Parity — Three different winners in the first three races in Cup and Xfinity. Sunday’s Cup race saw seven different teams place a car in the top 10, including one team that had never before done so on a 1.5-mile track. Whether this continues remains to be seen, but the start of the year has certainly been interesting.
Rudy Fugle — Crew chief gets his first Cup win in his third race with William Byron. This is significant in so many ways for the crew chief who took over after Chad Knaus was promoted to an executive position at Hendrick Motorsports. Having worked with Byron in the Truck Series was pivotal for Fugle. He said: “I knew how to push (Byron’s) buttons, I knew how to motivate him, and that helped buy me some time to learn these Cup cars that I don’t know yet.”
Front Row Motorsports — Never before had this team scored a top-10 finish on a 1.5-mile track. Daytona 500 winner Michael McDowell delivered a sixth-place finish Sunday. McDowell is one of two drivers to open the season with three consecutive top 10s. He had four top 10s last season. “We have definitely out-performed where we thought we’d be, especially on the mile-and-a-half,” McDowell said. “These places, especially these slick places are really tough for the smaller teams.”
Kevin Harvick — With his fifth-place finish, he joins Michael McDowell as the only drivers to open the season with top 10s in each of the first three races.
Tyler Reddick — He entered Miami 33rd in the points. While he was frustrated with his runner-up finish, it helped him climb 10 spots in the points. “When you see how much faster you were than the guys in front of you and you know you’re running out of time, it gets frustrating,” he said.
Myatt Snider — He made it back-to-back first-time winners in the Xfinity Series on Saturday with his win. It came a week after Ty Gibbs won in his first series start this year.
Matt DiBenedetto — This is how rough the start of the season has been for him and the Wood Brothers: Sunday’s 28th-place finish was his best result of the year. He’s 34th in the points. He’s 16 points behind Jamie McMurray, who has only run one race to DiBenedetto’s three.
Joey Logano — After losing the past two races in the final laps, he was never a factor Sunday, struggling with the car’s handling. He finished 25th.
Noah Gragson — What does he have to do to win at Miami? For the third consecutive race, he looked to be in position to win in the final laps and misfortune struck. This time, it was David Starr’s car blowing a tire and going up into the wall in front of Gragson as he led.