2008 Daytona 500

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2008 Daytona 500
Race details
Race 1 of 36 in the 2008 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season
Daytona50050th edited.jpg
Date February 17, 2008 (2008-02-17)
Location Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida
Course Permanent racing facility
2.5 mi (4.023 km)
Distance 200 laps, 500 mi (800 km)
Weather Temperatures reaching up to 82 °F (28 °C); wind speeds approaching 11.1 miles per hour (17.9 km/h)[1]
Average speed 152.672 miles per hour (245.702 km/h)
Pole position
Driver Jimmie Johnson Hendrick Motorsports
Qualifying race winners
Duel 1 Winner Dale Earnhardt, Jr. Hendrick Motorsports
Duel 2 Winner Denny Hamlin Joe Gibbs Racing
Most laps led
Driver Kyle Busch Joe Gibbs Racing
Laps 86
Winner
No. 12
Ryan Newman
Penske Racing
Television in the United States
Network Fox
Announcers Mike Joy, Darrell Waltrip and Larry McReynolds
Nielsen Ratings 10.2/20
2008 Sprint Cup Series
Chase for the Sprint Cup
Italics - Non-Points Races

The 2008 Daytona 500 was the 50th annual running of "The Great American Race". The race took place on Sunday, February 17, 2008 at the Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. The race was the 50th to be run since the first in 1959, won by Lee Petty. To commemorate the event, the Harley J. Earl Trophy, which goes to the winner of the race, was plated in gold instead of silver. In addition, the winning car was placed on display for one year at the Daytona 500 Experience attraction just outside Turn Four. Ryan Newman won the race, his only win in the 2008 season.

A number of firsts[edit]

The race was the first Daytona 500 win for Penske Racing and the first run using NASCAR's Car of Tomorrow, which was introduced in 2007 and became standard in 2008. Additionally, this was the first official race under the new Sprint Cup banner as the telecommunications giant replaces NEXTEL as the series sponsor after their 2005 merger. Ryan Newman's victory with the number 12 car in the Daytona 500 was the first time since Bobby Allison's #12 won the race in 1988, 20 years prior.

Television and radio coverage[edit]

The race was televised on FOX in the USA, with the telecast scheduled beginning at 2 p.m. EST. 1960 Daytona 500 winner Junior Johnson drove the pace car and the green flag was waved the honorary starter, seven-time race winner Richard Petty around 3:30 p.m. Radio coverage was handled by MRN Radio and started at about 2:30 EST. Trisha Yearwood performed the national anthem, followed by a flyover from the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds precision flying team. As many as 31 past champions of this race served as Grand Marshals for this historic event to deliver the command to start the engines.

Celebrity tickets for charity[edit]

To commemorate the golden running of "The Great American Race", Daytona International Speedway held a “Celebrity Tickets for Charity” competition. Those designs were whittled on daytona500.com by internet users down to the top ten choices. Celebrities including Daytona 500 winners Kevin Harvick, Dale Earnhardt, Jr., Michael Waltrip, Jimmie Johnson and Mario Andretti, sitcom stars Jason Lee and Leah Remini, TV hosts Kelly Ripa (Live with Regis and Kelly), Jeff Foxworthy (Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader?) and Carson Daly (Last Call with Carson Daly), NASCAR announcers Mike Joy from FOX and Dr. Jerry Punch from ESPN, wrestler Goldberg and skateboarding legend Tony Hawk submitted ticket designs. A blue-ribbon panel made up of NASCAR's family selected the winner and announced it prior to the running of the Pepsi 400, with the ten finalists among Harvick (defending 2007 champion), Earnhardt, Jr. (2004 winner), Andretti (1967 winner) and Marvin Panch (1961 winner), Hawk, Joy, Katie Cole (the second of two designs), Foxworthy, and two children – 17-year-old Patrick McRae (for Jimmie Johnson, the 2006 winner) and seven-year-old Derek Wynne (for owner Rick Hendrick). Foxworthy was later declared the winner of the contest and his winning ticket artwork along with the others of all the celebrities were auctioned off to benefit the Jeff Gordon Foundation.

Purse[edit]

As befitting the official start of the NASCAR season, the posted awards (announced on January 28, 2008) was a record $18,689,238 (US), with the winning team and their driver taking home a minimum of $1,445,250.[2]

Race recap[edit]

Pole Qualifying and Gatorade Duels[edit]

Main article: 2008 Gatorade Duels

As is the unique approach that is The Great American Race, qualifying, which was held on February 10, only the top two drivers (which will be the front row) were locked in, with Jimmie Johnson taking position one and Michael Waltrip sitting next to him. Also qualifying via the fastest speeds among the "Go or Go Home" entries were Joe Nemechek and David Reutimann. The remaining spots were determined by the top finishers excluding the front row drivers in two 150-mile (240 km) races called the Gatorade Duels, which were raced February 14, which filled the next 36 positions. The remaining spots were determined by exemptions and the fastest speeds and a champions provisional.

