William Byron Claims Career-First Daytona 500 Pole in Sunday Qualifying

Tanya Simon
February 13, 2019

Of the 20 drivers who started the race, 11 finished it and nine finished it on the lead lap. He loves the historical significance and the present message about their preparation for the season's biggest race.

Jimmie Johnson triggered a wreck that wiped out almost the entire field at Daytona and zipped to the lead to win the rain-shortened exhibition Clash on Sunday.

Listen to "NASCAR Show: Talking Daytona 500 Qualifying and the Clash at Daytona" on Spreaker.

The 21-year-old Byron and 25-year-old teammate Alex Bowman locked in the front row for "The Great American Race" during qualifying laps Sunday at Daytona International Speedway. "Extremely excited to win".

"It's just unbelievable to have four cars qualify like that, then have Jimmie win the Clash".

It marks the 700 NASCAR Cup pole position for Chevrolet. "Working closely with the NASCAR team to design new slides featuring drivers, names, numbers, signatures and auto replicas, has been an awesome creative process" claims Tyler Nordquist, ISlide's Licensing liaison.

The race only featured 20 cars and was shortened due to rain.

Johnson won on a day that was dominated by Hendrick Motorsports. A few hours later, Johnson finally won a race after none last season.

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The wreck occurred when Menard, leading the race in the outside line, inched down the track in an attempt to keep Johnson from passing for the lead.

It was race number one for Johnson and his new crew chief Kevin Meendering, who came over from the Xfinity series, where he was the crew chief for perennial championship contender Elliott Sadler.

All of them were winners this weekend.

Following 17 years together, a legendary pairing of crew chief Chad Knaus and driver Jimmie Johnson split to start the 2019 season. "I felt like from past year, it was one of the longest that I ran". "For the 500, people usually don't care if they have to go to the back so they will make it two-wide and it certainly got racier towards the end".

Kurt Busch, who was riding behind both of them, said Johnson stayed in Menard's "no zone" too long, referring to his left-rear quarterpanel, which is what sucked him into the No. 48. Last year, he endured the first winless season in his entire full-time career.

ARCA past year was acquired by NASCAR, and series president Ron Drager said that move strengthened ARCA's ability to land Menards. Maybe drivers were tip-toeing around the 1.5-mile speedway, creating a rainy conditions, and this will mean nothing come next Sunday. And he made no apologies for the close-quarter racing in the Clash that resulted in his first victory since June, 2017, at Dover, Del.

"The thing we've worked on extremely hard during the offseason with the new guys is just the procedures, going through the procedural duties and making sure we don't miss anything".

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