Which NASCAR Cup Champions Have Never Won at the Daytona 500?

Published 02/11/2021, 11:45 AM EST
A general view of the track taken during the Daytona 500 Speedweeks at the Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida.Mandatory Credit: Robert Laberge /Allsport


The Daytona 500 is regarded as one of the most prestigious races in the NASCAR scene. Many drivers are eager to reach Victory Lane here, and most of the champions have triumphed at the race. However, there are a few exceptions, champions who never won at the Daytona 500. Among them are Kyle Busch, Martin Truex Jr, and Brad Keselowski.

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Out of the trio, the Joe Gibbs pair have finished second, with Keselowski could only muster third. There is no denying that the three of them are still threats to win the race, but have not taken the extra step.

So, when the 2021 edition of the race kicks off, these three drivers will be hugely fired up to win at last.

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It is also worth mentioning that the trio are approaching their twilight years and time is running out.

So, this does beg the question, can Busch, Truex Jr, and Keselowski win the Daytona 500? Or are they destined to retire without a Daytona 500 win in the bag?

Can Busch, Keselowski, and Truex Jr break the Daytona 500 jinx?

Obviously, the three of them are hugely talented drivers. In addition to that, they have registered wins at the Daytona International Speedway. So, a win at the iconic event is not beyond the realm of possibility.

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Truthfully speaking, Keselowski probably has one of the best chances to win. This is largely because he has an impeccable record on superspeedways. It was just unfortunate that the driver has not added the Daytona 500 event to that list. However, the Penske driver revels at superspeedway races, and the team also mirrors his sentiment.

In a similar vein, Kyle Busch is also capable of winning the Daytona 500. His motivation will be to try and get on the list of champions who have won the marquee race.

For example, when he was close to going a full season without a win in 2020, he bucked up and won at Texas. It also helps that he won the Busch Clash race. Finally, Martin Truex Jr came ever so close to winning in 2016 and will be hoping to clinch it at last.

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Another couple of contenders are Chase Elliott and Kyle Larson. Now that he has clinched his maiden Cup Series championship, Elliott joins this list. Meanwhile, Larson is another driver who is just as capable of winning the iconic race. Although he is not a champion yet, his talent is so great that one may just be on the horizon.

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Dhruv George

11383 articles

Dhruv George is a senior Formula One and NASCAR analyst for EssentiallySports, having authored nearly 12000 articles spanning different sports like F1, NASCAR, Tennis, NFL, and eSports. He graduated with a PG Diploma in Journalism from the Xavier Institute of Communications. Dhruv has also conducted interviews with F1 driver Pierre Gasly and Moto2 rider Tony Arbolino.

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