Drivers in boldface qualified to the Daytona 500.

Top Ten Finishers (Race #1)
Pos. Car # Driver Car Make Team
1 88 Dale Earnhardt, Jr. Chevrolet Hendrick Motorsports
2 41 Reed Sorenson Dodge Chip Ganassi Racing
3 12 Ryan Newman Dodge Penske Racing
4 5 Casey Mears Chevrolet Hendrick Motorsports
5 99 Carl Edwards Ford Roush Fenway Racing
6 43 Bobby Labonte Dodge Petty Enterprises
7 42 Juan Pablo Montoya Dodge Chip Ganassi Racing
8 87 Kenny Wallace Chevrolet Furniture Row Racing
9 77 Sam Hornish, Jr. Dodge Penske Racing
10 15 Paul Menard Chevrolet Dale Earnhardt, Inc.

Also advancing to Daytona 500: 83-Brian Vickers

Top Ten Finishers (Race #2)
Pos. Car # Driver Car Make Team
1 11 Denny Hamlin Toyota Joe Gibbs Racing
2 20 Tony Stewart Toyota Joe Gibbs Racing
3 24 Jeff Gordon Chevrolet Hendrick Motorsports
4 9 Kasey Kahne Dodge Gillett Evernham Motorsports
5 8 Mark Martin Chevrolet Dale Earnhardt, Inc.
6 6 David Ragan Ford Roush Fenway Racing
7 29 Kevin Harvick Chevrolet Richard Childress Racing
8 16 Greg Biffle Ford Roush Fenway Racing
9 44 Dale Jarrett Toyota Michael Waltrip Racing
10 34 John Andretti Chevrolet Front Row Motorsports

NOTE: Race #2 was extended four laps due to green-white-checker finish rule.

Failed to qualify:

Race[edit]

In the beginning of the race, Michael Waltrip and Jimmie Johnson started on the front row. For the first 151 laps, there were only two caution flags thrown for debris. Jeff Gordon went to the garage after leading a few laps due to a broken suspension. On lap 161, David Ragan tried to block Matt Kenseth, but brought out the third caution after Ragan squeezed his teammate into the wall. The next caution happened on lap 176, when polesitter Jimmie Johnson spun onto the Daytona Superstretch, and Martin Truex Jr. was spun because of the shuffle in the field. Clint Bowyer led the next two laps, but was shuffled through the field and was eventually spun by Juan Pablo Montoya, bringing out the fifth caution of the race. Bowyer did not have any damage from the crash. The biggest crash of the race happened on lap 189, when Kevin Harvick sent Dave Blaney into the wall, collecting Mark Martin, Michael Waltrip, Casey Mears, Kevin Harvick, Denny Hamlin, Travis Kvapil and Carl Edwards. Mears did not pit and wound up 4th in the field despite minor damage. On lap 195, Jeff Burton worked his way up to first. Casey Mears tried to block Tony Stewart, who went with Burton, but turned himself into the wall, bringing out another caution. Jeff Burton had a fuel problem on the restart, resulting in Tony Stewart passing him on the outside, bringing Ryan Newman, the Busch brothers and Reed Sorenson. Stewart led the next two laps. On the last lap, Kyle Busch jumped to the inside, bringing teammate Tony Stewart with him. Ryan Newman was on the outside now. It was a shootout going into the final turn between Ryan Newman, Tony Stewart, and the Busch Brothers. Kyle Busch jumped to the inside of Tony Stewart, but Kurt Busch pushed Ryan Newman, allowing Newman to win the 50th running of the Daytona 500 with Kurt Busch in tow.

