(NASCAR.com) For the second consecutive week, Daytona International Speedway crowned a first-time NASCAR Cup Series race winner. Joe Gibbs Racing driver Christopher Bell earned the honor Sunday on the track’s road course, taking the lead from Joey Logano with two laps to go and pulling away to a comfortable 2.119-second victory over the former series champion.
Bell, 26, is the 2017 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series champion and this is his second season at the premier level — his first driving for the championship Gibbs organization. His work Sunday, however, was more reminiscent of a veteran. There were eight caution flags, eight race leaders and a whole lot of action in the waning laps.
Bell pulled around Logano in the chicane just yards before the white flag and easily stretched the lead to earn his first career NASCAR Cup Series trophy. Bell’s Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Denny Hamlin finished third, followed by Kurt Busch and Brad Keselowski.
Kevin Harvick, AJ Allmendinger, last week’s Daytona 500 winner Michael McDowell — also a first-time winner this season — Ryan Preece and Alex Bowman rounded out the top 10. This is just third time in NASCAR Cup Series history the season has started with two first-time winners — joining 1949 and 1950.
For a complete recap of the race, click this link.