Tha Sports Junkies 101

Denny Hamlin Wins Daytona 500 In Closest Finish In History


In one of the most exciting finishes in recent memory, Denny Hamlin held off Martin Truex Jr. to win Sunday’s 58th Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway by .01 of a second, the closest finish in the history of the Great American Race since the advent of electronic timing and scoring.

Truex looked like he might win, but Hamlin made a surge just before the start-finish line to take the checkered flag. It was Hamlin’s first career win in 11 starts in the 500, and also the first win with new crew chief Mike Wheeler.

“I don’t know where that came from, I don’t know what happened, I can’t even figure out what I did, but it all just came together.” Race winner Denny Hamlin, who appeared in complete shock in victory lane said after winning the Daytona 500. Defending Sprint Cup champ Kyle Busch in third, Kevin Harvick in fourth and Carl Edwards to round out the top five.

“I did all I could do,” Truex said. “I’m really proud of that effort. He just side-drafted me. I probably should have run (Hamlin) up a little more. I lost it at the last second. Congrats to Denny. He just got me by a couple feet.”

The next race is the Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 on Sunday, Feb. 28, at Atlanta Motor Speedway.