Christopher Bell Claims His First NASCAR Cup Series Win on the Daytona Road Course
Christopher Bell spent his first season in the NASCAR Cup Series last season gaining experience and logging laps. This season, he has moved over to the No. 20 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota Camry after spending 2020 with Leavine Family Racing. In just his second start behind the wheel of the No. 20, Christopher Bell has found victory lane. Christopher Bell took the checkered flag in the NASCAR Cup Series O’Reilly Auto Parts 253 on the Daytona International Speedway road course. Finishing second was Joey Logano, who held the lead until Bell made his move coming to the white flag. With the win, Bell becomes the second first time winner of the weekend, complementing Ty Gibbs’ win yesterday. Both drivers come from the Joe Gibbs Racing stable of drivers.
After taking the checkered flag, Bell commented on his win by saying, “This is definitely one of the highlights of my life. I’m just so thankful to be here. I feel like I’ve prepared my whole life for this moment. Last year was a learning curve for me, and I’m just grateful for the opportunity to run in the Cup Series.” Denny Hamlin finished in third place Sunday, while Kurt Busch rallied from an early of course excursion to finish fourth. Former champions Brad Keselowski and Kevin Harvick finished in fifth and sixth, while A.J. Allmendinger drove to a seventh place finish for Kaulig Racing. Last weekend’s Daytona 500 winner Michael McDowell finished in eighth and Ryan Preece finished inside the top ten in ninth. Rounding out the top ten was Hendrick Motorsports driver Alex Bowman.
Chase Elliott Dominates, But Could Not Close
As he has done in many of the recent road course races, Chase Elliott dominated the race Sunday. Elliott led 44 laps Sunday, the most of any driver. However, a late race caution would end his chances for the win. Starting well outside of the top ten, Elliott was forced to claw his way towards the front. With twelve laps to go, Elliott was forced wide coming out of the first horseshoe turn, resulting in him losing numerous positions. After Tyler Reddick brought out another caution, Chase found his way to the top five once racing resumed. However, with six laps to go, Elliott would dive under Brad Keselowski for position entering the turn that leads back onto the super-speedway. Denny Hamlin ran into the back of Elliott, sending him spinning and relegating him to a 21st place finish.
The Dixie Vodka 400 at the Homestead-Miami Speedway is the next round of the 2021 NASCAR Cup Series championship. Fans can view the race on Sunday, February 28th at 3:30 p.m. ET on FOX, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio.
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