Johnson wins, Byron gets pole in Daytona

Florence Fletcher
February 14, 2019

No, it doesn't pay any points and doesn't count toward playoff qualifying, but the 75-lap exhibition race is the first event on the NASCAR calendar, so that's worth something. He loves the historical significance and the present message about their preparation for the season's biggest race.

Knaus made a statement in 2002 when he and Johnson debuted at Daytona and won the pole in their first race together. A few hours into the day, things got off to a good start as he qualified third for the Daytona 500. Hendrick, after all, is from a romantic time in NASCAR when a vehicle salesman from Virginia could scrape together the money to enter the Daytona 500 and turn a fledgling little Chevrolet team into one of the most valuable properties in sports. It's the second time in the last three years the team has swept the prized grid positions.

Greg Ebert for Austin Dillon, Billy Plourde for Ty Dillon and Josh Kirk for Elliott will not be allowed to return to the garage until the next race at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

"Becki and I could not be prouder of William's successes, and we are excited to watch the No. 24 in action in the Daytona 500 next weekend", said Liberty President Jerry Falwell. "This is also a very new team to the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series". There were certain points where the Team Penske cars were all lined-up within the top-five and rival manufacturer driver's said they couldn't touch them. Elliott won the pole in 2016 and 2017. Xfinity Series crew chief Kevin Mendeering was promoted to Johnson's team. They had a lot of guys that weren't pole winners (in the field on Sunday).

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Johnson said there definitely wasn't intent. "William is his age (21)". No secret we didn't have the year we wanted last year, so coming out of the gate, no matter what happens, we get to celebrate this for a week.

"Any time you can get up beside somebody by an inch or so it just is such a big parachute on either side of the auto", Hamlin said. I've had that question for 35 years, or as many years as I've run two cars. Both Menard and Johnson slightly drifted toward each other, resulting in contact and initiating the "Big One". After going winless previous year, he heard the calls that he was past his prime and should retire. It is important to note that the rules package used for today's race will be the last time it is used, as the Duels on Thursday and next Sunday's Daytona 500 will have a completely different package with tapered spacers.

ARCA a year ago was acquired by NASCAR, and series president Ron Drager said that move strengthened ARCA's ability to land Menards.

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