No. 12 BODYARMOR Ford Mustang – Ryan Blaney
Stage 1: 14th
Stage 2: 6th
Finish: 1st – 7th-career NASCAR Cup Series win
Laps Completed: 165/165
Laps Led: 7
Playoff Point Standings (behind first): 2nd (-28)
- Ryan Blaney continued his recent hot streak in the NASCAR Cup Series on Saturday night by avoiding several multi-car accidents and winning the Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona International Speedway. It was Blaney’s third win of the season and second-consecutive victory after capturing the win last week at Michigan.
- Blaney ran competitively in the opening laps of the race before pitting at the lap 20 competition caution for a fuel only stop. Blaney continued to battle a loose Ford Mustang, reporting he was also struggling to stay connected to the cars in front of him, finishing Stage 1 in the 14th position.
- During the second stage, Blaney was able to work his way forward with the help of his fellow Ford Performance Mustangs, battling for the lead with teammate Joey Logano near the conclusion of the segment. Blaney ultimately finished Stage 2 in the sixth position, scoring valuable points in his tight battle for playoff points at the conclusion of the regular season.
- Blaney would grab the lead during the final stage before pitting for a potential final stop for fuel only at lap 124 with the remainder of the Ford Performance contingent. A caution flag at lap 140 would allow the Ford’s who had pitted to cycle to the front of the field as the remainder of the lead lap cars had yet to hit pit lane.
- In the closing laps, Blaney would miss multiple “big ones,” all while using masterful restarts and big pushes from the cars behind him to keep his BODYARMOR Ford Mustang up front. On the white flag lap, Blaney was once again out front when a crash happened behind him, forcing officials to thrown the yellow and checkered flag.
- The consecutive wins vaulted Blaney to second in the NASCAR Cup Series Playoff standings heading into next week’s race at Darlington.
Quote: “It was wild. We missed that big one barely. I don’t know how we missed it and then we got a restart on the front row and it was kind of a drag race. I’m really thankful to LaJoie, who gave me a really good push and we were able to get clear on the restart, so I appreciate the push from him. I was having to hold off the 4 and the 17 and the 7 and I didn’t really know which lane to go with down the back, so I kind of picked the middle and I kind of committed to the bottom and I guess some people got turned, but what a couple of cool weeks that’s for sure. It was a very eventful race. It’s so cool to be here in victory lane in Daytona. Maybe we’re on a roll right now and we’ve got everything going our way. Hopefully, we keep it up.”