Harvick Edges Martin In Wild Daytona 500 Finish
Lots more pictures in the Daytona 500 Photo Gallery at the end of this page (scroll down).
DAYTONA BEACH, FL (February 18, 2007) -- Kevin Harvick (No. 29) nipped Mark Martin (No. 01) at the start/finish line to capture the 49th annual Daytona 500 – the closest Daytona 500 finish since the advent of computer scoring.
Harvick, who started seventh on the green-white-checkered finish, got drafting help on the outside from Matt Kenseth on the final lap and edged Martin at the start/finish line by less than a half a car length while a multi-car accident broke out behind.
“This is the Daytona 500, can you believe it?” Harvick said in Gatorade Victory Lane.
Martin, attempting to win his first Daytona 500 on his 23rd start, said the lack of drafting help coming off of Turn 4 proved the difference at the finish.
“When I looked up there at the end, I was minus any pushers,” Martin said. “I didn’t have any help to get it done and that’s the way it goes.”
Martin, competing in a part-time NEXTEL Cup schedule with Bobby Ginn Racing, was thrilled with the effort of the team that gave him an opportunity to win the Daytona 500.
“I want to say that I didn’t ask for a win in the Daytona 500; I asked for a chance,” Martin said. “Those guys gave me exactly what I asked for, and I let it slip away, slip through my fingers and I’m fine with that. I did my best.”
Harvick, whose previous best finish in the Daytona 500 was fourth in 2003 and 2004, beat Martin by .020 seconds, the closest in Daytona 500 finish since the advent of computer scoring in 1993 and the eighth closest in NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series overall.
Harvick’s victory was Richard Childress Racing’s first Daytona 500 win since Dale Earnhardt in 1998 and he also set a couple of Daytona 500 records in the process.
“It’s pretty incredible to be honest with you, to finally break that wall down and then win two days in a row, and then win the biggest race of the season,” Harvick said.
- His four laps led tied 1975 Daytona 500 champion Benny Parsons for the fewest laps led by a Daytona 500 winner.
- His starting position of 34th was the lowest starting position of a Daytona 500 winner.
- He became the fifth driver to win both the Daytona 500 and the Orbitz 300 NASCAR Busch Series in the same year.
“We’ve won the Brickyard 400 but I don’t think there’s anything that can match a Daytona 500 in stock car racing,” Harvick continued. “This is what it is, and this is as big as it gets. I’m just glad that we’re able to accomplish that.”
With 47 laps to go, two cars that appeared to be top contenders to win the Daytona 500 crashed. Tony Stewart’s No. 20 Home Depot Chevrolet got loose in Turn 4 and then was nudged by Kurt Busch’s No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge taking both cars out of the race.
Busch had led three times for 95 laps while Stewart led twice for 33 laps.
“It wasn’t meant to be today,” said an upbeat Stewart.
Academy Award-winning actor Nicolas Cage served as Grand Marshal for the Daytona 500 and delivered the starting command, “Gentlemen, start your engines.”
Said Cage before the race: “I really want to enjoy each and every one of those words. I want to take my time with that. Those are probably my favorite words in all of sports.”
Performing the NEXTEL Tribute To America was Kelly Clarkson, singing the national anthem was Big & Rich and serving as the Honorary Starter was Phil Parsons, brother of the late Benny Parsons.
See the Photo Gallery at the end of this page...
Race Results - click here (PDF)
Point Standings - click here (PDF)
Whirlwind Media Tour Follows Daytona 500 Win
DAYTONA BEACH, FL (February 18, 2007) – After a grueling and exciting 500 miles on Sunday, the 2007 Daytona 500 champion will add a few more miles to his itinerary as he takes a whirlwind media tour beginning on Monday.
Kevin Harvick, driver of the No. 29 Shell/Pennzoil Chevrolet, will celebrate his victory in Sunday’s “Great American Race” with several more media interviews including a few national television and radio appearances.
