Penske Racing

NASCAR Cup Series Race Report - Daytona

February 18, 2020

Track: Daytona International Speeday
Race: Daytona 500
Date: Februaru 17, 2020
 

No. 2 Discount Tire Ford Mustang – Brad Keselowski
Start: 9th
Stage 1: 11th
Stage 2: 13th
Finish: 36th
Status: Accident
Laps Completed: 183/209
Laps Led: 30
Driver Point Standings (behind first): 30th (-42)

Notes: 

  • Brad Keselowski was dicing for positions at the front of the lead draft in Monday evening’s Daytona 500 when he and Aric Almirola made contact, triggering a pileup that collected 19 cars. Keselowski was credited with a 36th-place finish in the final rundown and is 30th in the NASCAR Cup Series driver standings.
  • A heavy rain after just 20 laps forced the race to be postponed until Monday afternoon, with Keselowski sixth in the running order. When the race resumed, he pitted for fuel on lap 23 and took the lead on lap 25 when the leaders ahead of him pitted for a splash of fuel before the race went green. Keselowski led eight of the next 10 laps before conserving fuel in an effort to make it to the end of Stage 1. The driver of the Discount Tire Ford was 15th when the second caution of the race was displayed on lap 60. Keselowski pitted one lap later for four tires and fuel and gained three positions over the final two green flag laps to finish 11th when the segment ended on lap 65. He pitted for fuel only on lap 67 and restarted eighth when the race went green on lap 71.
  • In Stage 2, Keselowski struggled to get back to the front of the pack. He briefly ran inside the top-five but was shuffled back to the ninth position in the draft when the fourth caution slowed the pace on lap 91. Keselowski pitted for right-side tires on lap 92 and restarted eighth on lap 95. He hovered around 10th-place for the next 33 laps before being shuffled back to 13th in the running order when the stage ended on lap 130. Crew chief Jeremy Bullins called for four tires and a right-side wedge adjustment when Keselowski pitted under caution on lap 132. Solid pit work by the No. 2 team moved Keselowski up to ninth when the race went green on lap 135.
  • The driver of the No. 2 Ford Mustang was shuffled back to 14th by lap 140 but from there he rallied to the front. He grabbed the lead on lap 149 and led the next 15 laps. Keselowski was running second when made a scheduled green flag pit stop for right-side tires on lap 170 and was third in the running order when the pit cycle was complete on lap 175.
  • Keselowski took the lead from Kyle Busch on lap 181 and was running to the outside of Christopher Bell in a battle for second position, just in front of Almirola at the front of the lead pack when his night ended.

Quote: "It was just one of those racing deals. We had a really good Discount Tire Ford. My team did an incredible job today to put ourselves in position to lead a lot of laps and run up front. Unfortunately, it didn’t come together there at the end. Obviously our thoughts are with Ryan Newman this evening as well."

 
No. 12 Menards / Peak Ford Mustang – Ryan Blaney
Start: 27th
Stage 1: 6th
Stage 2: 8th
Finish: 2nd
Status: Running
Laps Completed: 209/209
Laps Led: 4
Point Standings (behind first): 2nd (-7)

Notes:

  • Ryan Blaney narrowly missed out on winning the 62nd annual Daytona 500 Monday night at Daytona International Speedway. Blaney, who started at the rear of the field after going to a backup car ran inside the top-10 most of the day and avoided significant damage in multiple accidents. In NASCAR overtime Blaney was barely nipped at the line by Denny Hamlin in a margin of victory of .014 seconds.
  • Following a delay in the start of the race, the field continued to run single file until the caution flag was displayed on lap 20 due to rain which forced a continuation to Monday afternoon. Blaney drove his way up from 40th to 29th and reported to crew chief Todd Gordon, the balance of his Menards/Peak Ford Mustang was a little tight.
  • When racing resumed, Blaney brought his Menards Ford to pit road for four tires, fuel and an air pressure adjustment on lap 22. Restarting just outside the top-10, Blaney would begin to power his way to sixth by lap 30 with help from fellow Ford Performance teammates Chris Buescher and Matt DiBenedetto along with Penske teammates Brad Keselowski and Joey Logano.
  • The forward momentum along with the handling of Blaney’s Ford Mustang would begin to fade later in the run as the Menards/Peak Ford would fall back to 12th by lap 45. A caution on lap 60, five laps before the conclusion of stage 1 would see the High Point, NC native remain on the track for the conclusion of the stage. When racing resumed on lap 63, Blaney would continue to work with Logano and Keselowski as he would finish stage 1 in the sixth position. Blaney would pit under the stage break on lap 67 for four tires, fuel and another air pressure adjustment.
  • As stage 2 began, the Penske trio would continue their charge back to the front by working the bottom lane around the 2.5-mile superspeedway. Their line of cars would steadily make progress only for it to be slowed shortly after. The caution would waive again on lap 91 and Blaney would pit two laps later for two right tires and fuel. He would eventually find his way around his Penske teammates and lead the top lane of cars with help from Buescher. Try as he might Blaney was able to advance his way to eighth position by the time stage 2 ended on lap 130. He would return to pit road under the stage caution on lap 132 for four tires, fuel and a more significant air pressure adjustment. Strong service by the Menards crew gained Blaney five spots on pit road and a second-place starting position on the restart.
  • The final stage of the day began on lap 135 and utilizing a strong push from Logano, Blaney would take to the lead on lap 136 only to give it back one lap later. He would get it get back again on lap 138, where he would lead the next three circuits. Blaney would eventually fall back to third only to be shuffled back to 20th by lap 160.
  • Blaney would make his only green flag pit stop of the day on lap 170, where he took four tires and fuel. Once returning to the track, he would begin to draft with a large group of cars led by Chevrolets that eventually caught the leaders. The first large accident occurred on lap 185 which involved 19 cars including Blaney who spun through the grass to avoid major damage.
  • With repairs made, Blaney would restart 12th when racing resumed on lap 190. The race would see three cautions in the final 13 laps which pushed the race into NASCAR overtime. On the final restart of the day, Blaney lined up behind Hamlin. A strong push got both drivers clear of the field. Eventually Ford Performance teammates Buescher and Ryan Newman managed to pass both drivers with Newman soon taking the lead with a push from Blaney. Coming to the checkered flag both Blaney and Newman jockeyed for the race lead with Hamlin nipping the Menards/Peak Ford at the finish line by .014. The finish was the second closest in Daytona 500 history.