Results of the 50th Daytona 500
Pos Start Car Driver Make Team Laps Status Winnings
(in US$)
1 7 12 Ryan Newman Dodge Penske Racing 200 Running $1,506,040
2 43 2 Kurt Busch Dodge Penske Racing 200 Running $1,063,870
3 6 20 Tony Stewart Toyota Joe Gibbs Racing 200 Running $871,049
4 24 18 Kyle Busch Toyota Joe Gibbs Racing 200 Running $652,938
5 5 41 Reed Sorenson Dodge Chip Ganassi Racing 200 Running $545,959
6 35 19 Elliott Sadler Dodge Gillett Evernham Motorsports 200 Running $430,015
7 10 9 Kasey Kahne Dodge Gillett Evernham Motorsports 200 Running $389,204
8 26 7 Robby Gordon* Dodge Robby Gordon Motorsports 200 Running $352,921
9 3 88 Dale Earnhardt, Jr. (W) Chevrolet Hendrick Motorsports 200 Running $352,920
10 18 16 Greg Biffle Ford Roush Fenway Racing 200 Running $313,763
11 13 43 Bobby Labonte Dodge Petty Enterprises 200 Running $329,756
12 23 83 Brian Vickers Toyota Red Bull Racing Team 200 Running $285,245
13 36 31 Jeff Burton Chevrolet Richard Childress Racing 200 Running $323,496
14 16 29 Kevin Harvick (W) Chevrolet Richard Childress Racing 200 Running $322,224
15 19 77 Sam Hornish, Jr. (R) Dodge Penske Racing 200 Running $319,845
16 20 44 Dale Jarrett (W) Toyota Michael Waltrip Racing 200 Running $277,213
17 4 11 Denny Hamlin Toyota Joe Gibbs Racing 200 Running $341,416
18 42 00 David Reutimann Toyota Michael Waltrip Racing 200 Running $291,221
19 11 99 Carl Edwards Ford Roush Fenway Racing 200 Running $321,520
20 25 1 Martin Truex, Jr. Chevrolet Dale Earnhardt, Inc. 200 Running $303,978
21 27 66 Scott Riggs Chevrolet Haas CNC Racing 200 Running $287,928
22 21 15 Paul Menard Chevrolet Dale Earnhardt, Inc. 200 Running $279,295
23 33 70 Jeremy Mayfield Chevrolet Haas CNC Racing 200 Running $271,220
24 31 07 Clint Bowyer Chevrolet Richard Childress Racing 200 Running $284,545
25 37 96 J.J. Yeley Toyota Hall of Fame Racing 200 Running $277,095
26 38 26 Jamie McMurray Ford Roush Fenway Racing 200 Running $276,888
27 1 48 Jimmie Johnson (W) Chevrolet Hendrick Motorsports 200 Running $329,606
28 32 38 David Gilliland Ford Yates Racing 200 Running $278,746
29 2 55 Michael Waltrip (W) Toyota Michael Waltrip Racing 200 Running $275,135
30 30 28 Travis Kvapil Ford Yates Racing 200 Running $291,202
31 12 8 Mark Martin Chevrolet Dale Earnhardt, Inc. 200 Running $301,846
32 15 42 Juan Pablo Montoya Dodge Chip Ganassi Racing 200 Running $290,753
33 40 40 Dario Franchitti (R) Dodge Chip Ganassi Racing −1 Running $270,613
34 39 45 Kyle Petty Dodge Petty Enterprises −3 Running $260,320
35 9 5 Casey Mears Chevrolet Hendrick Motorsports −6 Accident $284,945
36 28 17 Matt Kenseth Ford Roush Fenway Racing −6 Running $308,129
37 29 01 Regan Smith (R) Chevrolet Dale Earnhardt, Inc. −6 Running $267,095
38 34 22 Dave Blaney Toyota Bill Davis Racing −11 Accident $259,563
39 8 24 Jeff Gordon (W) Chevrolet Hendrick Motorsports −14 Suspension $319,599
40 22 34 John Andretti Chevrolet Front Row Motorsports −16 Running $258,613
41 41 78 Joe Nemechek Chevrolet Furniture Row Racing −29 Running $258,470
42 14 6 David Ragan Ford Roush Fenway Racing −39 Accident $267,763
43 17 87 Kenny Wallace Chevrolet Furniture Row Racing −59 Engine $256,735

(W) – Denotes former race winner. (R) – Denotes rookie.

• – Led most laps

Average Speed: 152.672 mph (245.702 km/h)
Margin of Victory: .092 seconds
Time of Race: Three hours, 16 minutes and 30 seconds
Lead Changes: 42 among 17 drivers
Cautions: Seven for 23 laps[3]

* — On Wednesday, February 20, NASCAR docked Robby Gordon and his self-owned team both 100 owner and driver points for violations during the first day of inspections back on February 8, including an illegal nose cover. His crew chief, Frank Kerr, was fined $100,000, suspended for the next six races starting at California, and was placed on probation until 12/31/08 as a result. An appeal, heard on March 5, the points penalties and the Kerr suspension were overturned, however, the fine was increased to $150,000,

Gallery[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Weather of the 2008 Daytona 500". The Old Farmers' Almanac. Archived from the original on 2013-07-05. Retrieved 2013-06-21. 
  2. ^ Jayski.com
  3. ^ NASCAR.com

External links[edit]