Monday’s scheduled appearances include the Daytona 500 Car Induction Ceremony at DAYTONA USA and then the Champions Breakfast, also at DAYTONA USA. ABC’s Good Morning America, ESPN’s Cold Pizza, The Morning Drive on Sirius Satellite Radio and the Late Show with David Letterman are all on Monday’s itinerary. Tuesday, it’s Live with Regis and Kelly, a luncheon with the New York media at the historic Waldorf Astoria and then off to Bristol, Conn., for interviews at ESPN’s headquarters. Wednesday, Harvick boards a plane and it’s wheels up to the West Coast and California Speedway day in Los Angeles and ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live. The whirlwind tour concludes on Thursday with the Rick Dees Radio Show and various other west coast television and radio morning shows.
*The Daytona 500 Champion schedule is subject to change
The Race: 49th Annual Daytona 500
The Place: Daytona International Speedway
The Date: Sunday, Feb. 18
Start Time: 4:15 p.m. (AT)
TV: FOX / TSN, 3 p.m. (AT) - see complete schedule below
Track Layout: 2.5-mile tri-oval
Distance: 500 miles (200 laps)
2006 Winner: Jimmie Johnson
2006 Pole: Jeff Burton
Final 2006 Points: click here (PDF)
Pre-Race On-Track Schedule: Wednesday—Practice, 12-12:55 p.m. and 2:05-2:55 p.m.; Thursday—Gatorade Duel at Daytona, 2 p.m.;
Friday—Practice, 1:40-2:40 p.m.; Saturday—Final Practice, 10:35-11:55 a.m.
Qualifying Time Trials: Sunday, February 11 (FOX at 3 p.m. AT, 2 p.m. ET)
Practice: Wednesday, February 14 (SPEED at Noon AT, 11 a.m. ET)
Practice: Wednesday, February 14 (SPEED at 3 p.m. AT, 2 p.m. ET)
Gatorade Duels Qualifying Races: Thursday, February 15 (SPEED at 2 p.m. AT, 1 p.m. ET)
Practice: Friday, February 16 (SPEED at 2:30 p.m. AT, 1:30 p.m. ET)
Final Practice: Saturday, February 17 (SPEED at 11:30 a.m. AT, 10:30 a.m. ET)
Pre-Race: Sunday, February 18 (SPEED at Noon AT, 11 a.m. ET)
Pre-Race: Sunday, February 18 (FOX at 3 p.m. AT, 2 p.m. ET)
Race: Sunday, February 18 (FOX at 4:15 p.m. AT, 3:15 ET)
Sirius Satellite Radio
Daytona 500 - Sunday, Feb. 18
Live race call provided by Motor Racing Network - channel 128
Pre-race show - 12:30 pm AT, 11:30 am ET
Race coverage - 3 pm AT, 2 pm ET
Green flag - 4:30 pm AT, 3:30 pm ET
2 hour post-race show
10 Driver2Crew Chatter(tm) channels:
Jimmie Johnson in-car audio - channel 122
Tony Stewart in-car audio - channel 126
Dale Earnhardt Jr. in-car audio - channel 125
Jeff Gordon in-car audio - channel 121
Kasey Kahne in-car audio - channel 114
Kevin Harvick in-car audio - channel 119
Matt Kenseth in-car audio - channel 130
Jeff Burton in-car audio - channel 147
Denny Hamlin in-car audio - channel 144
Ricky Rudd in-car audio (Fan's Choice) - channel 140
Setting the Daytona 500 Field
Daytona 500 Entry List (PDF)
Qualifying Format Could Leave Five Former 500 Champs Out of Race
Saturday, Feb. 10 - Practice 1 Speed Chart (PDF)
Saturday, Feb. 10 - Practice 2 Speed Chart (PDF)
Qualifying Order (PDF)
By the Numbers: Daytona 500 Budweiser Pole Qualifying (Advance)
Qualifying Time Trials Speed Chart Results (PDF)
Daytona 500 Front Row To Robert Yates Racing - includes photo gallery
NASCAR Confiscates Waltrip's Car; Kahne and Kenseth Times Disallowed
Four NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Crew Chiefs Suspended
Storylines Abound for Daytona 500
Wednesday, Feb. 14 - Practice 1 Speed Chart (PDF)
Wednesday, Feb. 14 - Practice 2 Speed Chart (PDF)
Waltrip Penalty Announced
Spotlight on David Gilliland
Gatorade Duel #1 Starting Lineup (PDF)
Gatorade Duel #2 Starting Lineup (PDF)
Stewart and Gordon Capture Wins in the Gatorade Duels
Gatorade Duel 1 Results (PDF)
Gatorade Duel 1 Results (PDF)
Post-Duel Transcripts with Stewart, Gordon, Waltrip and Earnhardt Jr.
