Can-Am Duel 1

Ryan Blaney wins Can-Am Duel No. 1 in overtime finish, Joey Logano second


Ryan Blaney edged out teammate Joey Logano and Darrell Wallace Jr. to win Thursday’s first Can-Am Duel qualifying race in an overtime finish.

Blaney led six laps of the race that helps determine the starting field for Sunday’s Daytona 500.

It’s the second 1-2 finish for Team Penske of Speedweeks after Brad Keselowski beat Logano in The Clash on Sunday.

The top five was completed by Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and Kurt Busch.

Blaney, who will start third in the Daytona 500, was pushed to the lead on the restart by Wallace.

“I saw (Wallace) was third and figured he’d give me a good push,” Blaney told Fox Sports 1. “He did a good job of racing us home. He did a great job. … I thought our cars in the Clash and tonight have been really, really good. We have amazing speed. Hopefully we can bring it home on Sunday.”

Logano narrowly beat Wallace to the checkered flag after they battled down the frontstretch. Wallace will start the Daytona 500 in seventh.

“We were just biding our time there, got to the top and rode,” Wallace told Fox Sports 1. “I think the biggest challenge for me there at the end there was obviously pushing Blaney out (front), you’re welcome, bud. But then to keep the 41 (Busch) behind me. He was pretty aggressive. … A little late moving up in front of the 22 (Logano). But seventh is a lot better than 25th.”

The two-lap shootout was set up be a crash on the backstretch between Keselowski and Jamie McMurray with three laps to go in the scheduled 60-lap race.

Keselowski was in third when McMurray made a run on his outside. Keselowski moved up and made contact before turning in to the outside wall. Keselowski finished 16th, McMurray placed ninth.

MORE: Race results

WHO HAD A GOOD RACE: Joey Logano finished second after leading 56 of 63 laps, a record for laps led in a Duel … Ricky Stenhouse Jr. earned his career-best finish in a Duel. His best result in his first six tries was 10th … Daniel Suarez bounced back from an early accident to finish eighth.

WHO HAD A BAD RACE: The first caution was issued on Lap 8 for a wreck in the tri-oval involving Jimmie Johnson, Daniel Suarez and Aric Almirola. Only Suarez was able to continue. … Johnson has wrecked out of both of his Speedweeks races so far … William Byron spun on Lap 39 after Stenhouse. attempted to pass him low in the tri-oval, which got Byron loose and turned him into the outside wall. Byron finished 18th … David Gilliland wrecked out with 12 laps to go after Stenhouse made a move to pass him and got Gilliland loose. He finished 17th …

NOTABLE: William Byron, Arica Almirola, Brad Keselowski and Jimmie Johnson will use backup cars in the Daytona 500. They will start from the rear of the field … Blaney’s win is the first for a Ford in a Duel since Matt Kenseth in 2012.

QUOTE OF THE RACE: “There were the two best friends that ever was on the bottom with Darrell (Wallace Jr.) and Blaney there. They pushed the heck out of each other.” – Joey Logano

What drivers said after Can-Am Duel 1 at Daytona

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Here’s what most of the 21 drivers in the first of two Can-Am Duel races had to say after Thursday night’s race:

Chase Elliott (winner): “Just a great way to start the season. I know it’s just a Duel win. We wished it counted towards the playoffs. We would rather it be on Sunday, but at the same time it means a lot to me and means a lot to our team. … We didn’t say one word about points before the race. We just kind of set out and wanted to race, not ride around. I think sometimes you ride around and you don’t know what your car is like and if it’s going to be the way you want it for Sunday. And you can also get yourself in trouble riding around. We took chances and it worked out, so I’m excited for Sunday.”

MORE: Chase Elliott wins first Can-Am Duel race at Daytona

MORE: Results from Can-Am Duel 1 at Daytona

Jamie McMurray (finished 2nd): “I went home (after the Clash race) and watched a lot of video on Monday, of some of the cars I thought were really good, to see how they were getting runs and how they were doing restarts. And, this car just had a little more speed in it and was able to suck-up a lot better than our other car. The balance was a little bit better. … I got hung out a couple of times and I was able to maintain and come back in at around fifth. So, it’s a really good car. I’m proud of our guys and glad that it’s still in one piece.”

Kevin Harvick (3rd): “We got there, but we just didn’t clear the 24. … We’ve got a couple things we need to work on before the 500, but, all in all, I’m pretty happy with no practice and still building our notebook on all these Fords.  We’ve still got plenty of speed, so that’s a good thing. … We got some points and that’s a good thing. … We didn’t get to victory lane like we wanted to, but still okay.”

Brad Keselowski (4th): “We had a good night. We knew the 24 car (race winner Chase Elliott) was going to be strong. It just didn’t shake out like I hoped it would in some of those pivotal moments, that’s part of it. I could have taken a few more risks. We’re going to work on some things that make that possible.”

