Tha Sports Junkies 101

Almirola Claims Win In Wild Daytona Xfinity Race


Lately, NASCAR races at the two tracks where restrictor plates are used have become quite a display of carnage and bizarre finishes. Friday night’s Subway Firecracker 250 at Daytona International Speedway for the NASCAR Xfinity Series was no exception and that’s just fine by Aric Almirola.

The typical restrictor plate fare was on full display in an event with 8 caution flags, including 2 for multicar accidents on the backstretch. The second time “The Big One” struck, the field had already taken the white flag. With several drivers sustaining heavy impacts, NASCAR made the decision to put out the yellow flag to allow safety workers to reach any drivers that needed attention.

When the yellow lights came on, Almirola was locked in a side by side battle with Justin Allgaier for the top spot. After reviewing footage for several minutes, the call was made that Almirola was in the lead at the moment of caution.

Joey Logano appeared to have the best of the field throughout the race. But Logano made a move to block Chase Elliott while leading that came a split second too late. Logano was shuffled back but recovered to finish 4th.

Several favorites saw their hopes for victory evaporate quickly. A 14 car crash on lap 15 damaged the cars of Austin Dillon, Eric Jones, and Daniel Suarez among others. Jones and Suarez would each have additional problems in single car incidents later after returning to the track.

With contenders dropping by the wayside throughout the event, Almirola steered his Ford clear of the carnage to claim his second official Xfinity Series win. Almirola started in place of Denny Hamlin in a race at Milwaukee in 2007. Hamlin arrived late to the track and upon taking over, drove the car to a win. But as the starting driver, Almirola was credited with the victory. Friday night marked his second win on the Daytona tri oval, following a 2014 Coke Zero 400 triumph.

Third place was Ryan Sieg, followed by Logano, and Brendan Gaughan. 6th was Ryan Reed, 7th went to Jeff Green and Spencer Gallagher came home 8th. Rounding out the top 10 was Chase Elliott and Eric Jones.

The NASCAR Xfinity Series returns to the track Saturday July 9th at Kentucky Speedway.