Hamlin Wins 2019 Daytona 500; 2020 Logo Unveiled

By on February 18, 2019 in WNDB News

Daytona Beach, FL – It got really messy near the end, but this year’s Speedweeks ends with a special ending to the Daytona 500.

A massive wreck with less than 10 laps to go in the 61st edition of the “Great American Race” set the stage for an overtime finish in front of a sold-out crowd at Daytona International Speedway.

Denny Hamlin took advantage when the green flag dropped, shooting past teammate Kyle Busch and holding on through the white and checkered flags to win his second Daytona 500 on Sunday.

Hamlin celebrated the victory today (February 18th) during a special breakfast where Speedway officials also unveiled the logo for next year’s Daytona 500.

The driver of the #11 FedEx also won in 2016 and he dedicated the victory afterward to J.D. Gibbs, the son of legendary football head coach and NASCAR team owner Joe Gibbs. He died of a neurological disorder around a month ago.

Hamlin – who was recruited by J.D. to drive for Joe Gibbs Racing – chose the #11 in part because it was J.D.’s number when he played high school football and was a race car driver.

“What happened here is really unreal,” Joe Gibbs added. “I’m just thrilled and I think J.D. had the best view of everything. It’s emotional for all of us. It’s the most emotional win I’ve ever had in my life, in anything.”

Joe Gibbs Racing took three of its Toyotas to the top spots, with the #18 M&M’s of Kyle Busch finishing in second place and the #20 Sport Clips of Eric Jones in third.

During Lap 11 of the race, JGR crew members stood on the pit wall as a tribute to J.D., complementing the decal that was on Hamlin’s race-winning car.

The race itself went seven laps longer than scheduled because of that major wreck on Lap 191 which affected over 20 cars as well as two other wrecks after that, forcing Speedway officials to break out the red flag both times.

Also this weekend, Michael Annett won the season-opening race for the NASCAR Xfinity Series, leading the last 45 laps to win the NASCAR Racing Experience 300 on Saturday. The night before that, Austin Hill captured the NextEra Energy 250 in overtime in the season-opener for the NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series.

DIS now gets a small breather for a few weeks before racing resumes with the Daytona Supercross on March 9th, the opening event for the 78th annual Bike Week. NASCAR comes back to Daytona July 6th for the Coke Zero Sugar 400.

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