Daytona 500 Race Report
• Mark Martin, No. 55 Aaron’s Dream Machine Toyota - finished 10th.
• Clint Bowyer, No. 15 5-hour ENERGY Toyota - finished 11th.
• Martin Truex Jr., No. 56 NAPA AUTO PARTS Toyota - finished 12th
MARK MARTIN SUMMARY: No. 55 Aaron’s Dream Machine Toyota driver Mark Martin finished 10th in Monday’s rain-and-fire-delayed Daytona 500. The Michael Waltrip Racing driver battled at the front of the field for most of the race even taking the lead for two laps just after the midway point. With 40 laps remaining, Martin ran in 13th when Juan Montoya’s car struck a jet dryer triggering a massive fire prompting a two-hour delay. The race resumed with 34 laps left and Martin in seventh place. Martin hooked up in the draft with MWR teammate Martin Truex Jr. in the green-white-checkered finish but couldn’t crack the top five in the final laps. The Aaron’s Dream Machine returns to action Sunday at Phoenix International Raceway.
• Started 22nd and finished 10th
• Climbed to seventh by lap 64 narrowly avoiding several wrecks including a multi-car, second-lap
• Timely caution with Martin on pit lane vaulted him to the lead with 70 laps to go. Held lead for two
• Monday marked Martin’s 28th Daytona 500 and first race with Aaron’s and Michael Waltrip Racing.
MARTIN QUOTE: “I had a great night. I’m really happy how our team worked together. I told everyone before the race to remember how long 500 miles here really is. I was really reminding myself that what happens in the first three-quarters of the race doesn't matter. So we were just riding until the end. We could see the front at the end and I thought we had a shot with Martin pushing us but we came up just a bit short. Still, it was a great night for my team, Aaron’s, Michael Waltrip Racing and everyone. It’s been a wild Speedweeks but I’m really excited about 2012 in the Aaron’s Dream Machine. What a great way to kickoff our year.”
Clint Bowyer Race Summary: No. 15 5-hour ENERGY Toyota driver Clint Bowyer finished 11th in Monday’s rain-and-fire delayed Daytona 500. The Michael Waltrip Racing driver moved from 30th into the top-15 following a multi-car wreck on lap two. He continued his march toward the front running in the top 10 and frequently jumping into the top five. He raced in fifth on lap 128 when he ran out of gas coming to pitlane. He fell two laps behind the leaders. For the rest of the race Bowyer fought to regain the lost ground. Juan Montoya’s accident with a track jet dryer and the subsequent fire delayed the race more than two hours. Bowyer finally climbed back on the lead lap with 12 laps remaining. He raced hard on the green-white-checkered finish taking the checkered flag between teammates Mark Martin and Martin Truex Jr. for 10th, 11th and 12th. The 5-hour ENERGY team returns to action Sunday at Phoenix International Raceway.
• Started 30th and finished 11th.
• Raced in the top-five from lap 70 until lap 128.
• Ran out of fuel on lap 128 and fell two laps down.
• Received the Aaron’s Lucky Dog on lap 177 and again on lap 188 to get back on the lead lap.
• Monday marked Bowyer’s first race with 5-hour ENERGY and Michael Waltrip Racing.
Bowyer Quotes: “The 5-hour ENERGY Toyota was having a great night there until just past halfway. We moved up the field pretty quick and then we were just racing waiting for the right opportunity. I liked the position that we were in and I was just hoping that I could hold my position until it was time to go. Unfortunately we never got the chance. I’m not sure exactly what happened, but for some reason we ran out of fuel. My team never gave up and we were able to get back on the lead lap. Heck, I thought we had a shot there at the end. All in all a really good run for us considering everything we encountered.”
Martin Truex Jr. Race Summary: No. 56 NAPA AUTO PARTS Toyota driver Martin Truex Jr. finished 12th in Monday’s rain-delayed and fire-delayed Daytona 500. The Michael Waltrip Racing driver looked strong from the start and put on a mid-race charge to claim the $200,000 bonus for the lap 100 leader. Truex led eight laps during the race and appeared to be one of the fastest cars on the track. With 40 laps remaining, Juan Montoya’s collision with a track jet drier caused a tremendous fire stopping the race for more than two hours. There were no injuries. The race resumed with Truex continuing to mix it up with the leaders. In the green-white-checkered finish, Truex pushed MWR teammate Mark Martin to the front but the duo couldn’t hold off the cars on the lower lane. The NAPA AUTO PARTS team returns to action Sunday on the fast mile-oval at Phoenix International Raceway.
• Started 26th and finished 12th.
• Earned $200,000 bonus for leading at the race’s halfway mark.
• Led eight laps during the race.
• Pushed teammate Mark Martin in the final laps.
TRUEX QUOTE: “I pushed as hard as I could and I just couldn't go anywhere at the end. We had a good NAPA AUTO PARTS Toyota all day. We started to run hot there in the end and that was about it for the race when it came to any real challenges with our car. Chad and the guys did a great job to improve our car since the Duels. We led laps and led at halfway for the bonus. We just didn't lead at the end. Good day all and all for the entire Michael Waltrip Racing organization.”
NAME: Clint Bowyer
HOMETOWN: Emporia, KS
RESIDENCE: Clemmons, NC
NAME: Mark Martin
HOMETOWN: Batesville, AR
RESIDENCE: Daytona Beach, FL
NAME: Martin Truex Jr.
HOMETOWN: Mayetta, NJ
RESIDENCE: Mooresville, NC