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Michael McDowell wins Daytona 500

Michael McDowell celebrates after winning the NASCAR Daytona 500 auto race at Daytona...
Michael McDowell celebrates after winning the NASCAR Daytona 500 auto race at Daytona International Speedway, Monday, Feb. 15, 2021, in Daytona Beach, Fla.(Source: AP Photo/John Raoux)
Published: Feb. 15, 2021 at 3:07 PM EST
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(AP) - Michael McDowell won the Daytona 500 after Penske Racing teammates Joey Logano and Brad Keselowski wrecked on the final lap.

It was McDowell’s first victory in 358 Cup Series starts, a stunning upset in NASCAR’s signature event. McDowell led just one lap — the only that mattered.

McDowell was running third when Keselowski got a huge run on Logano. Keselowski tried to pass Logano on the low side, but Logano tried to block him and ended up crashing both of them.

Chase Elliott was second, followed by Austin Dillon, Kevin Harvick and Denny Hamlin.

Hamlin was trying to become the first in NASCAR history to win three consecutive Daytona 500s.

Brad Keselowski has no regrets about the way he handled the final lap of the Daytona 500.

Keselowski had a huge run on Team Penkse teammate and race leader Joey Logano about a mile from the finish line. Keselowski tried to pass Logano on the low side, but Logano blocked him and ended up crashing both of them.

Kyle Busch slammed into the side of Keselowski’s No. 2 Ford, sending it spinning and hitting the wall again. Austin Cindric plowed into both, creating a brief explosion and fire. Each driver escaped unscathed.

“Had a big run down the backstretch, wanted the make the pass to win the Daytona 500 and it ended up really bad,” Keselowski said. “Don’t feel like I made a mistake, but I can’t drive everyone else’s car. Frustrating. …

“We were in position. It’s exactly where I wanted to be — running second on the last lap of Daytona with this package. Had the run, made the move and it didn’t work out.”

Michael McDowell drove by both and got the win, his first in 358 Cup Series starts. It was a stunning upset in NASCAR’s signature event.

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