NCWTS: The Night Belongs to Michael Waltrip
Posted by: Anne-Marie Rhodes, follow @annemarierhodes
DAYTONA BEACH, FL-Where do I begin? What a race, right? Daytona tonight belongs to Michael Waltrip. On the lap that matters the most, after a green-white-checkered; Waltrip takes the win in Daytona for the 12th annual NextEra Energy Resources 250 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race. Ten years to the day that the late Dale Earnhardt passed away at the very same track, Waltrip wins.
Waltrip fighting back tears, clearly having a hard time getting the words out tells the television announcers, ”My brother knows, my brother knows, let him tell you.”
Before Waltrip made his very emotional win, it certainly was a wild night on the track.
There was a lot of beating and banging going on with the first Big One happening on lap 76 including 14 trucks scattering all over the track and infield grass. Drivers included in this accident were 20 Joanna Long, 5 Travis Kvapil, 30 Todd Bodine,13 Johnny Sauter, 88 Matt Crafton, 07 Donnie Neuenberger, 33 Ron Hornaday, 9 Max Papis, 77 Justin Lofton, 50 TJ Bell, 23 Jason White, 46 Craig Goess Jr., 62 Brendan Gaughn, and 10 Jennifer Jo Cobb.
Then on lap 98 another very alarming Big One occured that brought out a red flag for a little over ten minutes. Drivers in this accident included 84 Chris Fontaine, 93 Shane Sieg, 18 Kyle Busch, 3 Austin Dillon, 31 Jam es Buescher, 30 Todd Bodine, 32 Brad Sweet, 51 Aric Almirola, 29 Parker Kligerman, and 9 Max Papis.
Chris Fontaine thinking back on how close he was to victory before the wreck ruined his chance said, ”I could smell victory, I could taste it.”
At this point, everyone is asking the question, “Are there any trucks left on the track?”
The answer to that is absolutely. On the last restart we watched as Elliott Sadler and Michael Waltrip fought for the lead. Causing everyone to jump to their seats while he slid past Sadler, Michael Waltrip makes it to the checkered flag first.
Waltrip takes a victory lap with the flag, pulls into Victory Lane, embraces his daughter with tears rolling down his cheeks and thinks not of his win, but of the man that has been on his mind for the last ten years.
Standing in Victory Lane Waltrip says, ”God bless Dale (Earnhardt). I came to celebrate a life, I didn’t come to celebrate a win.”
Tonight’s Top Five: Michael Waltrip, Elliott Sadler, Clay Rogers, Miguel Paludo, Kyle Busch
Posted: February 18th, 2011
Categories: Featured, Nascar Camping World Truck Series.
Tags: Big One, Dale Earnhardt, Daytona International Speedway, Elliott Sadler, Michael Waltrip, Nascar Camping World Truck Series, Racing