Quote: "We pushed (Ryan) Newman there to the lead and then we got a push from the 11. I kind of went low and he blocked that and so I was committed to pushing him to the win and have a Ford win it. We just got the bumpers hooked up wrong and I turned him. It’s bittersweet to finish second in the Daytona 500, but I hope he is alright. It looked bad. I was trying to push him to the win. I don’t like saying that things just happen because I feel bad about it. I just hope Ryan is alright."


No. 22 Shell-Pennzoil Ford Mustang – Joey Logano
Start: 3rd
Stage 1: 4th
Stage 2: 10th
Finish: 28th
Status: Accident
Laps Completed: 200/209
Laps Led: 6
Point Standings (behind first): 13th (-11)

Notes:

  • Joey Logano started third and finished 28th in the 62nd annual Daytona 500 in the No. 22 Shell-Pennzoil Ford Mustang. The race, which began on Sunday afternoon and concluded Monday evening after a postponement for rain saw Logano spend a majority of the day inside the top-10 and contending for the race lead before being swept up in a late race incident, ending the team’s day prior to the checkered flag.
  • After a brief delay for rain, the 62nd annual Daytona 500 got underway with Logano immediately powering to the second position with a quartet of Ford Performance teammates behind him. The lead group quickly settled to the outside lane, following the No. 47 of polesitter Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  • The field continued to run single file until the caution flag was displayed again on lap 20 due to rain falling in Turn 2. The Shell-Pennzoil crew began formulating a pit strategy should NASCAR open pit road early in the caution. Unfortunately, rain brought the race to a halt and forced a continuation on Monday.
  • When the race resumed, Logano brought the Shell-Pennzoil Ford Mustang to pit road for four tires and fuel on lap 22. Quick work by the Shell-Pennzoil pit crew sent Logano back to the track with the lead. Logano ran inside the top-10 for the opening 10 laps of the run, however, dropped outside the top-10 as a group started pushing forward on the inside lane. On lap 54, Logano reported he needed additional rear grip in the Shell-Pennzoil Ford, saying the car was entering a four-wheel slide. Logano began a forward march, reaching the seventh position before the caution flag was displayed with seven laps remaining in the first stage.
  • Logano lined up in the seventh position and was able to race up to the fourth position in the two lap dash to the end of the first stage. The team elected to pit for four tires, air pressure and a chassis adjustment to help the handling for the second stage. Logano would restart the second stage in the 15th position. A caution flag on lap 90 offered an opportunity for the field to pit and put them in a position to make the end of the second stage without returning to pit road. The 22 team elected to take two tires and fuel. Logano would finish the stage in the tenth position.
  • As the third stage began the field raced two-by-two for the majority of the opening laps as the field neared a potential final pit stop of the race. Logano dove to pit road from the race lead at lap 170 for two tires and fuel to finish the race should it go green. Logano was running inside the top-five when a 19-car pileup collected the majority of the field on the backstretch, with the driver of the Shell-Pennzoil Ford narrowly missing the spinning car of Aric Almirola.
  • Logano lined up fourth with 10 laps remaining. He pushed race leader Ryan Newman clear and moved to the second position, prior to a caution flag being displayed with seven laps to go. Unfortunately, Logano’s evening would come to an end prematurely as he was swept into the outside wall in a multi-vehicle incident, finishing in the 26th position..

Quote: "We had a really good Shell-Pennzoil Ford Mustang all weekend. Unfortunate that we were just wrong place, wrong time. Obviously our thoughts and prayers just stop out to Ryan Newman and his family right now."

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