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PHOTOS: Country Music Superstar Chris Lane Electrifies Crowd for Coke Zero Sugar 400

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Multiplatinum country music star Chris Lane performs for racing fans before the Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona International Speedway. Photo: Harry Castiblanco//Florida National News.

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (FNN SPORTS) – Multi-platinum country artist Chris Lane performed for fans prior to the Coke Zero Sugar 400 at the Daytona International Speedway Saturday.

With the Coke Zero Sugar 400 being the season finale race, NASCAR Cup Series racers are battling for the final playoff berth. Drivers and fans alike were on edge, ready to give it their all. Lane gave his, performing his best hits and braving the heat as if it didn’t faze him or his band.

Multiplatinum country music star Chris Lane performs for racing fans before the Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona International Speedway. Photo: Harry Castiblanco//Florida National News.

Multiplatinum country music star Chris Lane performs for racing fans before the Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona International Speedway. Photo: Harry Castiblanco//Florida National News.

Multiplatinum country music star Chris Lane performs for racing fans before the Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona International Speedway. Photo: Harry Castiblanco//Florida National News.

Multiplatinum country music star Chris Lane performs for racing fans before the Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona International Speedway. Photo: Harry Castiblanco//Florida National News.

Chris Lane's drummer hammers away in the heat during the Coke Zero Sugar 400 Pre-Race Concert at Daytona International Speedway. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

Chris Lane’s drummer hammers away in the heat during the Coke Zero Sugar 400 Pre-Race Concert at Daytona International Speedway. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

At one point in the concert, he brought an adorable young girl onstage to briefly join him in his performance. To also please his fans, he switched from his ball cap to the traditional cowboy hat, eventually tossing it into the audience for a lucky fan to catch.

Multiplatinum country music star Chris Lane performs for racing fans before the Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona International Speedway. Photo: Harry Castiblanco//Florida National News.

Multiplatinum country music star Chris Lane performs for racing fans before the Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona International Speedway. Photo: Harry Castiblanco//Florida National News.

Fans, wearing their favorite racers on their shirts, cheer during Chris Lane's Coke Zero Sugar 400 pre-race concert at Daytona International Speedway. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

Fans, wearing their favorite racers on their shirts, cheer during Chris Lane’s Coke Zero Sugar 400 Pre-Race Concert at Daytona International Speedway. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

Fans watched replays of the Wawa 250 on the big screen as they await the Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona International Speedway Saturday, August 28, 2021. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

Fans watched replays of the Wawa 250 on the big screen as they await the Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona International Speedway Saturday, August 28, 2021. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

Fans, wearing shirts with the names of their favorite racers, jumped, cheered, screamed and sang along with Lane as they await the intense competition to follow.

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Mellissa Thomas is Editor for Florida National News. | mellissa.thomas@floridanationalnews.com

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Monster Jam World Finals® Returns to Orlando This Weekend, Celebrates Monster Jam’s 30th Anniversary

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Monster Jam World Finals is premiering a first-ever figure-eight over-under track that allows trucks to simultaneously jump over each other while racing. Image: Feld Entertainment.

ORLANDO, Fla. (FNN SPORTS) – The prestigious Monster Jam World Finals® returns to Orlando May 21 and 22, 2022. This two-day championship is the biggest event of the season and showcases the best trucks and drivers in Racing, Freestyle, High Jump and Skills competitions. This year’s World Finals XXI celebrates Monster Jam’s 30th Anniversary and Grave Digger’s 40th Anniversary. It offers the largest Pit Party of the year, where fans can meet the drivers, see the trucks up close and enjoy many other family-friendly activities–all included in the ticket price. Fans can purchase tickets for both days through Ticketmaster.com.

Fans get to watch jaw-dropping stunts from the drivers’ 1,500 horsepower, 12-feet tall, 12,000-pound monster trucks, including 12-time world champion Tom Meents, driver of the Max-D truck. World record holder Bari Musawwir, driver of the Zombie truck, also returns to compete in the Skills Competition.

In just in 7.5 days, Camping World Stadium’s gridiron field transformed into the World Finals dirt track with 7,500 yards and 22.5 million pounds of dirt. This year’s track includes a first-ever figure-eight over-under track that allows trucks to simultaneously jump over each other while racing. Fans not only get to enjoy over-the-top stunts, and thrilling fireworks, but they’ll be the very ones choosing the winner.

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Mellissa Thomas is Editor for Florida National News. | mellissa.thomas@floridanationalnews.com

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PHOTOS: Rookie Austin Cindric Gets First NASCAR Cup Series Victory in Thrilling DAYTONA 500

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Austin Cindric and his crew celebrate in the Ruoff Mortgage Victory Lane at Daytona International Speedway after winning the 64th DAYTONA 500 Sunday, February 20, 2022. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (FNN SPORTS) – Source: NASCAR // On the 85th birthday of his car owner, Roger Penske, 23-year-old NASCAR Cup Series rookie Austin Cindric beat Bubba Wallace to the finish line by .036 seconds in overtime to win Sunday’s 64th running of the DAYTONA 500.

Bubba Wallace (McDonald's car) raced closely alongside Austin Cindric (Discount Tires, #2) in the final laps of the race, missing victory by a hair-thin .036 seconds. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

Bubba Wallace (McDonald’s car) raced closely alongside Austin Cindric (Discount Tires, #2) in the final laps of the race, missing victory by a hair-thin .036 seconds. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

In a thrilling run to the finish in NASCAR’s new Next Gen race car at Daytona International Speedway, Cindric held off Wallace and Chase Briscoe (.091 seconds behind) to notch his first Cup victory in his eighth start in the series.

