Ryan Reed scores first career Xfinity Series win with last-lap pass at Daytona (VIDEO)

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Four years after being diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes and told he would never race again, Ryan Reed is now a winner in the NASCAR Xfinity Series.

Even better, his first win has come on NASCAR’s biggest stage.

Reed blew by Brad Keselowski on the final lap and then held off Roush Fenway Racing teammate Chris Buescher to win the season-opening Alert Today Florida 300 at Daytona International Speedway. It’s not only Reed’s first career Xfinity win, but also the first Xfinity win ever for the Roush team at the “World Center of Racing.”

A wild final lap started with Brad Keselowski leading the way. Then, going into Turn 1, Kyle Larson charged on the outside but appeared to be tapped from behind by Aric Almirola and was sent spinning into Ross Chastain.

While Larson and Chastain went into the grass, Keselowski got out to a big lead – but became a sitting duck for it. Reed was pushed down the backstretch by Buescher, enabling Reed to pass Keselowski on the inside of Turn 3 while Buescher got around Keselowski in Turn 4.

Buescher then moved inside to try and reel in Reed, but ran out of time.

“Oh my God, we’ve won Daytona!,” Reed exclaimed in Victory Lane to Fox Sports 1. “This is not only for me and my family, but every kid that gets diagnosed with diabetes – or anything that says you can’t do something. Just go out there, overcome it, win it, and do the best you can.

“We got shuffled back there with like three to go and I was like, ‘Alright, our race is done – just salvage.’ And when the wreck broke out on the last lap, Keselowski was left on an island. We got a massive run and we set it up for a victory.”

As for Keselowski, he said that something happened with Almirola exiting Turn 2 to cause the gap on the final lap.

“I couldn’t react fast enough to that to try and stay with the field,” Keselowski said. “I drove away from them and they went rubber band on us. The 16 [Reed] and the 60 [Buescher] got a great run with some really smart drafting and flung by us. That was just the way the cards were dealt.”

Almirola would later confirm that he suffered a tire rub following the Larson contact and then lost his right-rear tire.

Brothers Ty and Austin Dillon finished third and fourth respectively, while Keselowski fell back to fifth at the finish. David Starr, Almirola, Larson, Chastain, and Dale Earnhardt Jr. completed the Top 10.

The first 80 laps of the race ran caution free, but things soon turned dicey with two major crashes in the final third of the 120-lap event.

With 27 laps remaining, contact between Larson and the lapped car of rookie Daniel Suarez sent the latter spinning into defending race winner Regan Smith. Smith was flipped over before landing right-side up and took hits from Scott Lagasse Jr. and Brendan Gaughan before coming to a stop (Smith would walk away under his own power). More than 10 cars were involved in the incident.

Then with less than 10 laps to go, another Big One ensued coming out of the tri-oval when Kyle Busch made contact with his Camping World Truck Series driver Erik Jones. Jones spun out, and Busch then bounced off Larson’s machine before going hard left and smashing into an inside retaining wall.

Busch climbed out of his car but then went to the grass where he was tended to by medical teams. After being put on a stretcher with a protective sleeve over his right leg, an awake and alert Busch was taken via ambulance to Halifax Medical Center for further evaluation.

Busch has since been ruled out of tomorrow’s Daytona 500 after suffering a injury to that right leg. When we have more details on his condition, we will pass it along to you.

NASCAR Xfinity Series – Alert Today Florida 300 at Daytona
Unofficial Results

1. Ryan Reed … 120 laps … $128,770
2. Chris Buescher … 120 laps … $101,035
3. Ty Dillon … 120 laps … $82,710
4. Austin Dillon … 120 laps … $74,735
5. Brad Keselowski … 120 laps … $64,245
6. David Starr … 120 laps … $67,520
7. Aric Almirola … 120 laps … $57,820
8. Kyle Larson … 120 laps … $57,745
9. Ross Chastain … 120 laps … $61,495
10. Dale Earnhardt Jr. … 119 laps … $55,445
11. Dakoda Armstrong … 119 laps … $59,445
12. Darrell Wallace Jr. … 119 laps .. $59,070
13. Mike Wallace … 119 laps … $52,595
14. Jeremy Clements … 118 laps … $58,270
15. Mario Gosselin … 118 laps … $58,570
16. Jeffrey Earnhardt … 118 laps … $57,670
17. Eric McClure … 116 laps … $57,420
18. Erik Jones … 116 laps … $57,295
19. Elliott Sadler … 116 laps … $57,145
20. Blake Koch … 115 laps… $57,520
21. Chris Cockrum … 115 laps … $56,895
22. Derek White … 115 laps … $56,765
23. Josh Reaume … 115 laps … $50,590
24. Mike Harmon … 114 laps … $56,465
25. Brian Scott … 112 laps … $56,465
26. Kyle Busch … 111 laps … $52,690 … Accident
27. J.J. Yeley … 111 laps … $56,090 … Accident
28. Chase Elliott … 111 laps … $56,990 … Accident
29. Brendan Gaughan … 110 laps … $55,990 … Accident
30. Cale Conley … 110 laps … $56,065
31. Landon Cassill … 108 laps … $55,590
32. Joey Gase … 107 laps … $55,495
33. John Wes Townley … 106 laps … $55,445
34. Justin Marks … 93 laps … $55,640 … Accident
35. Regan Smith … 93 laps … $55,224 … Accident
36. Chad Boat … 92 laps … $45,650 … Accident
37. Scott Lagasse, Jr. … 92 laps … $50,500 … Accident
38. Ryan Sieg … 92 laps … $49,500 … Accident
39. Daniel Suarez … 91 laps … $48,500 … Accident
40. Dexter Bean … 5 laps … $41,500 … Fuel Pump