Several New NASCAR Driver Ad Campaigns Debut During Speedweeks
Friday Feb. 16 Rudd, Biffle Top Practice Speed Chart (PDF)
Saturday Feb. 17 Final Practice Speed Chart (PDF) - Stremme "Wins"
Starting lineup for the Daytona 500 (PDF)
Point Standings (PDF)
Post-race transcripts from Harvick, Martin, Childress and Berrier.
Event Notes & Quotes
- Bob Welborn won the first NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series (Grand National) race at Daytona International Speedway, the 100-mile qualifying race for the inaugural Daytona 500 on Feb. 22, 1959.
- Lee Petty won the inaugural Daytona 500 on Feb. 22, 1959.
- Three drivers have won two straight Daytona 500s: Richard Petty (1973-74), Cale Yarborough (1983-84), Sterling Marlin (1994-95).
- Drivers who have won two straight races at Daytona International Speedway: Fireball Roberts (1962); Cale Yarborough (1967-68; 1976-77); LeeRoy Yarbrough (1969); Bobby Allison (1982; 1987-88); Jeff Gordon (1998-99; 2004-05); Dale Jarrett (1999-2000); Michael Waltrip (2002-03).
- Drivers who have won the Daytona 500 from the pole: Richard Petty (1966); Buddy Baker (1980); Cale Yarborough (1984); Bill Elliott (1985, 1987); Jeff Gordon (1999); Dale Jarrett (2000).
Daytona 500 Photo Gallery
- 2/18: Baseball star Cal Ripken Jr. will drive the pace car for the Daytona 500. The specially painted red, white and blue
2007 Corvette Z06 marks the 36th straight year that General Motors has provided the Official Pace Vehicle of the Daytona 500.
In his first pace car driver appearance, Ripken will be driving the fastest vehicle ever offered by Chevrolet and GM. The
Corvette Z06 has a top speed of 198 mph and will go from 0-60 in 3.7 seconds. The vehicle's 505-horsepower output is actually
more than the power produced by the race cars that will compete in the Daytona 500 due to the restrictor plate rule established
for the Daytona and Talladega, Ala. race tracks.
- 2/18: Here’s a quick stat fact for you...A list of the youngest drivers ever to win the Daytona 500...1) Jeff Gordon, 25 years,
6 months, 12 days - 1997 winner; 2) Richard Petty, 26 years, 7 months, 21 days - 1964 winner; 3) Mario Andretti, 26 years
11 months, 19 days - 1967 winner; 4) Jeff Gordon, 27 years 6 months, 11 days - 1999 winner; 5) Pete Hamilton, 27 years,
7 months, 2 days - 1970 winner.
- 2/18: Just one day before the "big event", Daytona International Speedway officials have announced all grandstand seats for
the 49th Annual Daytona 500 are sold out.
- 2/17: Jeff Burton has revised his opinion of the NASCAR penalty to Jeff Gordon's No. 24. Burton said he had convinced himself the
penalty was too lenient until he went to the NASCAR trailer and looked at the part/s in question. “And now it’s my opinion
that what happened to the 24 car was a screw-up." A bolt that holds the two elements of the shock mount structure together
was not properly tightened, allowing the bolt to work its way down to the bottom of the slotted bracket, leaving the car too low.
