Jimmie Johnson wins Coca-Cola 400, first NASCAR drive to sweep Daytona since 1982

  • Article by: JENNA FRYER , Associated Press
  • Updated: July 9, 2013 - 12:13 AM
hide

Denny Hamlin (11) hit the wall as he wrecked with A J Allmendinger, back, and Dave Blaney (7) as Greg Biffle (16) drove past at Daytona International Speedway on Saturday night.

– A flawless race gave Jimmie Johnson a perfect year at Daytona International Speedway and put him on another exclusive list.

Johnson became the first driver in 31 years to sweep Daytona International Speedway, accomplishing the feat with a dominating run Saturday night for his fourth win of the season. The Daytona 500 winner is the first driver since Bobby Allison in 1982, and the fifth overall, to win both races in a season at Daytona.

“I don’t think I made a bad move tonight. I’m pretty proud of that,” Johnson said. “Gosh, growing up in Southern California and watching Bobby Allison ... to do anything Bobby has done is pretty special.”

The five-time NASCAR champion was the leader on the restart for a two-lap sprint to the finish in overtime Saturday night. He held off Kevin Harvick on the restart, and then pulled out front to a sizeable lead. Tony Stewart moved into second and may have been timing his attempt to make a pass for the lead when a caution in the middle of the pack froze the field.

“We knew it was coming,” Johnson said of the late accident. “Getting down to the end of these things, we knew it was going to get exciting.”

Stewart was second, followed by Kevin Harvick in a Chevrolet sweep. Both thought Johnson’s fast car, once able to get out front, was untouchable. He led 94 of the 161 laps.

“These things are such a crapshoot ... all 43 guys have a shot at winning the race,” Stewart said. “They definitely had a fast car. I mean, they had a fast car at the 500, they had a fast car here, so it makes sense.”

Harvick thought the outcome would have been different if anyone had been able to get a push past Johnson.

“I think we could have done the same thing in clean air,” Harvick said. “I think the front car is in a lot better control.”

Clint Bowyer was fourth and team co-owner Michael Waltrip fifth in a pair of Toyotas. Then came Kurt Busch, Jamie McMurray and Dale Earnhardt Jr. as Chevrolets took six of the top eight spots and seven of the top 10.

Casey Mears was ninth in a Ford, followed by Ryan Newman. But NASCAR was reviewing the finishing order long after the race ended.

The race was stopped for almost nine minutes for a six-car accident with 11 laps remaining that included yet another vicious hit for Denny Hamlin.

Hamlin’s car inexplicably turned right and spun hard into the frontstretch wall. It then turned back into traffic and Hamlin was tagged hard by AJ Allmendinger in a hit that caused his car to lift off the ground.

Both he and Allmendinger had to collect themselves after climbing from their wrecked cars, but both were evaluated and released from the infield care center. Hamlin missed four races earlier this season with a compression fracture in a vertebra in his lower back, and took a hard hit last Sunday at Kentucky.

He tested Monday at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, but had to be evaluated by a doctor on site before he got in the car. And his race-ending accident came after he had climbed back from a lap down from an earlier incident involving fellow Toyota driver Martin Truex Jr.

Also involved in the late accident with Hamlin and Allmendinger were Matt Kenseth, Hamlin’s Joe Gibbs Racing teammate, and Jeff Gordon.

“I saw the wreck and tried to slow down and miss it, but just not much I could do,” Kenseth said.

The race resumed with seven laps remaining and Johnson leading teammate Kasey Kahne. Johnson then made a strange move to the high line to block Marcos Ambrose and it might have cost him the race as it put Kahne out front in the bottom lane of traffic.

But as the two Hendrick drivers drag-raced around Daytona, Ambrose clipped the side of Johnson as he attempted a sudden lane change. He slammed into the side of Kahne, causing Kahne to spin and hit an inside retaining wall for another caution with five laps remaining.

“Jimmie got a little loose or he just didn’t see my move coming, and I split him coming off of (turn) two,” Ambrose said. “He came down to check the spot and I was already there and he just bounced us straight into (Kahne).”

Kahne angrily tossed his head-and-neck restraint into his car after climbing from the wreckage.

The race resumed in overtime with Johnson leading Harvick, Bowyer, Stewart and McMurray. He wasn’t challenged as neither Stewart nor Harvick could make a move before the race-ending caution.

“Jimmie just was good,” Stewart said. “Jimmie was just really, really good. We were just a little bit off of him.”

Added Harvick: “I really thought we were in the right spot. ... Our line just never developed. I’m a little disappointed because I really thought we were in the right spot.”

