Daytona 500: Ryan Blaney wins Stage 2 as more contenders crash out

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Daytona 500: Ryan Blaney wins Stage 2 as more contenders crash out
Lee Spencer
By: Lee Spencer
Feb 18, 2018, 10:13 PM

Ryan Blaney won Stage 2 of the Daytona 500 on Sunday.

Ryan Blaney, Team Penske Ford Fusion
Ryan Blaney, Team Penske Ford Fusion
Ryan Blaney, Team Penske Ford Fusion
Chase Elliott, Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet Camaro, Danica Patrick, Premium Motorsports Chevrolet Camaro, Kasey Kahne, Leavine Family Racing Chevrolet Camaro wreck
Flyover for the start of the 60th Daytona 500
Chase Elliott, Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet Camaro, Danica Patrick, Premium Motorsports Chevrolet Camaro, Kasey Kahne, Leavine Family Racing Chevrolet Camaro wreck

The No. 12 Team Penske Ford led 46 laps en route to the segment win at Daytona International Speedway. 

Paul Menard finished .065-seconds behind Blaney. Joey Logano finished third followed by Almirola, Michael McDowell, Martin Truex Jr., Bubba Wallace, Trevor Bayne, Austin Dillon and Denny Hamlin. Twenty-one cars remained on the lead lap. 

Kurt Busch led the field to the pits, but slid through his stall and fell to 22nd. Bowman assumed the lead followed by Blaney, Harvick, Menard, Almirola, Keselowski, Brendan Gaughan, Stenhouse, Clint Bowyer and Kasey Kahne. Danica Patrick, Trevor Bayne, Gray Gaulding, Bubba Wallace and Ryan Newman rounded out the top 15 on the Lap 67 restart. Denny Hamlin, who was the lucky dog, restarted 29th.

Blaney went to the lead on Lap 68 followed by Menard, Keselowski, Bowman, Stenhouse, Harvick, Kahne, Almirola, Bayne and Gaughan.

Kurt Busch moved back into the top 15 by Lap 70. Blaney maintained the lead on Lap 75 followed by Menard with Bowman trying to make the inside line work.

The top five cars ran single-file coming to Lap 85 with Blaney in the lead followed by Menard, Keselowski, Harvick and Almirola. Bowman, Bayne, Elliott, Stenhouse and Bowyer rounded out the top 10. With a run, Bowman moved up to fifth on the inside line with Elliott and Bowyer behind him.

Blaney led a line of eight cars coming to the line at Lap 90. On Lap 91, Byron hit the wall coming  out of Turn 4. He was running 12th. NASCAR called the fourth caution one lap later as the No. 24 Chevy limped to pit road. 

Blaney continued to lead followed by Menard, Keselowski, Harvick, Elliott, Bowman, Bowyer, Almirola, Bayne, Kurt Busch, Stenhouse, Hamlin, Wallace, Truex, Kahne, Patrick, Newman, Ragan, Austin Dillon and Matt DiBenedetto. Truex remained on the track and assumed the lead. 

The race returned to green on Lap 97 with Truex at the point followed by Blaney, Keselowski, Harvick, Elliott, Ragan, Bayne, Kahne, Menard, Stenhouse, Kurt Busch Almirola, Bowyer, Hamlin and Austin Dillon.

Blaney attempted to pass Truex on the restart. Truex did his best to block Blaney, who completed the pass on Lap 98 into Turn 1. 

With 20 laps remaining in Stage 2, Blaney led followed by Keselowski, Harvick, Elliott, Bayne, Truex, Ragan, Menard, Kahne and Kurt Busch.

Another multi-car crash

Coming through Turn 3 on Lap 102, Keselowski got in the back of Elliott’s bumper to trigger the fifth caution. The No. 9 Chevy spun into the field and collected Harvick, Patrick, McDowell, Ragan, Bowyer and Kahne. The No. 4 Stewart-Haas Racing team violated the damage vehicle policy and Harvick was forced to retire to the garage.

Twenty-four cars remained on the lead lap with Blaney at the point followed by Truex, Bayne, Menard, Kurt Busch, Stenhouse, Hamlin, Almirola, Wallace and Gaulding with 12 laps remaining in the stage.

Blaney led with 10 laps to go with Menard pushing from behind. Their fellow Fords Bayne, Stenhouse and Kurt Busch completed the top five. Following damage to the grille of the No. 17 Ford, Stenhouse began overheating with seven laps remaining in the stage and was forced to pit. He dropped to 25th with five laps left in the stage. 

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About this article

Series NASCAR Cup
Event Daytona 500
Location Daytona International Speedway
Drivers Ryan Blaney
Teams Wood Brothers Racing
Author Lee Spencer
Article type Race report