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Team Interstate shows muscle – and heartbreak – in Daytona

February 25th, 2013 by
A familiar sight Sunday: Team Interstate up front at Daytona.

A familiar sight Sunday: Team Interstate up front at Daytona. Copyright 2013 Autostock Images.

Team Interstate™ showed its muscle early in Sunday’s Daytona 500, but a promising run ended too early for Matt Kenseth and Kyle Busch.

With just over 50 laps remaining in the Great American Race, Team Interstate appeared set for a historic finish with all three cars running 1-2-3 and having lead a majority of the day. Unfortunately, engine problems would leave Busch and Kenseth to finish 34th and 37th respectively, while Denny Hamlin got stuck in a slow bottom lane during the race’s final laps and finished 14th.

Interstate Batteries Chairman Norm Miller and Coach Joe Gibbs spent much of Daytona 500 weekend trackside. Copyright 2013 Autostock Images.

Interstate Batteries Chairman Norm Miller and Coach Joe Gibbs spent much of Daytona 500 weekend trackside. Copyright 2013 Autostock Images.

“Just broke something inside the motor,” said Busch, who won at Daytona in July 2008. “There are pieces that are supposed to stay together, and they didn’t stay together. I hate it for this whole M&M’s team. All of the guys at JGR (Joe Gibbs Racing) built an awesome piece. All three of us have been fast since we’ve been down here.”

Jimmie Johnson won the Daytona 500, his second victory in the historic race. Danica Patrick, the first woman to start from the pole at Daytona, finished eighth, the highest finish for a woman ever at Daytona.

Nationwide: Fans injured in scary crash

An awful crash near the finish line of the Nationwide Series race at Daytona left 28 fans injured when a tire and other pieces of a car flew into the stands. All drivers involved escaped without serious injury, but seven fans remain in the hospital. Watch the video of the crash below, from ESPN:

Here’s an update on the injured fans from this morning:

NHRA ProStock: Edwards finishes second

Mike Edwards and the Interstate Batteries®/I Am Second/K&N Chevy team nearly made it a clean sweep, but in the final round fell just short to Erica Enders-Stevens in the NHRA Arizona Nationals final.

“I am disappointed I did not get this Camaro into the winner’s circle,” Edwards said. “It is tough when you know you have the best car on the property and don’t win. I am just proud that we bounced back from the Pomona first-round loss and made it to the final. Now we have a few weeks to work on the car and make it even better.”

Edwards qualified No. 1 for the second straight event, and 43rd of his career, and fifth straight at the Arizona facility.

“We are excited about moving forward and seeing how much better we can get,” Edwards said. “It is back home to Oklahoma for a few days and then out testing heavy to get ready for Gainesville.”

Supercross: Brayton Recovers from Crash

 

Team Interstate's Justin Brayton grabs some air in Atlanta. Photo by Vitalmx.

Team Interstate’s Justin Brayton grabs some air in Atlanta. Photo by Vitalmx.

Kyle Chisholm and Justin Brayton hoped their stop in Atlanta would jump-start their season. Unfortunately, Chisholm suffered a crash in his heat race and didn’t make the main event, and Brayton crashed early in the main.

Chisholm is substituting for Josh Grant, who injured his shoulder and ankle at the third Anaheim event. Grant is likely to miss the rest of the Supercross season.

Brayton began the main event inside the top five and was in a heated battle on the second lap when a wreck left him on the ground and in last place. Unhurt, he restarted his Yamaha YZ450F and rejoined the race with a lot of distance between him and the pack. Brayton made the most of the remaining time he had to move up to 13th at the checkers.

Next week: NASCAR visits the 1-mile track in Phoenix, and the Monster Energy AMA Supercross Series heads to St. Louis. NHRA drag racing resumes March 14 in Gainesville, Fla.

By James Pecht (177 Posts)

James Pecht writes about franchising, battery technology, tips, racing and company culture for Interstate Batteries.


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