aggressive there, and it cost us.”
“Everybody always says you never give up. We’re no different. We just do what we can do each and every week,” Busch said. “Sometimes we may not be the best. Sometimes we may not have the right track position. We had a really good car, and I could race around and move around. That’s what’s so special about Homestead Miami Speedway is the ability to put on a show.
“I felt like we did that there racing those guys. I know it kind of dulled out toward the end. It was exciting enough from my seat. It was a lot of fun to cap off such an amazing year.”
When it comes to playing at a championship level, it takes a team effort, and just as it is for Kyle Busch, it’s the same for esports teams, gamers, streamers, and even cosplayers as well. When you’re competing with the best Twitch channels, or striving to be along side the best Mixer channels, then you need to put in a championship effort.
When you’re looking to be ranked among the best female streamers, or looking to get your cosplay ranked in the best cosplay directory, then Gamactica can help! Whether you’re looking for streaming equipment or to network, the community has it all.
Tony Stewart Punches Heckler During Race Track Fight
NASCAR superstar Tony Stewart, a three-time NASCAR Cup Series champion, got into a fight with a heckler at a Jackson, Minnesota racetrack on Friday night, which saw the 48-year old driver punch a heckler in the face.
Stewart, who was the center of attention as that Jackson Motorplex put on “Tony Stewart Night”, was driving in a spring car race when his engine apparently blew out after only one lap.
Following the race, Stewart was signing autographs for fans when a heckler approached Stewart and, according to eye witnesses, began cussing Stewart out for “quitting” only one lap into the race.
Stewart responded to the colorful tirade, which included calling Stewart a “piece of sh#t”, but saying that; “I blew out my engine, you f#cking asshole. Do you want to pay for it?”
The exchange continued and escalated further when Stewart hauled off and punched the heckler in the face, with it all caught on video, courtesy of TMZ Sports.
Grading 2018′s New Driver/ Team Pairings – Alex Bowman/ Hendrick Motorsports
Undeniably the apple of an entire nation’s eye for over two decades, Dale Earnhardt Jr poignantly announced in the spring of 2017 he would step away from driving in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series at the end of the 2017 season.
Once the initial shock value wore off, reality set in. Who could possibly fill the shoes of the sport’s most popular driver? Dale Jr’s lasting impression on legions of fans young and old is unparalleled. Ultimately the conundrum of the century would centre around who might fill the gargantuan shoes little E would leave behind.
Dale Jr’s departure from Hendrick Motorsports left one the sport’s most coveted rides up for grabs. Immediately the rumour mill was set ablaze with potential candidates loyal Dale Jr supporters fancied. Following three months of intense speculation, Rick Hendrick would reveal Dale Jr’s replacement in late July 2017.
Next man up for the #88 team a tall lanky fella from Tucson Arizona. Chances are y’all probably remember him as the kid that subbed for Dale Jr while he recovered from concussion-like symptoms that kept him from the seat of the Nationwide Chevrolet in the fall of 2016.
Certainly no stranger to the Monster Energy Cup Series (Made 81 Career starts from 2014-2016), Alex Bowman makes his triumphed return as a full time driver on the circuit for the first time in nearly two years. Driving the #88 car for Hendrick Motorsports axiomatically elevates Bowman from enchanting underdog to proverbial impact player. No longer a low man on the totem pole expeditious results at HMS would give credence to an emerging young star hoping for a rebirth following past failures with BK Racing & Tommy Baldwin Racing.
Thrust into a precarious position at the age of 21, Alex Bowman exhibited incredible poise in the face of adversity. Visibly Alex was not equipped for the competitive environment that cup racing bestowed upon him back in 2014. One quality season (2013 – 2 top 5’s, 6 top 10’s 2 poles, 11th in the driver standings) in the Xfinity Series cannot enumerate impending success on the other side.
Instead of licking his wounds Bowman bided his time wisely eventually earning the opportunity to sub for Dale Jr in the fall of 2016. What could have easily morphed into catastrophic gaffe #3 for Bowman positively altered his career saving him from infinite anonymity.
In the 10 races (2016) Alex piloted the #88 car he made quite an accounting for himself (3 top 10’s, 1 pole) earning the respect and confidence of both Mr. Hendrick and Dale Jr.
The simple formula for success in 2018 relies squarely on the shoulders of Alexander Bowman.
Bowman’s familiarity with crew chief Greg Ives and the entire #88 team perpetuates some of the chemistry established back in 2016. A contingent of smart fans out there including myself firmly believe Alex Bowman was on his way to capturing the checked flag at his home track(Phoenix) in November of 2016. On this day Bowman dazzled, starting the race from the pole ultimately leading 194 laps on his way to a career best 6th place finish.
Even though the former self-proclaimed bad luck Bowman left the desert without the checked flag, indisputably he walked away a winner. Bowman’s courageous showing converted the cynics into believers. Without this fine performance in the bag Bowman could have found himself easily lost in the shuffle never to be heard from again.
Perseverance spearheaded the rise of Bowman mania. The whimsical wave of momentum Bowman’s been on since that race at Phoenix spilled over into 2017. Bowman turned heads in February finishing third in the Clash at Daytona, once again piloting the #88 Nationwide Chevrolet. He would also capture his first career Xfinity Series victory at Charlotte in the fall of 2017 driving for Chip Ganassi.
Perceptibly this young buck is completely equipped for the fate that awaits him once the green flag drops on the 2018 Monster Energy Cup Series at Daytona in February.
Rick Hendrick has all the confidence in the world in Bowman’s capabilities. Mr. H could have taken the high road and hired an established veteran driver, instead trusting Bowman’s youthful exuberance lets the entire racing world know he’s committed for the long haul.
Alex Bowman has the credentials to resuscitate Rick Hendrick’s anaemic #88 team from the ashes. Fresh blood can unite an entire nation of fans that are starving for a breath of fresh air.
Don’t Be Dale Jr, Be Alex Bowman. That’s paramount.
Alex Bowman has an entire nation on his side. So watcha gonna do when Bowmanmania runs wild on you?
Final grade – B
Photo courtesy of Autoweek
- NFLPA Partners with Twitch and Epic Games for Twitch Rivals Streamer Bowl Series
- Steelers’ Juju Smith-Schuster Received $100K to Watch NFL on Twitch
- Jets’ Le’Veon Bell Discusses Bowling Trip Distraction
- Yankees Get their Ace, Sign Gerrit Cole to 9-Year, $324 Million Deal
- Clippers’ Paul George Booed by Pacers Fans
- NHL8 years ago
SportsRantz All-Star Snubs Roster
- MLB2 years ago
Pablo Sandoval Is Reportedly Reuniting With The San Francisco Giants
- MMA2 years ago
Carl Booth ready to be crowned Brave CF’s first welterweight champion, warns Fakhreddine: ‘Be careful what you ask for’
- MLB3 years ago
Mets Make The Smart Decision To Commit To Yoenis Cespedes Long-Term
- Uncategorized1 year ago
WWE Announcer Charly Caruso Signs With ESPN
- NFL3 years ago
Cameron Brate: The League’s Hot New Fantasy Tight End
- NHL3 years ago
Have a deep talk with the young prospects about drugs
- NHL3 years ago
A lot of hockey teams training wrong?