Tyler Reddick Edges Elliott Sadler In Closest NASCAR Finish In Quintuple Overtime At Daytonaby Camille Jones February 17, 2018 0 comments
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – In a stellar photo finish, Tyler Reddick beat Elliott Sadler to the checkered flag by 0.000 seconds to win the NASCAR XFINITY Series PowerShares QQQ 300 at Daytona International Speedway on Saturday.
The margin of victory marked the closest finish in NASCAR national series history. Reddick, driver of JR Motorsports No. 9 BurgerFi Chevrolet won in a battle of attrition, holding off the field in a fifth NASCAR Overtime attempt following a series of late cautions. The race was scheduled to run 120 laps, but with caution laps and Overtime attempts, as well as a 5 min, 27 second red flag, the race was complete after 143 laps. The win marked Reddick’s second-career NASCAR XFINITY Series victory.
“It’s just incredible it worked out that way, and I’m glad that with through teamwork it came down to either me or Elliott that was going to win that race,” Reddick said. “He did an outstanding job pushing me on those last couple restarts, getting me out there, and pretty much putting himself in position where he could push me out there, get me out there. He got himself free, and he was able to get by me and then I was able to get pushed. It’s teamwork at its best. It was either going to be me winning or him winning, and either way that’s a win for Dale (team owner, Earnhardt Jr.) and the rest of the team. I’m just glad it was us winning, and I know it’s going to be really tough when we come back to these superspeedways, and I’m just thankful it was me that won.”
Sadler gave his JR Motorsports teammate a shove on the final restart, sending him out to the lead over Ryan Reed. Sadler’s second-place finish was so close that the winner was determined by a photo.
“I mean, it’s just a tough finish,” Sadler said. “You know, it was a great race. Tyler drove a great job on those restarts and getting his momentum going and blocking good. I backed up to Ryan and the 11 car off of Turn 2 and got a good shot down the backstretch and made a move on him to side by side, and when we were coming off Turn 4, I was trying to decide how much to side draft and not side draft, and right before we got to the line, he did a really good job of coming down and kind of bumping us a little bit and stalling our momentum to win the race, so a great move for Tyler.”
Ryan Reed, a two-time winner at Daytona International Speedway came home with a third-place finish, unable to get a big enough run to beat the JR Motorsports teammates. Reed had finished inside the top-10 in five of his nine starts at Daytona.
“Daytona is such an up and down race,” said Reed. “You never know what you are going to get when you come here. Got involved in someone else’s mess early on and just tried to recover all day. We picked the right lanes late in the race and got up to the top-10, then the leaders wrecked and the next thing you know we are on the front row. I didn’t think we had a good enough car to lead there with all the damage but we could push really well. I focused on that and my Ford Mustang had a lot of power. Thanks to Roush Yates and Jack and Lilly Diabetes and everyone that supports this deal. What a great way to start the season.”
Kaz Grala and Garrett Smithley both earned top-five finishes, finishing fourth and fifth respectively.
Rounding out the top-10 was Spencer Gallagher, Ryan Truex, Daniel Suarez, Ross Chastain and Brandon Jones.
The 100th race for XFINITY as the title partner for the series started off with a comfortable approach, with few early incidents. The final stage of the event was everything but lackluster as crashes marred the event.
Kyle Larson dominated the 30-lap Stage 1 in the race before winning the stage. Chase Elliott put on a show to win the 30-lap Stage 2.
In the dicey nature of superspeedways, there were 12 cautions for a total of 49 laps in the event.
The yellow flag flew on lap 123 for the largest “Big One” of the event, where 18 cars were involved. The wreck occurred when Aric Almirola hooked Kyle Larson who was in the lead, sending him into the wall and spinning through the field, collecting many cars as others collided.
The huge incident spiraled off a series of several more accidents, as well as leaving several cars running low on fuel as NASCAR Overtime attempts continued to fail due to the caution flying before the leader would take the white flag. The race saw five NASCAR Overtimes before the checkered flag finally flew.
The NASCAR XFINITY Series will visit Atlanta Motor Speedway on Saturday, February 24 for the Rinnai 250. Live coverage will be found at 2 p.m. on FOX Sports 1 (FS1) and the Performance Racing Network (PRN).
Photo Credit: Robert Laberge/Getty Images
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