William Byron wins NASCAR’s Daytona 500

William Byron wins NASCAR’s Daytona 500

NASCAR’s Daytona 500: William Byron knew exactly what he wanted to do: win the 2024 Daytona 500 with the No. 24 Chevrolet to start Hendrick Motorsports’ 40th anniversary season.

Even though Byron had to finish an excruciating final lap around Daytona International Speedway under caution while waiting for the winner to be announced, the mission was achieved.

Did we come out on top? Did we prevail? Byron asked over and over on his radio.

Byon had just won the biggest race of his career, and the emotion he heard from crew chief Rudy Fugle over his radio proved it.

Well, I wasn’t informed. Additionally, I heard Rudy sobbing over the radio, so I thought, Dude, I hope he’s crying for a good reason.” Byron stated. I guess he was a bundle of emotions there, so I thought, ‘Did we win?’

Following a nine-race losing streak at the Daytona 500, Byron ended it on Monday by winning the rain-delayed “Great American Race.” Just as he crossed under the white flag signaling the end of the lap, there was an accident from behind. As he made one last lap around Daytona, the yellow flag was raised, and he wasn’t quite sure if he was the official winner.

Dale Earnhardt Jr. was the last Hendrick driver to win the Daytona 500 in 2014. On the actual 40th anniversary of his first Cup win, the 26-year-old from Charlotte, North Carolina, became the sixth different driver to win the 500 for Rick Hendrick, the most successful team owner in NASCAR history.

In victory lane, Hendrick remarked, “The first time we came here, we didn’t think we had any business even being here.” We felt completely unmatched. It is now forty years later. The script was written to the best of your ability. It is truly amazing to have won on the 40th day of the competition.

Hendrick Motorsports’ eleventh Daytona 500 victory ties the team for the most in NASCAR history with Petty Enterprises.

William Byron was a superstar before, and he really elevated his status to a whole new level, stated Jeff Gordon, vice chairman of Hendrick Motorsports and three-time Daytona 500 champion driving the No. 24 Chevrolet.

He remarked, Even though I wasn’t driving the car, I felt like I was making every lap out there with him. We will have a celebration. This is a major victory.

Byron, a self-taught racer who employed computer equipment to sharpen his skills, has never finished higher than 21st in the Daytona 500. After winning a career-high six races the previous season, Byron advanced to the championship round but was defeated by Ryan Blaney.

“I can’t believe I’m just a kid from racing on computers and winning the Daytona 500,” Byron exclaimed. My dad should be here, I know he’s sick, but dude, this is for him. We watched the race together from the grandstands, and we’ve been through a lot together.

After Hendrick driver Alex Bowman bumped Byron from behind, Byron sideswiped Brad Keselowski, resulting in the fourth and final yellow of the race. This incident involved 23 cars and resulted in a more than 15-minute red flag.

On the last restart, four laps remained, and Byron was running in second place in the No. 24 Chevrolet. After a back-and-forth battle between him and Trackhouse Racing’s Ross Chastain for the lead, Byron emerged victorious when a crash occurred behind him during the last lap’s white flag.

Teammate Bowman trailed Byron in a 1-2 sweep for Hendrick and Chevrolet. Third-place Chevys from Corey Lajoie of Spire Motorsports and AJ Allmendinger of Kaulig Racing were followed by Christopher Bell in a Toyota for Joe Gibbs Racing.

John Hunter Nemecheck of Legacy Motor Club followed Bubba Wallace in sixth place in a Toyota driven by 23XI Racing. Chase Briscoe, driving for Stewart-Haas Racing, finished eighth in a Ford. Erik Jones, a driver for Legacy, and Noah Gragson, a teammate from SHR, followed.

Due to the continuous rain throughout the weekend at Daytona, the race was held one day later than planned. Due to persistent rain on Monday morning, NASCAR decided to reschedule the Xfinity Series race, which was originally slated to take place first on Monday before moving on to the 500.

At the pre-race driver meeting, when he arrived 30 minutes early and dressed in a black tank top, Johnson was greeted with an enormous cheer from the crowd on the starting grid, in the fan zone, and at the pre-race driver meeting.

Throughout the first 75 hours of the series, NASCAR has been very flexible this month in adjusting its schedule to avoid bad weather. Due to expected rain, NASCAR pushed back the exhibition Clash at the Coliseum by one full day at the beginning of the month. It moved the ARCA Series event from Saturday to Friday night at Daytona and decided early on to shift the Cup Series and Xfinity Series races as well.

Early on Sunday morning, it was decided to postpone the Cup race by one day, saving spectators from having to wait in sodden grandstands to find out when the race would start.

A few hours later, teams told The Associated Press that they had retained one of the best antitrust and sports attorneys in the nation to counsel them in their ongoing battle with NASCAR regarding a new revenue-sharing arrangement. The teams had taken advantage of Sunday’s rain delay.

The majority owner of each chartered team met at Daytona before the decision was made to hire Jeffrey Kessler, partner and co-executive chair of Winston & Strawn LLP. Despite the teams’ invitations, no NASCAR representatives showed there.

The five members of the team ownership negotiating committee disclosed Kessler’s employment to AP. The 36 chartered teams declined last month to extend their exclusive negotiating window with the governing body on the current arrangement due to a breakdown in negotiations between the teams and NASCAR.

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