Twenty years ago, Dale Earnhardt Sr. won his only Daytona 500. Austin Dillon was just 7 years old. Twenty years later, Dillon claimed the Great American Race in Earnhardt’s No. 3.
The 27-year-old Dillon won the 60th running of the Daytona 500 in overtime on Sunday after spinning and passing Aric Almirola on the final lap. It’s the second win of Dillon’s career and means he will be heading back to the playoffs to compete for a NASCAR championship later this season.
The field was running single file with 10 laps to go as Ryan Blaney continued to pace the field after leading over 100 laps when William Byron went spinning near the start-finish line to bring out the caution and set up the finish.
On the restart, Blaney shuffled the lead with Denny Hamlin and 2017 Daytona 500 winner Kurt Busch before the big one came down. It appeared that Blaney got into the rear bumper of Busch, sending him into a tailspin and taking him out along with pole-starter Alex Bowman, Matt DiBenedetto, Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Ryan Newman and 2017 Cup champ Martin Truex Jr. The massive wreck sent the race into overtime.
Hamlin led the field to green in overtime but was passed by Almirola on the backstretch. Coming to the checkered flag Dillon got into the back of Almirola and spun him en route to the finish line.