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Ryan Newman Hospitalized After Airborne Wreck in Final Seconds of Daytona 500, Hamlin Steals Victory

Ryan Newman Launched Into Air in Final Seconds of Daytona 500 as Hamlin Steals Victory

UPDATE 8:36pm EST: WFTV Sports Anchor, Joe Kepner, tweeted some potentially positive news: “Heard crowd cheering but couldn’t see much. One of Newman’s crew said he didn’t know if he was okay as he walked by. A Penske employee told me he is awake. #Daytona500”

UPDATE 2/17/20 8:31pm EST: Ryan Newman was said to not be immediately responsive on his radio following the incident. He was immediately transported to the hospital following the incident. Safety crews helped Newman from the car, using the help of black screens to shield the situation from the fans.

Daytona 500 Recap

It can be rather ironic when we think about it. When it comes to just about any form of racing, it’s all about going fast. Perhaps, the appeal of something like NASCAR is that it throws patience in the mix. Surging to the front of the pack isn’t always the best move. Instead, sometimes, it’s more about the long game. In fact, simply getting to the final laps can be the biggest challenge of them all.

Two weekends ago, we would watch the NASCAR Clash only have six drivers finish from the field of 18. Even the machines that did bring it home as they crossed the finish line were battered and bruised. Being in a position to have a shot in the final few laps is really the name of the game.

Speaking of the long game, we would see the 2020 Daytona 500 delayed from Sunday to Monday. However, when the green flag would finally fly on Monday afternoon, the action was top notch. Several caution flags would fly as the race began to wind down. After a late caution, four laps would spell out an all-out race for the finish… or so we thought.

Ryan Newman and Denny Hamlin seemed to have the strongest cars in the pack. They would immediately jump out on the rest of the pack as the announcers panicked that they might be too far out. They were referring, of course, to the idea that the rest of the pack would have more drafting power. As the race was on to see if the rest of the field could catch the leaders, a massive wreck would take out a good portion of the remainder of the field.

With just 2 laps left, another caution would set up what NASCAR calls “Overtime.”

In overtime, the race can’t end under caution. Instead, there would be two laps to go all out. As the green-white-checkered situation would unfold, the race was Hamlin’s to lose. However, Kevin Harvick, Ryan Newman, Chris Buescher, and Ryan Blaney were hot on his trail.

The first shot at a restart didn’t pan out so well. In fact, there was another wreck before the field made it back to the line. However, the second try at overtime was a success!

Once we finally got to see the finishing sequence unfold, almost four hours later, all drivers would make their final push. Hamlin led the drivers to the start/finish line on the outside.

Ryan Newman would prove to be the strongest competition as Hamlin tried his best to block and failed. Newman took the lead, followed by Blaney. As they went three-wide just before the finish line, Newman would be shot into the air after contact. He would be transported straight to the hospital as we await status updated.

Denny Hamlin slid past Ryan Blaney to take home victory for the second time in a row. He would become the first back-to-back winner since Sterling Martin in 1994-1995.

23 of the 40 cars that started the race were able to finish as the event was filled with carnage.