Column Hendrick sends statement with sweep to open Daytona

Carrie Guzman
February 13, 2019

"So this year to have them right on top of each other just means that the organization did a heck of a job, engine shop, body shop, teams working together".

Byron and teammate Alex Bowman locked in the front row for "The Great American Race" during qualifying laps Sunday at Daytona International Speedway.

Most notably, the Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolets are really good in single vehicle runs, while the new Ford Mustangs are really good running nose-to-tail in a single-file line. There were certain points where the Team Penske cars were all lined-up within the top-five and rival manufacturer driver's said they couldn't touch them.

"It's just unbelievable to have four cars qualify like that, then have Jimmie win the Clash". "I was being the pusher and I thought we could clean him on the outside lane".

"It feels good to see Kevin and Jimmie have success today, and it feels good to see William and Chad (do the same)". Byron recently turned 21 and begins his second season with Knaus, who split with Johnson after 17 years. Sunday's performances answered that question. Johnson's win continued a banner day for Hendrick Motorsports. We can kind of hang out during the Duel races, learn a little bit.

"To me, it would be good to combine with the All-Star Race", noted Harvick.

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The 20-car field was comprised of drivers who won a Cup pole in 2018, former Clash winners who competed full-time in 2018, former Daytona 500 winners who competed full-time in 2018, former Daytona 500 pole winners who competed full-time in 2018, and drivers who qualified for last year's Cup playoffs. "To be a part of that and be able to come back as crew chief of the No. 24 auto and qualify first for the Daytona 500 is just an awesome dream for me". "But when we come to these plate tracks, he causes at least one wreck every plate race", Menard said in an interview with FS1. "We continued with the Wednesday, Feb. 6, press conference at the NASCAR Hall of Fame with great optimism about our program coming together in time to make it to Daytona International Speedway".

"One great thing about it is I inherited a great core group of guys with the 48 team", he said.

Knaus' and Byron's pole didn't come with the controversy that accompanied Johnson's victory. It was the move Jimmie Johnson pulled on Paul Menard on the final lap of green flag racing, which led to the "Big One" and resulted in Jimmie Johnson walking into victory lane.

Menard went around and triggered a 15-car pile-up, while Johnson went below the double-yellow line and was declared the victor once the race-ending deluge began to fall from the sky.

A heavy rain shower moved into the Daytona Beach area minutes later, leading NASCAR officials to call the event after 59 of its scheduled 75 laps.

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