A Massive Pileup and Heavy Weather Interrupt the Daytona 500
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Only 15 to 200 laps in a 16-car chain reaction accident brought chaos to the Daytona 500 after Sunday, and during the ensuing cleanup, a violent lightning storm and a rain shower halted the race.
Kyle Busch pushed Christopher Bell behind Eric Almirola, who was running second. Almirola’s car lost traction due to the double line paint on the inside of the track. It entered Alex Bowman’s car, which had started on the pole and was then running into third place.
As the leader, Kevin Harvick, without a thought, blindly packs a packed bunch of cars into the rubble. The cars slammed into the retaining wall, into each other, and into the infield in greater danger. It appeared that no one was hurt.
The hay barn had turned into a marsh with a week of rain. The mud flew in every direction, scattering the winds, blocking the drivers’ sight and blowing the track with mud.
The storm, along with a golf-ball-shaped hail, lightning, thunder and strong winds, also went on track as the cars were avoiding stopping. Still-running cars were ordered to pit on the road, and drivers were fitted with tarps above the cars. The race was halted and repairs were not permitted.
Fox Television, which broadcast the race, announced that 16 cars had suffered significant damage. The affected drivers included the early leader, Ryan Newman, who was making his return after a fatal accident at the end of last year’s race. Others involved included William Byron, the other Front Row starter; Martin Truex Jr .; Eric Jones; Kurt Busch; And Jamie McMurray. Ryan Blane made it through the wreck, only to spin in the infield mud, which tore the key components under his car. The cars of Almirola, Bowman and Newman looked very badly damaged for repair.
During the delay, driver Chase Briscoe’s wife, Marissa Briscoe, tweeted a picture of her husband, still dressed in his racing suit, ordering food on a Panda Express drive.
Authorities ordered the evacuation of the grandstands, with about 20,000 socially distracted fans as the storm intensified. Fox television camera positions were also ordered to leave. Track drying efforts, which typically require two to three hours after the rains stop, when an electrical warning was raised after one hour.
Prares favorite Denny Hamlin, who survived the crash completely for the third consecutive time going to the Daytona 500 victory, fell to the back of the field on purpose. He said he had a “premiere” that could be something.
“Prophecy,” he said, shrunk. He said that Hemlin won three of the last five Daytona 500s and followed his instinct to finish fourth in the second.
Darrell Wallace Jr., who drives for the team, Hamlin started with basketball veteran Michael Jordan, taking out his first yellow flag of the race on Race 3 when he tangled with Derrick Cope. After minor repairs, Wallace was able to continue, although Cope, the oldest driver at age 62, exited the crash.
Harvick was made the leader after the race was flagged off. More thunderstorms occurred on Sunday evening and it was unclear whether the race would resume or postpone.