Time of race: 2 hours, 0 minutes, 59 seconds.
Margin of victory: 0.089 seconds
Average speed: 148.781 mph
Cautions: 4 for 17 laps
Lead Changes: 24 among 9 drivers
Laps Led: Busch 27, Wallace 18, Ty Dillon 16, Smith 15, Reed 14, Keselowski 13, Buescher 12, Larson 4, Austin Dillon 1.

North Wilkesboro’s worn surface will prove challenging to drivers


NORTH WILKESBORO, N.C. — Three Cup drivers got their first chance to experience North Wilkesboro Speedway’s worn racing surface Tuesday and said tires will play a key role in the NASCAR All-Star Race there on May 21.

Chris Buescher, Austin Dillon and Tyler Reddick took part in a Goodyear tire test Tuesday. That test was to continue Wednesday.

The verdict was unanimous about how important tire wear will be.

“This place has got a lot of character to it,” Reddick said. “Not a lot of grip and it’s pretty unforgiving. It’s a really fun place.”

Dillon said: “If you use up your tire too early, you’re going to really be in trouble. You really got to try to make those four tires live.”

Buescher said: “The surface here was so worn out already that we expect to be all over the place. The speeds are fairly slow just because of the amount of grip here. It’s hard to get wide open until you’re straight.”

Reddick noted the drop in speed over a short run during Tuesday’s test. That will mean a lot of off-throttle time.

“I think we were seeing a second-and-a-half falloff or so over even 50 laps and that was kind of surprising for me we didn’t have more falloff,” he said. “But, one little miscue, misstep into Turn 1 or Turn 3, you lose a second sliding up out of the groove and losing control of your car.”

“That’s with no traffic. Maybe with more traffic and everything, the falloff will be more, but certainly we’re out of control from I’d say Lap 10 on. You have to really take care of your car. … It’s really hard 30-40 laps into a run to even get wide open.”

Chris Buescher runs laps during a Goodyear tire test at North Wilkesboro Speedway, while Austin Dillon is on pit road. (Photo: Dustin Long)

One thing that stood out to Dillon was how the facility looks.

While the .625-mile racing surface remains the same since Cup last raced there in 1996, most everything else has changed.

In some cases, it is fresh red paint applied to structures but other work has been more extensive, including repaving the infield and pit road, adding lights for night racing, adding SAFER barriers, the construction of new suites in Turn 4 and new stands along the backstretch.

“It’s cool to see how much they’ve done to the track, the suites, the stands that they’re putting in,” Dillon said. “To me, the work that is going in here, we’re not just coming for one race. We’re coming here for a while. I’m excited about that.”

Drivers to watch in NASCAR Cup race at COTA


Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series race at Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas, has attracted an entry list that includes talent beyond that of the tour regulars.

Jordan Taylor, who is substituting in the Hendrick Motorsports No. 9 Chevrolet for injured Chase Elliott, brings a resume that includes 31 IMSA class wins, two 24 Hours of Daytona overall wins and two IMSA wins at COTA.

MORE: NBC Driver Rankings: Christopher Bell is No. 1

Jenson Button won the Formula One championship in 2009 and has five F1 starts at COTA. He is scheduled to be a driver for the NASCAR entry in this year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Kimi Raikkonen, entered by Trackhouse Racing as part of its Project 91 program, won the 2007 F1 championship and has eight F1 starts at the Austin track.

They will draw attention at COTA this weekend, along with these other drivers to watch:


Brad Keselowski

  • Points position: 5th
  • Best seasonal finish: 2nd (Atlanta I)
  • Past at COTA: 19th and 14th in two career starts

Keselowski hasn’t been a star in road course racing, but his 2023 season has started well, and he figures to be in the mix at the front Sunday. He led the white-flag lap at Atlanta last Sunday before Joey Logano passed him for the win.

