Ricky Stenhouse Jr ruffled some feathers in the Demolition Derby on the high banks of Daytona
Ricky Stenhouse Jr swept stage 1 and stage 2. However, along the way he was involved in a lot of drama under the lights last week at Daytona International Speedway. Despite that the car continued to roll on to the checkered.
First, the big one. William Byron threw a block on Brad Keselowski. At the same time, Ricky Stenhouse Jr put a bump draft on Keselowski. This turned Keselowski in front of the field and took out 10+ cars as Stenhouse rolled on by.
A few drivers placed the blame on Stenhouse for that incident. Others placed the blame on Byron.
Moments later… Stenhouse either pushed up the banking or tried to side draft in the middle of the corner. Either way, Stenhouse clipped the left rear of Kyle Busch and turned him into William Byron. Stenhouse was involved in another multiple car pile up at the front of the field. Again, he rolled on by the accident.
“I got hit in the left rear. Same guy that caused the first one caused the second one there,” Kyle Busch said after exiting the infield care center. “That’s very disappointing. He is probably going to be fastest car left – he might win the race.”
There was several other minor incidents. Kyle Larson blew a tire, Stenhouse was collected as they pirouetted across the banking. Again, Stenhouse was still rolling.
Next, Aric Almirola turned up the hill in the tri-oval. He doored Stenhouse and pushed in his left rear fender. This was likely a retaliation by Almirola for something earlier in the race.
Laps later, Stenhouse blew his left rear tire. He slid and looped through the infield grass. A few fenders were missing but so were everyone else’s fenders. And yet again, Stenhouse was still rolling.
At the end of the race, a lot of drivers and corresponding racing fans were upset with Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Management for Roush Fenway Racing, NASCAR officials and track management arranged for a security escort out of the speedway according to NASCAR.com.
After the race, Kurt Busch called the race a StenhouseDD (Demolition Derby).
“Sucks we got caught up in the #StenhouseDD (DemolitionDerby) but it’s a product of him being 17th in points and racing for every point,” Kurt Busch tweeted after the event.
Stenhouse didn’t take much of the fault for the accidents initially. Instead, he called it a product of superspeedway racing and playoff desperation.
“No, it’s aggressive speedway racing,” Stenhouse told NASCAR.com. “We needed to win to get in the Playoffs, so it is what it is.”
“It was fun for a while. I was frustrated with myself causing crashes like that. You don’t ever really want to do that. For us, my car was a lot of fun to drive.”
“Everybody else had a lot of handling issues and my car drove really good and had really good speed, so hats off to Jimmy Fennig (Roush Fenway’s superspeedway program manager) and those guys and (engine builder) Doug Yates. We just didn’t finish it off.”
Ricky Stenhouse Jr concluded the event 1 lap down in 17th after leading 51 laps in the race.
Daytona International Speedway
July 2018 Highlight Video
Related: Daytona: Race Results – July 7, 2018