DAYTONA, FL (AP) — Kurt Busch has won the Daytona 500, surviving a crash-filled season opener to win the race for the first time in 16 tries.
Busch passed Kyle Larson on the final lap before cruising to the victory. Larson ran out of gas shortly after passing Chase Elliott, who also came up short on fuel.
Busch led only one lap — the only one that mattered. He won in the No. 41 Ford that was partly sponsored by Monster Energy, the new title sponsor for NASCAR.
Busch prevailed in a race that saw many of NASCAR’s biggest stars knocked out in crashes. Seven-time and defensive Cup series champion Jimmie Johnson, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Matt Kenseth, Kyle Busch, Danica Patrick, Jamie McMurray and Brad Keselowski were among those eliminated long before the checkered flag flew.