The Big One at Daytona 500 Collects 23 Cars

Jackson Wheeler
4 Min Read


  • Not every driver who was involved in the massive crash was eliminated from the 200-lap event at Daytona International Speedway.
  • The race was stopped for 15 minutes 27 seconds while the track was cleared.
  • Joey Logano, the race’s top lap leader with 45 laps led on five occasions, summed up the crash in three words: “Speedway racing again.”

Pushing is status quo in superspeedway racing, but with eight laps remaining in Monday night’s rain-delayed Daytona 500 a push at the front of the field went terribly wrong, triggering a 23-car crash.

Ironically, it was eventual winner William Byron who clipped Brad Keselowski in the Ford Mustang Dark Horse’s right rear and turned him into the outside line after receiving a push from Hendrick Motorsports teammate Alex Bowman, who finished second. They were racing for the lead with Keselowski and pole position winner Joey Logano when the melee occurred.

Others involved in the “big one” were Austin Cindric, Kyle Larson, Chase Elliott, Noah Gragson, Denny Hamlin, Ryan Blaney, Chase Briscoe, Chris Buescher, Martin Truex Jr., Christopher Bell, Daniel Hemric, Todd Gilliland, Ryan Preece, Erik Jones, Tyler Reddick, Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Ty Gibbs, Anthony Alfredo, and Daniel Suarez.

The race was stopped for 15 minutes 27 seconds while the track was cleared.

Not every driver who was involved in the massive crash was eliminated from the 200-lap event at Daytona International Speedway. Bell finished third, Jones eighth, Gragson ninth and Briscoe 10th.

“The pushes are stupid the whole time,” Logano said after being released from the infield care center. “The whole thing – everybody just gets more and more intense. You know it’s gonna happen. Anyone can see it happening. It happens every year. With 10 to go, there’s gonna be a caution. You just hope you’re not in it. It’s usually the people that start the wreck that stay alive. That’s the frustrating part.”

Logano, the race’s top lap leader with 45 laps led on five occasions, summed up the crash in three words: “Speedway racing again.”

“I kind of thought I had the cars I wanted around me,” Logano said. “I had at least one I wanted around me, but just couldn’t make it work. I had Blaney behind me. I thought, ‘Man, if I could pick one, that’s the one I want. I’m in a great position here’ and just had to find the right opportunity to slip the 1 (Ross Chastain) again because the 6 (Keselowski) wasn’t working with us, so I felt if I could keep the 12 (Blaney) with me I’m gonna be in a decent spot, but it just didn’t work out.

“The wreck always starts in the front, and you hope you’re in front of it. Second place isn’t far enough ahead.”

Buescher described the Daytona 500 as “one of the most frustrating races I have been a part of in a long time.”

“Tons of fuel saving, and it was all about the pit stop, one pit stop for every stage and then some massive blocks by single cars that weren’t up to speed,” Buescher said.

Keselowski led twice for three laps. Others involved in the crash who led during the event at the 2.5-mile track were Bell, Gilliland, Cindric, Elliott, Blaney, Hamlin, Larson, Gragson and Suarez.

Overall, there were 41 lead changes among 20 drivers, and five caution flags for 20 laps.

Share This Article
Follow:
Jackson Wheeler is a skilled editor at Speedofdaily.com, specializing in automotive content. With a background in Journalism and Automotive Engineering, he combines his passion for cars with his writing expertise to deliver captivating articles. Jackson's deep knowledge of automotive technology and his racing experience make him a valuable asset to the team, providing readers with informative and engaging content.
Leave a comment