(MRN) Justin Haley scored his first Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series win when he was up front when the Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona International Speedway was called for rain with 33 laps to go.
Haley won in his third career series start driving the No. 77 Chevrolet for Spire Motorsports. He also finished second in Friday night’s Xfinity Series race at Daytona with Kaulig Racing.
“It’s absolutely a blessing, it’s pretty incredible,” Haley said. “I have so many great people around me…I never even saw myself running a Cup race until I got a call a few months ago to do Talladega. I don’t even know what to say.
“Last year at Daytona I got the Xfinity win taken away from me. To come back and win the Cup Series race is redemption.”
Haley led only one lap, the first of his Cup career.
William Byron, Jimmie Johnson, Ty Dillon and Ryan Newman rounded out the top five.
Corey LaJoie, Aric Almirola, Matt DiBenedetto, Matt Tifft and Kurt Busch completed the first 10 finishers.
Joey Logano and Austin Dillon won the first two stages.
The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series now heads to Kentucky Speedway next Saturday night.
How Haley Won: Right time, right place. Haley was running 27th before a multi-car accident wiped out a huge pack of cars and was able to cycle near the front of the field. Kurt Busch actually had the lead but pitted when it appeared the race would go back to green a lap later. Haley inherited the lead and then when NASCAR red flagged the race for a lightning strike in the area, he had the top spot and maintained it until the race was finally called for more inclement weather.
|9||31||36||Matt Tifft #||Ford||127||28||Running||0|
2019 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Standings
After Race 18: Daytona
|Rank||Driver||Wins||Top 5s||Top 10s||Poles||Points||-Leader||Stage Wins||Playoff Points|
|5||Martin Truex Jr.||4||7||11||0||597||-103||2||22|