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Houston 2 FINAL
St. Louis 5
Washington 9 FINAL
Atlanta 8
Miami 5 FINAL
Boston 3
Minnesota 1 FINAL
Tampa Bay 2
NY Yankees 4 FINAL
Philadelphia 1
Baltimore 4 FINAL
Toronto 5
Detroit - LP: J. Mantiply 4 FINAL
NY Mets - WP: C. Torres 5
Cincinnati 5 Bottom 7th Inning
Chicago Cubs 1
Los Angeles 9 Bottom 7th Inning
Milwaukee 0
San Francisco 9 Top 8th Inning
Texas 0
Chicago WSox 0 Bottom 7th Inning
San Diego 5
Kansas City 11 Bottom 6th Inning
Cleveland 5
Seattle 4 Bottom 8th Inning
Los Angeles 7
Colorado 0 Top 8th Inning
LA Angels 3
Oakland 4 Top 6th Inning
Arizona 1
Pittsburgh 6:05 PM
NY Yankees
Chicago 6:00 PM
Indiana
Sacramento 6:00 PM
Orlando
Utah 6:00 PM
Philadelphia
Miami 6:00 PM
Washington
Toronto 6:00 PM
Charlotte
Cleveland 6:30 PM
Atlanta
Boston 7:00 PM
New Orleans
Detroit 7:00 PM
Houston
LA Lakers 7:00 PM
Memphis
Phoenix 7:00 PM
Brooklyn
Denver 7:30 PM
San Antonio
Dallas 9:30 PM
Golden State
Columbus 6:00 PM
New Jersey
Minnesota 6:00 PM
Carolina
Buffalo 6:30 PM
Ottawa
Calgary 6:30 PM
Detroit
Edmonton 7:30 PM
Chicago
Pittsburgh 9:00 PM
Anaheim
Longwood 68 FINAL
Char Southern 60
Ark-Pine Bluff 94 FINAL
Miss Valley St 75
Southern Ill 45 FINAL
Wichita State 56
Winthrop 67 FINAL
Radford 66
Evansville 57 2nd Half 4:13
Illinois State 59
Towson 5:00 PM
Elon
Gardner-Webb 5:00 PM
High Point
Samford 5:00 PM
UNC Greensboro
Northern Ill 6:00 PM
Ball State
Bowling Green 6:00 PM
Buffalo
Brown 6:00 PM
Dartmouth
Toledo 6:00 PM
Eastern Mich
Akron 6:00 PM
Kent State
Ill-Chicago 6:00 PM
Oakland
Miami-Ohio 6:00 PM
Ohio
Columbia 6:00 PM
Penn
Cornell 6:00 PM
Princeton
Central Mich 6:00 PM
Western Mich
Bradley 6:05 PM
Northern Iowa
Morehead State 6:30 PM
Murray State
UNC-Asheville 7:00 PM
Coastal Carolina
Yale 7:00 PM
Harvard
Furman 7:30 PM
Citadel
Coll of Charleston 7:30 PM
Drexel
Texas Tech 8:00 PM
Baylor
Pacific 8:00 PM
San Francisco
Detroit 8:30 PM
Cleveland State
Belmont 8:30 PM
Eastern Ky
Loyola-Chicago 8:35 PM
Indiana State
Loyola Marymount 10:30 PM
Santa Clara
Chicago 9:00 PM
Los Angeles
Saint Louis 63 FINAL
(21) George Washington 77
Wake Forest 68 FINAL
(16) Duke 77
Furman 55 FINAL
(17) Chattanooga 68
Monmouth 61 FINAL
Quinnipiac 82
Michigan State 60 FINAL
(4) Maryland 70
Belmont 65 FINAL
UT Martin 71
Arkansas 36 FINAL
(3) South Carolina 58
Mercer 56 FINAL
East Tenn St 66
Richmond 45 FINAL
Fordham 46
Miami-Florida 61 FINAL
(2) Notre Dame 77
Siena 61 FINAL
Iona 71
Washington St 48 FINAL
(9) Arizona State 67
Ark-Pine Bluff 63 FINAL
Miss Valley St 51
(23) Rutgers 57 FINAL
(24) Northwestern 62
Tennessee St 71 FINAL
SIU-Edwardsville 59
Loyola Marymount 50 FINAL
Gonzaga 70
(18) Texas A&M 65 FINAL
LSU 71
Cincinnati 68 2nd Half 2:11
UCF 55
Saint Josephs 33 2nd Half
Dayton 44
UCLA 17 1st Half 7:48
(19) Stanford 20
Santa Clara 7 1st Half 13:57
San Diego 7
Virginia Tech 5:00 PM
(7) Florida State
SMU 5:00 PM
Memphis
Lehigh 5:05 PM
Holy Cross
Rhode Island 6:00 PM
Duquesne
North Florida 6:00 PM
(20) Fla Gulf Coast
Kennesaw St 6:00 PM
Jacksonville
USC Upstate 6:00 PM
Northern Ky
Lipscomb 6:00 PM
Stetson
Nebraska 6:00 PM
(14) Iowa
Saint Peters 6:00 PM
Marist
Navy 6:00 PM
Bucknell
Lafayette 6:00 PM
American Univ
Colgate 6:00 PM
Army
Georgia 6:00 PM
(5) Tennessee
Dartmouth 6:00 PM
Brown
Penn 6:00 PM
Columbia
(13) Princeton 6:00 PM
Cornell
Kansas 6:00 PM
Kansas State
Harvard 6:00 PM
Yale
(15) North Carolina 7:00 PM
(10) Louisville
San Jose St 7:00 PM
UNLV
Houston 7:00 PM
Tulane
Utah State 8:00 PM
Colorado State
Colorado 8:00 PM
(8) Oregon State
New Mexico 8:00 PM
Wyoming
Minnesota 8:25 PM
Ohio State
(12) Kentucky 8:25 PM
(11) Miss State
San Diego State 8:30 PM
Nevada
Niagara 8:30 PM
Fairfield
Texas Tech 8:30 PM
West Virginia
Boise State 9:00 PM
Fresno State
Washington 10:30 PM
California
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close