For the second consecutive week, Daytona International Speedway produced the first-timer winner in the NASCAR Cup Series.
Christopher Bell of Joe Gibbs Racing earned the honors on the track’s road course, taking the lead over Joey Logano with two laps to go with a comfortable 2.119-second win over the 2018 series champion.
More: Highlights from Sunday’s road course race at Daytona
Bell, 26, is the 2017 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series champion and this is his second season at the Premier level, his first driving for the Championship Gibbs organization. However, his work was reminiscent of a veteran on Sunday. There were eight vigilante flags, eight race leaders and a whole lot of action on the wavy lap.
Below is more about Bell’s win, plus the full results of Sunday’s O’Reilly Auto Parts 253 at the Daytona Road Course.
Who won the NASCAR race yesterday?
Christopher Bell encircled Joey Logano in the yard just before the white flag and easily extended his first career NASCAR Cup Series trophy.
“It’s definitely one of the highlights of my life so far,” said a smiling Bell after climbing the roof of his No. 20 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota, where he signed No. 1 at Grandstands.
Bell had an exciting and enigmatic final dozen laps for the win. Race winner and prestigious series champion Chase Elliott led a race-best 45 laps, but was stuck in heavy traffic after his final pit stop with 15 laps remaining. He won Stage 1 and was in fifth place after rallying at the front with six laps when he came out to roam – when he suffered a chain-reaction collision in fender-to-fender racing. He eventually came home 21st, drawing a four-race road racing win streak.
NASCAR Results in Daytona
Behind Bell and Logano, Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Denny Hamlin of Bell finished third, followed by Kurt Busch and Brad Keselowski.
Kevin Harvick, AJ Almdinger, last week’s Daytona 500 winner Michael McDowell – first-time winner – Ryan Presey and Alex Bowman placed in the top 10. This is only the third time in NASCAR Cup Cup history that a season has started with two – time winners, appearing in the inaugural seasons of 1949 and 1950.
With their first win, Bell now sits fourth in the NASCAR Cup Series standings. Hemlin, who won Stage 2, leads the championship by 12 points from Logano at the Dixie Vodka 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway next Sunday (3:30 pm ET; Fox, MRN, SeriousXM Nascale Radio).
Below are the full results from Sunday’s race at the Daytona Road Course.
|1 is||Christopher Bell|
|1 1.||Chris buescher|
|12.||Martin trux jr|
|1.||Ricky Stenhouse Jr.|
Holly Cann writes for NASCAR Wire Service.