2007 Pepsi 400
|Race 18 of 36 in the 2007 NASCAR Nextel Cup Series season|
Track map of Daytona International Speedway showing mainly the speedway.
|Date||July 7, 2007|
|Official name||Pepsi 400|
|Location||Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida.|
|Course||Permanent racing facility
2.5 mi (4 km)
|Distance||160 laps, 400 mi (643.737 km)|
|Weather||Temperatures reaching up to 93.9 °F (34.4 °C); wind speeds approaching 13.0 miles per hour (20.9 km/h)|
|Average speed||138.983 miles per hour (223.671 km/h)|
|Time||2007 Owner's Points|
|Most laps led|
|Driver||Clint Bowyer||Richard Childress Racing|
|No. 26||Jamie McMurray||Roush Fenway Racing|
|Television in the United States|
|Network||Turner Network Television|
|Announcers||Bill Weber, Wally Dallenbach, Jr. and Kyle Petty|
Boris Said was on the pole with 14 cars left to qualify until a rainstorm stopped qualifying. Eventually, it was cancelled outright, sending the drivers of three of the six fastest cars at the time home. The others were Jeremy Mayfield and Michael Waltrip.
All times that were recorded were eliminated, and the starting lineup was set according to the NASCAR rule book. The pole sitter was Jeff Gordon, and Denny Hamlin sat on the outside. Ironically, this was the reverse of the previous week's finishing running order.
It was the first time in the speedway's history that a qualifying session was not completed, covering a total of 97 races. As a result of what happened, on January 21, 2008, NASCAR changed the rules that put those not in the Top 35 Owners' Points into a separate session in order to make the race, also called "The Boris Said Rule".
Jamie McMurray and Kyle Busch created one of the most memorable finishes, running side-by-side for nearly 32 laps. McMurray defeated Busch to win the Pepsi 400 and claim his second victory and end a 166-race winless streak that had spanned since 2002, when he won in only his second start while subbing for Sterling Marlin. The final margin of victory was .005 seconds, tied for the second-closest margin in NASCAR history since electronic scoring and timing was adopted in 1993. The other Top 5 finishers were Kurt Busch in 3rd, Carl Edwards in 4th, and Jeff Gordon in 5th.
As at the Daytona 500, some of the sport's biggest stars struggled. Kevin Harvick finished 34th while Dale Earnhardt, Jr., Tony Stewart, and Denny Hamlin finished 36th, 38th, and 43rd respectively. Despite the fact there were many incidents throughout the race, most were relatively minor and the "Big One" never happened.
Top 10 results
|1||26||Jamie McMurray||Ford||Roush Fenway Racing|
|2||5||Kyle Busch||Chevrolet||Hendrick Motorsports|
|3||2||Kurt Busch||Dodge||Penske Racing|
|4||99||Carl Edwards||Ford||Roush Fenway Racing|
|5||24||Jeff Gordon||Chevrolet||Hendrick Motorsports|
|6||16||Greg Biffle||Ford||Roush Fenway Racing|
|7||07||Clint Bowyer||Chevrolet||Richard Childress Racing|
|8||17||Matt Kenseth||Ford||Roush Fenway Racing|
|9||9||Kasey Kahne||Dodge||Evernham Motorsports|
|10||48||Jimmie Johnson||Chevrolet||Hendrick Motorsports|
- Kyle Busch missed, by the slimmest of margins, being the first driver to win a Busch Series and a NEXTEL Cup Series race on the same day. That morning, he had won the Winn-Dixie 250, postponed from Friday night because of rain.
- TNT presented the telecast in a "Wide Open" format, in which full-screen commercial breaks were replaced by ads and short films that showed on one corner of the screen. The running order of the cars was always available on the broadcast, and it was complemented by enhanced statistics and updates.
- For the first time since 1965, no one from the Petty family was in the starting lineup for a race at Daytona. Kyle Petty was instead a broadcaster for TNT, and John Andretti took his place in the starting lineup.
- This was the last race which combined the older-design cars with restrictor plates. The next such race, the 2007 UAW-Ford 500 at Talladega Superspeedway, used the Car of Tomorrow, as will all races in 2008.
- Two days after this race, International Speedway Corporation, which owns DIS, signed a multi-year deal with Coca-Cola to sell beverages at all its tracks. That meant that this race would be renamed the Coke Zero 400 as of 2008.
- Interesting side note: the race was held on July 7, 2007 (07/07/07) and Clint Bowyer drove the 07 car to a seventh-place finish that night.
- Weather information at The Old Farmers' Almanac