AJ Allmendinger

  • Points position: 17th
  • Best seasonal finish: 6th (Daytona 500)
  • Past at COTA: 5th and 33rd in two starts

The Dinger is a road course expert. Last year at COTA, he was involved in tight racing on the final lap with Ross Chastain and Alex Bowman before Chastain emerged with the victory.

Ross Chastain

  • Points position: 3rd
  • Best seasonal finish: 3rd (Auto Club)
  • Past at COTA: Two straight top fours, including a win

Chastain lifted Trackhouse Racing’s profile by scoring his — and the team’s — first Cup victory at COTA last season. He’s not shy about participating in the last-lap bumping and thumping that often mark road course races.


Chris Buescher

  • Points position: 13th
  • Best seasonal finish: 4th (Daytona 500)
  • Past at COTA: 13th and 21st in two starts

Buescher has never led a lap at COTA and is coming off a 35th-place finish at Atlanta after being swept up in a Lap 190 crash. Although he has shown the power to run near the front this year, he has four consecutive finishes of 13th or worse.

Alex Bowman

  • Points position: 20th
  • Best seasonal finish: 3rd (Las Vegas I)
  • Past at COTA: Two straight top 10s

Bowman’s four-race run of consistent excellence (finishes of fifth, eighth, third and ninth) ended at Atlanta as he came home 14th and failed to lead a lap. At COTA, he is one of only four drivers with top-10 finishes in both races.

William Byron

  • Points position: 28th
  • Best seasonal finish: 1st (Las Vegas I, Phoenix I)
  • Past at COTA: 11th and 12th in two starts

Involvement in an accident at Atlanta ended Byron’s two-race winning streak. He’ll be looking to lead a lap at COTA for the first time.



Three Reaume Brothers Racing team members suspended by NASCAR


Three members of the Reaume Brothers Racing No. 33 Craftsman Truck Series team have been suspended for three races by NASCAR after a piece of tungsten ballast came off their truck during last Saturday’s race at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

The suspensions were announced Tuesday.

Crew chief Gregory Rayl and crew members Matthew Crossman and Travis Armstrong were suspended because of the safety violation. Mason Massey is the team’s driver.

MORE: Xfinity driver Josh Williams suspended for one race

In a tweet following the announcement of the penalty, the team said it will not file an appeal. “The ballast became dislodged only after the left side ballast container had significant contact with the racing surface,” according to the statement. “We would like to be clear that there was no negligence on the part of RBR personnel.”

NASCAR also announced Tuesday that Truck Series owner/driver Cory Roper, who had been suspended indefinitely for violating the substance abuse policy, has been reinstated.

The Cup, Xfinity and Truck Series are scheduled to race this weekend at Circuit of the Americas.


Josh Williams suspended for one race after Atlanta infraction


NASCAR Xfinity Series driver Josh Williams has been suspended for one race because of his actions during last Saturday’s Xfinity race at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

Williams will be ineligible to participate in Saturday’s Xfinity race at Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas. He would be able to return for the April 1 race at Richmond, Virginia.

Williams was penalized for a “behavioral” infraction, specifically disobeying a NASCAR request.

In a tweet after the suspension was announced, Williams said: “I stand behind what I did and I don’t regret any decisions I made. I stand behind NASCAR for these decisions and will continue and always support them.” He said Alex Labbe will drive the team’s No. 92 car at Circuit of the Americas this weekend.

MORE: Three Reaume Brothers Racing team members suspended

NASCAR officials ordered Williams off the track during Saturday’s race after his car was involved in an accident. Debris falling from his car prompted a caution flag, leading NASCAR to order him to park.

Instead of going to the garage area, Williams parked his car at the start-finish line and walked to pit road.

Williams was escorted to the NASCAR hauler office at the track. He waited there until the conclusion of the race and then met with officials for about 20 minutes.

MORE: NBC Power Rankings: Christopher Bell rises to the top

Section 8.8.9.I of the Xfinity Series Rule Book states that with the Damaged Vehicle Policy, NASCAR can order a car off the track: “At the discretion of the Series Managing Director, if a damaged vehicle elects not to enter pit road on the first opportunity or if a damaged vehicle exits pit road before sufficient repairs had been made and thereafter causes or extends a caution (e.g. leaking fluid, debris, etc.), then said vehicle may incur a lap(s) or time penalty or may not be permitted to return to the Race.”

Williams later admitted he had violated a rule but said he was frustrated by the NASCAR decision.

“We all work really hard and to only run ‘X’ amount of laps and then to have something like a piece of Bear Bond and put us out of the race, it’s really frustrating,” Williams said after his meeting with series officials. “Small team. We work really hard. We’ve got to make our sponsors happy, right? It doesn’t do any good sitting in the garage. It is what it is. We’ll learn from it and move on.

“I told them I was a little bit frustrated,” Williams said of NASCAR’s call, “but it was in the rule book.”