2006 Daytona 500

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2006 Daytona 500
Race details[1][2][3]
Race 1 of 36 in the 2006 NASCAR Nextel Cup Series
Track map of Daytona International Speedway showing mainly the speedway.
Track map of Daytona International Speedway showing mainly the speedway.
Date February 19, 2006 (2006-02-19)
Location Daytona International Speedway
Daytona Beach, Florida, U.S.
Course Permanent racing facility
2.5 mi (4.02336 km)
Distance 203 laps, 507.5 mi (816.742 km)
Scheduled Distance 200 laps, 500 mi (804.672 km)
Weather Temperatures reaching up to 71.6 °F (22.0 °C); wind speeds approaching 14 miles per hour (23 km/h)[1]
Average speed 142.734 miles per hour (229.708 km/h)[2][3]
Attendance 200,000[2]
Pole position
Driver Richard Childress Racing
Time 47.581
Qualifying race winners
Duel 1 Winner Elliott Sadler Robert Yates Racing
Duel 2 Winner Jeff Gordon Hendrick Motorsports
Most laps led
Driver Dale Earnhardt, Jr. Dale Earnhardt, Inc.
Laps 32
No. 48 Jimmie Johnson Hendrick Motorsports
Television in the United States
Network NBC
Announcers Bill Weber, Benny Parsons, and Wally Dallenbach Jr.
Nielsen Ratings 11.3/23
(19.4 million viewers)

The 2006 Daytona 500, the 48th running of the event, was the first race in the 2006 NASCAR Nextel Cup season. It was held on February 19, 2006 at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. Jimmie Johnson won the race in a green-white-checker finish. It was the second Daytona 500 in a row to go longer than 200 laps and 500 miles (800 km); this race, like the previous Daytona 500, had a total distance of 203 laps and 507.5 miles (816.7 km). This was also the first Daytona 500 to end after dark, ending even later than the 2005 race, in which the checkered flag had waved just a few moments after sunset.

Johnson's car failed pre-race inspection and as a result his crew chief, Chad Knaus was suspended for the first four races and the team was fined $200,000. As a result, Darian Grubb replaced him as crew chief. Knaus was not blocked, however, from contacting the team and by many accounts still had significant input. Johnson would go on to win his first championship that year.

Qualifying and Gatorade Duels[edit]

Jeff Burton won the pole for the race with a speed of over 189 mph,[2] and would start alongside Jeff Gordon in an all-Chevy front row. Elliott Sadler won the first Gatorade Duel (which was delayed by showers) and Gordon would win the second one, collecting his third career victory in a Daytona qualifying race.

Race summary[edit]

The weather dawned cloudy and cold for the 48th running of the "Great American Race", as Jeff Burton led the field to the green at 2:45 p.m., which at the time was the latest scheduled start in the history of the race (the reason for this was that NBC chose it as its lead-in program to the prime-time portion of its day's coverage of the Winter Olympic Games from Turin). There were several lead changes in the early part of the race, with a total of 32.[2][3] The first caution came on lap 18 when Martin Truex, Jr. hit the wall. During this caution, Burton was passed by Elliott Sadler for the lead a lap later. The race restarted on lap 20 and four laps later, Jeff Gordon took the led away from Sadler. Carl Edwards, a popular "dark horse candidate" for the Nextel Cup championship, had his day end early, as he was involved in a five-car pileup on lap 80 that collected Dale Jarrett, Kyle Petty, Jeff Green, J.J. Yeley, and Joe Nemechek. This was the biggest crash of the day, since the "Big One" never occurred. This would also bring out the third caution flag. Because of this, Edwards finished 43rd. Tony Stewart was a "magnet for controversy", tangling in two incidents with Jeff Gordon on lap 48 and Matt Kenseth on lap 106. The first incident, which left debris on the track,[2] brought out the second caution and the second brought out the fifth caution. Stewart was penalized for aggressive driving after the incident with Kenseth, in which he blocked the No. 17 car into the grass, causing it to spin and hit the turn 3 wall. Kenseth took matters into his own hands and was black-flagged for hitting Stewart's car in retaliation on pit road. The three drivers involved in these two incidents repaired their cars and got back into contention.

Jimmie Johnson had one of the strongest cars all day. He took the lead with 10 laps to go just as the ninth caution flag came out for an crash involving Gordon, Kurt Busch, Jamie McMurray, and Sterling Marlin. This set up a 10-lap battle for the win. The race was extended into "overtime" when McMurray and Burton collided on lap 197, bringing out yet the 10th caution. The green-white-checker finish ended when Casey Mears and Ryan Newman battled for second, leaving Johnson to take the victory. The race ended under caution when Greg Biffle crashed in turn 4, just before Johnson crossed the start-finish line. The 48th running of the Daytona 500 was the first win for the #48 car on a restrictor plate track. This was also Johnson's 19th career win and his first during his streak of five consecutive NASCAR Sprint Cup Championships from 2006 to 2010.

One surprise of this race was Kirk Shelmerdine, who finished 20th. He had barely qualified for the Daytona 500 and his independently-owned No. 27 was fielded with a car that had a borrowed engine and donated tires, as well as a team with a volunteer pit crew.


