All eyes were on the playoff race as the final race of the regular season at the Daytona International Speedway went into the final stages. However, Kyle Busch was going for his first NASCAR win in 26 races when chaos took place in the ‘Big One’ at Daytona. A multi-car wreck followed with just eight laps to go.
Kyle Busch was leading the race when Tyler Reddick attempted to move up in front of him. Reddick, in second place, moved to the bottom of the track to try and pass Busch. He quickly and hastily moved in front of Busch and the two drivers made contact, triggering a wreck behind them.
Eight other drivers were affected as a result of the wreck. Erik Jones, Kurt Busch, Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Ryan Newman, and Austin Dillon, were some of those drivers. Kyle Busch was eliminated due to the incident. He led the race for 3 laps before it all happened. Newman, Kurt Busch, Stenhouse Jr., and Jones were also eliminated.
Reddick realized how he caused the wreck. “That was just stupid,” he said on his radio.
“Slide job gone bad. I saw him coming and even checked up and we still ran into each other,” Kyle Busch said after the race.
The incident brought out the red flag for more than 10 minutes. The three drivers in the playoff race – Jimmie Johnson, William Byron, and Matt DiBenedetto all just about survived the wreck.
Byron was fortunate on the day and used all the luck he had to survive another wreck later on. With just two laps to go, another major wreck took place that collected Johnson, whose playoff hopes ended there. Byron went through that wreck and for his first career Cup Series win, which also earned him the playoff spot.
For Kyle Busch, this race ended his chances of getting a win before the playoffs begin. The reigning Cup Series champion will now look to repeat Tony Stewart’s heroics from 2011. Stewart won the championship after not winning a single race in the regular season.