Burton felt that if it had been intentional, the team would have needed to create a way to allow the car to raise back to it's
proper level for post-race inspection. “When you look at the part it was beat up badly,” Burton said. “It seemed to be an honest
mistake. So the question is what should the penalty be? There has to be a penalty, and it seems to me the penalty met the crime.”
- 2/16: NASCAR inspectors have added to their collection of illegal parts during inspection. Among the new items added for
display at the NASCAR hauler are unapproved windshield braces have been confiscated from the No. 22 Toyota driven by Dave Blaney.
Unapproved probe heaters utilized in car’s transmissions were found on both Robert Yates Racing cars, the Nos. 38 and 88, driven
by David Gilliland and Ricky Rudd, respectively.
- 2/15: KYLE BUSCH, ON HIS "RELATIONSHIP" WITH DAYTONA: "This track and I have a love-hate relationship (LAUGHS). My rookie year we couldn't buy a break and wrecked almost every time out there. I couldn't find anyone to draft with me and I felt like I was just riding around twiddling my thumbs. You can have the best car, but if you can't find anyone to work with you, you're just out of luck. Last year we improved. We led some laps in the 500, but again couldn't hook up with anyone to stay up front. In the July race we redeemed ourselves. We finished second and it was like winning the race for us."
- 2/15: CASEY MEARS, DRIVER OF THE NO. 25 NATIONAL GUARD/GMAC CHEVROLET: (ON WHAT IT WILL TAKE TO SUCCEED IN THIS YEAR'S DAYTONA 500.)
"The key, initially, is to be patient -- especially now with the tire it looks like we're running. Based on the (Bud Shootout),
there's potential for it to be really hairy. You're really going to have to be extra patient and careful to get through the
first three-quarters of the race and set yourself up for a good finish. There are going to be times when you could probably
go to the front, but is it the right time and is it with the right person? Those are the kinds of things you have to sort
- 2/14 @ 4:29 p.m.: With today's first and second practice sessions complete, the question that begs to be asked is: Where's
Mikey? The No. 55 Toyota driven and owned by Michael Waltrip is not listed as having been on the track in either session.
NASCAR confiscated Waltrip's car after qualifying time trials on Sunday when they found oil in the intake manifold. The car
was sent to NASCAR R&D headquarters for further evaluation...ESPN is reporting that Waltrip's crew chief and Michael
Waltrip Racing's Director of Competition has been ejected from Daytona International Speedway. Penalties are
expected to be announced at a press conference later this afternoon. The speed charts are available in the Event News section above.
Accoring to NASCAR's Robin Pemberton Waltrip was allowed to practice Wednesday, but the team spent the whole day getting the
backup car ready to go through the inspection line - which is mandatory before going on track. The penalties were announced Wednesday
evening and they are among the most severe ever imposed by NASCAR. Click here for more.
- 2/14: The multi-platinum genre bending country music duo and Grammy nominated Big & Rich will perform the National Anthem for
the 49th annual Daytona 500 on Feb. 18 at historic Daytona International Speedway. (Big Kenny) and John Rich formed Big &
Rich in 1998 and the duo has released two chart-topping albums – “Horse Of A Different Color” and “Comin’ To Your City” – and
has another album due out by the middle of 2007. “We’re excited to add Big & Rich to the growing list of stars attending the
Daytona 500,” said Speedway President Robin Braig. “The Daytona 500 is ‘The Great American Race’ and we’re proud to have Big
& Rich sing the National Anthem before thousands of race fans and a nationally televised audience on FOX.” Also participating
in Daytona 500 pre-ceremonies will be actor Nicolas Cage as Grand Marshal, singer Kelly Clarkson in the NEXTEL Tribute
To America and baseball legend Cal Ripken Jr. as Daytona 500 pace car driver.
