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Kenseth wins Daytona 500

Matt Kenseth completed a dramatic back-to-front win in the 51st running of the Daytona 500 after rain forced the event to be stopped after 152 laps.

The Roush Fenway Racing man had been forced to start from the back of the field after going to his back-up car following a shunt in the Gatorade Duels, but was able to pass Elliott Sadler for the lead of the race during the final green flag period.

The arrival of rain then saw the race red-flagged and with the forecast suggesting that it wasn't going to stop anytime soon, the result was called with Kenseth victorious from Kevin Harvick and former open-wheel racer AJ Allmendinger.

The race got underway with Martin Truex Jr leading the field away from pole, but he led for only a lap before being overhauled by fellow front-row starter Mark Martin and then Kyle Busch, who would turn out to be the dominant force in the opening half of the race.

The first of eight caution periods came on the ninth lap when Aric Almirola got out of shape into turn three and suffered a spin onto the infield, with a number of drivers electing to turn to pitroad. The leader wasn't amongst them and Busch then led the way when the race went green on lap eleven ahead of Martin and Bobby Labonte.

The field was split when Scott Riggs got loose on lap 18 and held up the pack behind but a competition caution shortly after 25 laps – called due to rain earlier in the day – backed the field back up, with Greg Biffle briefly taking the lead after staying out when the pack ahead pitted.

Busch was quickest off pit road to emerge as the leader when the race went green again on lap 30 and held the lead until Earnhardt was able to find a way past on lap 50, with the pair having previously run side-by-side on lap 39 with the Hendrick man making an unsuccessful move for the lead.

Earnhardt's move gave Tony Stewart the chance to follow him through and Stewart then moved into the lead within a lap before the third caution came out on lap 55 due to Travis Kvapil going into the wall with what appeared to be a right-front puncture.

Stewart held the lead through the pitstops that followed, although Earnhardt's evening started to go wrong when he missed his pit and was forced to go round again before returning to pitroad on the following lap.



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Matt Kenseth celebrate victory in the Daytona 500 [Pic credit: Getty for NASCAR]
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marbles - Unregistered

February 16, 2009 3:16 PM

Kenseth was handed win. Typical Neckar race. Rain was always in the forecast , race should have started 2 hrs earlier. As always it is driven by TV. Cut out the 4 hr pre race show with the babbling analysts, and the country singers. Bring on the F1 season asap.

JDS - Unregistered

February 18, 2009 4:42 AM

Then Why did You bother? NASCAR goes well with an afternoon Nap! TV drives F1 as well! Bernie doesn't even care about Your Existance!



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