Matt Kenseth (5th): “It was pretty good. We got in a lot of different situations out there. I felt like we had pretty decent speed. Wish we would’ve finished better but it was a productive race and didn’t get wrecked and got in a lot of different spots and kind of got a pretty good feel for what we’ve got.”

Trevor Bayne (6th): “My car felt really good tonight. It pushed like crazy and it runs the bottom better than any car I’ve ever really had here. It’s funny seeing all the Fords now. There are more out there with the 4 (Harvick) and the Stewart-Haas guys, but they seemed strong tonight. The RPM car, our Roush Fenway cars, Penske cars, Stewart-Haas cars — all the Fords are just fast, so it was fun sticking together and pushing up through there with the 4 and Joey (Logano) pushing me there at the end. I thought if we could have gotten the bottom lane rolling there at the end we had a shot at a top-three finish or so, but it was a good day and we raced hard, so it was a lot of fun.”

Martin Truex Jr. (7th): “Without a doubt it was more aggressive than I expected. I thought it was just as aggressive as the Clash on Sunday. That’s really saying something when you’re talking about a non-points race and everybody going for the win compared to a qualifying race, so Sunday is going to be a wild one for sure with the sun is out. Guys had their hands full tonight. I can’t imagine what Sunday is going to be like. It should be a lot of fun. We’re going to have to work on handling a little bit tomorrow and hopefully we’ll get a bunch of cars out there to do that with.”

Aric Almirola (8th): “It was a good run for us. I think that our Smithfield Ford Fusion had good speed in it. We mixed it up there a bit. I thought we had better car, I just couldn’t make the moves when I wanted to. We’ll find some more speed in our car. All in all it was a decent race for us. I think we have good momentum heading into the Daytona 500. We have good speed in our car. Our car drove well. We’ll just tune on it and find some more speed.”

Joey Logano (9th): “I was just talking with Todd (Gordon) and trying to figure out where our mistakes were tonight. I made a few on the race track. I was up there toward the front and made a move and lost everything I had gained. That one sucked on my part. We also had a loose wheel and need to understand why we had that. We had a couple of mistakes we need to clean up. Besides that, we learned some stuff tonight.”

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (13th): “I was really hoping that outside line would have got going. The front couple of cars just kept getting held back some. We were just in line and I was hoping with Kevin (Harvick) leading, it seemed like he had a strong car qualifying and stuff, but it just wasn’t as strong as the 24. I thought the 2 was a little bit better leading than the 4 was, but we were just riding in line behind the 43 (Aric Almirola). I thought the 78 (Martin Truex Jr.) was just gonna keep trying to get that line to go and they got checked up and he jumped to the outside, and then we were stuck in the middle.  I just kept trying to push the 43, but we weren’t going anywhere.”

Landon Cassill (15th): “Not much changed other than the fact we got in the back and couldn’t back up to the front. I tried to get behind the 17 (Ricky Stenhouse Jr.) there at the end, but it was blocked up front and we couldn’t go anywhere. It was kind of like gridlock, but I feel like my car is fast and faster than what we had last year, for sure. I’d like to get it handling a little bit better. I wanted to get up front and it did. I felt like it wasn’t handling quite as good at the end of the race as it did at the beginning for sure, but the holes just opening up for me and I was able to get up there.  I just wanted to try and hold that track position if I could.”

Chris Buescher (16th): “I am glad it was clean. That was my biggest worry was coming into this one and tearing up our Daytona 500 car. I’m glad to get out of here without a scratch on it. We can take the Cottonelle Mega Roll Chevrolet to the next one, which is the big one, the one that means something. Unfortunately, didn’t get any bonus points out of it, but was pretty happy with what we got.”

Corey LaJoie (18th): “Every kid in a race car dreams of racing in a Daytona 500 and I get to do that on Sunday. I really do feel bad about Reed (Sorenson). I just tried to fill a hole and it was getting down to it and I probably did have position on him. … Man, you come here idolizing Jimmie (Johnson), Dale (Earnhardt) Jr., all of these guys. I’m fans of all of these guys and I get to race all of them on Sunday. It’s amazing. The big man has got a plan. I’m excited to get up there and dice it up.”

Paul Menard (20th): “We had a good run and I think the No. 18 (Kyle Busch) kind of came up to shoot the middle and I was kind of side drafting and we just came together. I’m not really sure what happened. Good run with the Peak/Menards Chevy, it was tight, but fast all day long. We could get some momentum, just couldn’t do much once we got towards the front.  I’m proud of my guys. Shook some rust off from the off-season.  We will be ready for the (Daytona) 500.”

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Results from Can-Am Duel 1 at Daytona

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Chase Elliott won the first of two Can-Am Duel races Thursday night at Daytona Speedway.

Although it was an exhibition race, it also was a points-paying event, with Elliott earning his first victory since coming to the NASCAR Cup series full-time last season, when he won Rookie of the Year honors.

MORE: Chase Elliott wins first Can-Am Duel race at Daytona

MORE: What drivers said after first Can-Am Duel race at Daytona

Here’s the results of the first Can-Am Duel: