Blaney Wins Wild Talladega Race


Ryan Blaney won the 500 from Talladega Superspeedway on Monday afternoon to lock himself into the next round of the Playoffs.

The first stage of the race was run on Sunday, but rain postponed the rest of the race until Monday afternoon.  After a calm first half of the race, the second brought chaos that shuffled the running order.

Numerous big wrecks took out many of the front runners, and it set up for a two-lap sprint to the finish.  Blaney lined up first, and he quickly cleared Aric Almirola to take control on the restart.  He held onto the lead until the final turn, when Ryan Newman and Denny Hamlin pushed their way to the front.

Blaney and Newman made contact in the trioval, and Blaney was able to beat Newman to the finish line by .007 seconds.

Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images

Blaney said he couldn’t block Newman’s run if he wanted a chance at the victory.

“There was no blocking the 6 [of Newman] and the 11 [of Hamlin], they were coming so fast,” Blaney said.  “I figured I’d give up the bottom and they were just going to leave me in the middle.”

Blaney said the push from Almirola was able to give him enough momentum to get past Newman at the end.

“I can’t thank Almirola enough for helping me out there at the end; he was a great pusher all day,” Blaney said.  “[Newman] kind of pushed me below the yellow line…I definitely wasn’t going to go below the line before we made contact.”

Newman said he didn’t want to think of all the things he could have done to gain the .007 seconds that stood between him and the victory.

“I could have pinched him some more, I probably could have took the air,” Newman said.  “I saw the guys spinning in the back and I was hoping there’d be a yellow but there wasn’t.”

“We overcame a lot of obstacles, had cars flying on top of us and all that stuff; just proud of the team.”

Unofficial results:

  1. Ryan Blaney
  2. Ryan Newman
  3. Denny Hamlin
  4. Aric Almirola
  5. Michael McDowell
  6. Austin Dillon
  7. Corey LaJoie
  8. Chase Elliott
  9. Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  10. Ty Dillon
  11. Joey Logano
  12. Ross Chastain
  13. Matt Tifft
  14. Landon Cassill
  15. Parker Kligerman
  16. Paul Menard
  17. Kevin Harvick
  18. Ryan Preece
  19. Kyle Busch
  20. Chris Buescher
  21. Daniel Hemric
  22. Reed Sorenson
  23. Clint Bowyer
  24. Bubba Wallace
  25. Brad Keselowski
  26. Martin Truex Jr.
  27. Brendan Gaughan
  28. Kurt Busch
  29. David Ragan
  30. Matt DiBenedetto
  31. Blake Jones
  32. Daniel Suarez
  33. William Byron
  34. Erik Jones
  35. Austin Theriault
  36. Joey Gase
  37. Alex Bowman
  38. Jimmie Johnson
  39. Kyle Larson
  40. Spencer Boyd