Pos Grid No. Driver Team Manufacturer Laps Led Time/Retired
1 9 48 Jimmie Johnson Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 203 24 Running
2 14 42 Casey Mears Chip Ganassi Racing Dodge 203 0 Running
3 18 12 Ryan Newman Penske Racing Dodge 203 23 Running
4 3 38 Elliott Sadler Robert Yates Racing Ford 203 5 Running
5 15 20 Tony Stewart Joe Gibbs Racing Chevrolet 203 20 Running
6 37 07 Clint Bowyer (R) Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 203 0 Running
7 35 25 Brian Vickers Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 203 21 Running
8 7 8 Dale Earnhardt, Jr. (W) Dale Earnhardt, Inc. Chevrolet 203 32 Running
9 23 21 Ken Schrader Wood Brothers Racing Ford 203 0 Running
10 25 88 Dale Jarrett (W) Robert Yates Racing Ford 203 0 Running
11 27 9 Kasey Kahne Evernham Motorsports Dodge 203 0 Running
12 10 6 Mark Martin Roush Racing Ford 203 19 Running
13 20 7 Robby Gordon Robby Gordon Motorsports Chevrolet 203 0 Running
14 28 29 Kevin Harvick Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 203 1 Running
15 11 17 Matt Kenseth Roush Racing Ford 203 28 Running
16 19 1 Martin Truex, Jr. Dale Earnhardt, Inc. Chevrolet 203 0 Running
17 43 96 Terry Labonte Hall of Fame Racing Chevrolet 203 0 Running
18 30 55 Michael Waltrip (W) Waltrip-Jasper Racing Dodge 203 0 Running
19 33 36 Bill Elliott (W) MB2 Motorsports Chevrolet 203 1 Running
20 42 27 Kirk Shelmerdine (R) Kirk Shelmerdine Racing Chevrolet 203 0 Running
21 29 49 Brent Sherman (R) BAM Racing Dodge 203 0 Running
22 34 22 Dave Blaney Bill Davis Racing Dodge 203 0 Running
23 4 5 Kyle Busch Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 203 5 Running
24 24 09 Mike Wallace Phoenix Racing Dodge 203 0 Running
25 31 61 Kevin Lepage Peak Fitness Racing Ford 203 1 Running
26 2 24 Jeff Gordon (W) Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 203 1 Running
27 40 32 Travis Kvapil PPI Motorsports Chevrolet 203 1 Running
28 32 40 David Stremme (R) Chip Ganassi Racing Dodge 203 0 Running
29 22 41 Reed Sorenson (R) Chip Ganassi Racing Dodge 203 0 Running
30 17 11 Denny Hamlin (R) Joe Gibbs Racing Chevrolet 203 0 Running
31 16 16 Greg Biffle Roush Racing Ford 203 1 Running
32 1 31 Jeff Burton Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 202 0 Flagged
33 38 01 Joe Nemechek MB2 Motorsports Chevrolet 200 0 Flagged
34 39 14 Sterling Marlin (W) MB2 Motorsports Chevrolet 200 0 Flagged
35 8 43 Bobby Labonte Petty Enterprises Dodge 197 0 Contact BS
36 26 19 Jeremy Mayfield Evernham Motorsports Dodge 197 0 Flagged
37 6 26 Jamie McMurray Roush Racing Ford 196 1 Contact BS
38 13 2 Kurt Busch Penske Racing Dodge 187 1 Contact BS
39 12 45 Kyle Petty Petty Enterprises Dodge 173 0 Flagged
40 41 00 Hermie Sadler (R) MBA Racing Ford 169 0 Engine
41 36 18 J. J. Yeley (R) Joe Gibbs Racing Chevrolet 157 0 Flagged
42 21 66 Jeff Green Haas CNC Racing Chevrolet 156 0 Flagged
43 5 99 Carl Edwards Roush Racing Ford 78 0 Contact T3
Did Not Qualify
10 Scott Riggs Evernham Motorsports Dodge
78 Kenny Wallace Furniture Row Racing Chevrolet
4 Scott Wimmer Morgan-McClure Motorsports Chevrolet
23 Mike Skinner Bill Davis Racing Dodge
74 Derrike Cope (W) McGlynn Racing Dodge
52 Larry Gunselman (R) Ware Racing Enterprises Dodge
37 Chad Blount (R) R&J Racing Dodge
50 Larry Foyt Arnold Motorsports Dodge
59 Andy Belmont (R) Andy Belmont Racing Chevrolet
64 Randy LaJoie Front Row Motorsports Chevrolet
89 Morgan Shepherd Victory Motorsports Dodge
92 Chad Chaffin (R) Front Row Motorsports Chevrolet
80 Carl Long (R) Hover Motorsports Ford
15 Paul Menard (R) Dale Earnhardt, Inc. Chevrolet
95 Stanton Barrett (R) Stanton Barrett Motorsports Chevrolet
  • (R) – Denotes driver making their first attempt at the Daytona 500
  • (W) – Denotes former Daytona 500 winner


  1. ^ a b "Weather of the 2006 Daytona 500". The Old Farmers' Almanac. Retrieved 2013-06-19. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g "2006 Daytona 500 - Racing-Reference.info". Racing-Reference.info. 
  3. ^ a b c d "NASCAR 2006 Daytona 500 Race Results". CBSSports.com. Retrieved 2015-11-29. 
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Nextel Cup Series
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