Denny Hamlin Holds Off Kyle Busch to Win 2019 Daytona 500 After 22-Car Wreck

Paul KasabianSenior ContributorFebruary 18, 2019

Denny Hamlin celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Daytona 500 auto race at Daytona International Speedway, Sunday, Feb. 17, 2019, in Daytona Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux)
John Raoux/Associated Press

Denny Hamlin won a chaotic Daytona 500 that featured a 22-car wreck amid other crashes at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida, on Sunday. 

No injuries were reported.

Hamlin, who won the Daytona 500 in 2016, held off his Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Kyle Busch for the victory. 

Here's a look at the top-10 standings, highlights and reaction from The Great American Race.

          

Standings (Top 10)

1. Denny Hamlin

2. Kyle Busch

3. Erik Jones

4. Joey Logano

5. Michael McDowell

6. Ty Dillon

7. Kyle Larson

8. Ryan Preece

9. Jimmie Johnson

10. Ross Chastain

Full standings can be found on NASCAR.com.

     

Highlights and Reaction

There were three main takeaways from this year's Daytona 500.

First, it was an emotional night for the Gibbs team just a month after J.D. Gibbs, co-owner of the group and the son of former Washington Redskins coach and fellow co-owner Joe Gibbs, died in January at the age of 49 because of a degenerative neurological disease.

The Gibbs team took the top three spots Sunday, with Erik Jones finishing third.

NASCAR on NBC caught Hamlin pointing post-race to a sticker honoring Gibbs, who was a big factor in bringing the two-time Daytona winner to the team:

Coach Gibbs also shared remarks on the Fox broadcast:

Second, numerous crashes marred an otherwise exciting race. Only four cars finished the race unscathed, per racing writer Jeff Gluck:

The aforementioned 22-car wreck with 10 laps remaining caught more than half the field:

Thankfully, everyone turned out to be OK, per the Fox broadcast.

Matt Weaver of Autoweek revealed the cause:

Performance Racing Network listed the drivers involved:

There were two more wrecks before the end of the race:

A 50th-lap wreck involving Kurt Busch, Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Jamie McMurray and Bubba Wallace was the big story in Stage 1:

Gluck provided a breakdown:

Nick DeGroot of Motorsport.com tweeted that Stenhouse was not to blame:

Matt Willis of ESPN.com noted there were 12 cautions and that just 14 cars were on the lead lap by the end of the race. Per NASCAR.com, there were two overtimes and two red flags as well.

Third, the action was intense, with many drivers taking chances and single-file racing the exception as opposed to the rule.

Jeff Gordon said during the broadcast that this year's Daytona was one of the best he's seen in "quite a while."

Dan Bernstein of Sporting News also offered praise: "This race has been a pleasant surprise to this point given concerns about boring, single-file racing. Drivers are taking more chances, opting to go into the bottom lane more than they did in qualifying."

The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series will now head to Atlanta for the Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 on Sunday.

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