- 2/14: Phil Parsons, younger brother of 1975 Daytona 500 champion and 1973 NASCAR champion Benny Parsons, has been named
Honorary Starter for the 49th annual Daytona 500 on Sunday, Feb. 18 at Daytona International Speedway. Benny Parsons passed
away last month in Charlotte, N.C. after complications from cancer treatment. “Benny Parsons was a special member of the
Daytona International Speedway family and we’re honored to have his brother wave the green flag for Sunday’s Daytona 500,”
Daytona International Speedway President Robin Braig said. Benny Parsons was a member of the NASCAR’s 50 greatest drivers
and a winner of 21 races and 20 poles. After retiring from racing in 1988, Parsons excelled at broadcasting and spent the
past six years with NBC and TNT. Phil Parsons was also a NASCAR driver making 202 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series starts and
winning a NEXTEL Cup race in 1988 at Talladega Superspeedway. Parsons, who also won two NASCAR Busch Series races, now
serves as an analyst for SPEED Channel’s coverage of the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series.
- 2/9: BORIS SAID - HOW NERVE-WRACKING IS IT TRYING TO GET IN THE DAYTONA 500? “It sucks. It’s one of the hardest things
in racing now is to make these NASCAR Nextel Cup races. I’ve heard that there are 70 cars here this weekend, so if there is 70
that’s 35 people going for seven spots. I’ll go back to Indy last year, which was probably them most nerve-wracking thing I’ve
ever gone through. I was on the bubble for a little while and it came down to the last guy, who was faster than me in practice.
I’ll relate it to two movies. One is ‘My Dog Skip,’ where everybody is crying and sad and the old dog is dying. That’s how we
were in the trailer. It looked like our best friend just died. And then the minute we made the show 15 seconds later, it
turned into ‘Brokeback Mountain’ with guys slapping each other on the butts and hugging and kissing each other and telling
them we loved each other. It was such an emotional swing that day. It’s just really hard to go through it. I joke a lot
about Kenny Wallace because he was in the same boat all last year, but it’s really tough for these guys not in the top 35.
It’s a completely different program when you go to a race just to try to get in the show. It’s a character-builder and it’ll
make you tougher for the long haul.”
- 2/9: CLINT BOWYER - You have an incredible record at Daytona. How come you’re so good there? “A lot of luck. Any time
you go to a superspeedway, you have to have the talent and the equipment to get to the front but you need a lot of luck to
stay up there. I think I’ve earned some respect from a lot of these guys and that’s a big help when it’s time to make a
move and get to the front. I love plate racing. Even when things don’t go well and I’m mad and have a long flight home, I always find something to smile about when I think about the next plate race. It’s a lot of fun for me.”
Victory Lane was a busy spot for Kevin Harvick and team.
A team victory for Richard Childress Racing; Childress is in the black leather jacket.
Kevin Harvick celebrates his win with his wife Delana.
The start of the 49th Annual Daytona 500.
Kevin and Delana just prior to the start of the Daytona 500.
Mark Martin and Bobby Labonte share a laugh pre-race.
Singer Kelly Clarkson with Dale Earnhardt Jr.
Clarkson did the pre-race show.
Baseball legend Cal Ripken Jr. was the honourary pace car driver.
Movie star Nicholas Cage gave the command to start engines.
Thursday, Feb. 15 - Jeff Gordon won the second Gatorade Duel Qualifying Race but since his car failed post-race inspection he will start at the
rear of the Daytona 500 field. Click here for the Duel story.
Thursday, Feb. 15 - Tony Stewart won the first Gatorade Duel and will start third on the field for the Daytona 500. Click here for the Duel story.
Sunday, Feb. 12 - Robert Yates Racing drivers David Gilliland (right) will start first and Ricky Rudd (left) will start second for the Daytona 500;
locking in their spots with the fastest two laps in Sunday's qualifying time trials. Click on the picture for the rest of the story and more
IMPORTANT: All information, schedules and/or scheduled events is/are subject to change without notice. Please
check with the source to confirm.
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