 

Cindric, who was +2500 to win the DAYTONA 500 on Draftkings, got the win in chamber-of-commerce weather with a sold-out crowd jamming the grandstands.

“Oh, my God—do you know what makes this even better? A packed house,” Cindric exulted after climbing from his car. “A packed house at the DAYTONA 500. “Oh, my God, I’ve got so many people to thank. First and foremost, Roger Penske. Happy Birthday!

 

“Everyone has worked so hard on this Next Gen car and through the whole process. I am so excited. This makes up for losing a championship in the last race I was in (2021 Xfinity Series season finale at Phoenix Raceway).

 

“I’m surrounded by great people, that’s all there is to it. I know there’s going to be highs and lows, being a rookie. I’m just grateful for the opportunity and excited to climb the mountain ahead of us on the No. 2 team. We’re in the Playoffs—that’s one box checked. My gosh, what an awesome group of fans; what an awesome race car. I’m just really thankful.”

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (#47)'s late crash changed the race's outcome for Austin Cindric in the 64th DAYTONA 500. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (#47)’s late crash changed the race’s outcome for Austin Cindric in the 64th DAYTONA 500. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

A three-car wreck in Turn 4 on Lap 195 of a scheduled 200 wiped out the No. 47 Chevrolet of Ricky Stenhouse Jr., who was leading for a restart on that same lap but was turned by a push from Brad Keselowski. The incident forced the race to overtime, requiring one extra lap for Cindric to claim victory.

 

An earlier six-car accident on Lap 190 had eliminated reigning series champion Kyle Larson, Kevin Harvick, Todd Gilliland, Erik Jones and Noah Gragson, who was making his first start in NASCAR’s top division.

 

Cindric was the leader when the race restarted on Lap 200, and at the end of a wild two-lap scramble—after blocking a strong run from Team Penske teammate Ryan Blaney—he arrived at the finish line roughly three feet ahead of Wallace, who was runner-up in the Great American Race for the second time.

 

“I thought our Toyota teammates did good work until they got picked off 1, 2, 3 throughout the race, so we just had to survive,” said Wallace, who finished .260 seconds behind race winner Austin Dillon in the 2018 Daytona 500.

 

“Great Speedweeks, though. We’ll come home second. I’m going to be pissed off about this one for a while. I was happy on the first second place we got a couple years ago. This one sucks when you’re that close, but all-in-all, happy for our team, happy for our partners, and on to California.”

 

Blaney came home fourth, followed by Aric Almirola, who will leave full-time racing at the end of the season. Kyle Busch, Michael McDowell, David Ragan, Keselowski and Chase Elliott completed the top 10.

 

Less than three laps from the end of the first stage, a push from Keselowski turned the No. 21 Wood Brothers Ford of Harrison Burton sideways at the head of the outside lane. Burton’s Mustang nosed down the track into the No. 24 Chevrolet of William Byron, whose car slammed nose-first into the inside wall on the backstretch.

 

Kyle Busch spun sideways during the ensuing eight-car wreck. Denny Hamlin’s Toyota sustained terminal suspension damage, eliminating the field’s only multiple winner of the DAYTONA 500. The No. 1 Chevrolet of Ross Chastain was also knocked out of the race.

 

After the impact with Byron’s car and a jolt from the Toyota of Christopher Bell, Burton’s Ford turned upside down and landed on top of the Chevrolet of Alex Bowman, who had started the race on the outside of the front row. The impact righted Burton’s car, which a wrecker towed to the garage. Bowman lost four laps as his crew tried to return the No. 48 Camaro to raceable condition.

Alex Bowman (#48) pulls into Pit Road after a crash during the DAYTONA 500 at the Daytona International Speedway Sunday, February 20, 2022. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

Alex Bowman (#48) pulls into Pit Road after a crash during the DAYTONA 500 at the Daytona International Speedway Sunday, February 20, 2022. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

“I’m fine—I’ve hit a lot harder before, that’s for sure,” Burton said after a trip to the infield care center. “It’s just unfortunate. I hate it for the Wood Brothers group. They brought a really fast Ford Mustang down here and ended up on our lid, so that’s never good…

Harrison Burton speaks with the press at the AdventHealth Infield Care Center at the Daytona International Speedway after his car flipped and crashed in Stage 1 during the 64th DAYTONA 500 Sunday, February 20, 2022. Photo: J Willie David III / Florida National News.

Harrison Burton speaks with the press at the AdventHealth Infield Care Center at the Daytona International Speedway after his car flipped and crashed in Stage 1 during the 64th DAYTONA 500 Sunday, February 20, 2022. Photo: J Willie David III / Florida National News.

“I don’t know, I just got pushed and didn’t take it the right way—the car didn’t take it the right way or got pushed in the wrong spot. I’m not sure. I couldn’t really tell. I was looking out front to see what I had to do next to side draft the next guy that was on me, so just a bummer. I don’t really know what we could have done different, but we’ll move on and get better from it.”

 

From Hamlin’s standpoint, it was clear what happened.

Denny Hamlin speaks with the press at the AdventHealth Infield Care Center at the Daytona International Speedway after getting caught up in the Stage 1 crash during the 64th DAYTONA 500 Sunday, February 20, 2022. Photo: J Willie David III / Florida National News.

Denny Hamlin speaks with the press at the AdventHealth Infield Care Center at the Daytona International Speedway after getting caught up in the Stage 1 crash during the 64th DAYTONA 500 Sunday, February 20, 2022. Photo: J Willie David III / Florida National News.

“The 6 (Keselowski) was pushing the 21 (Burton) and you could see the 21 was kind of getting out of control there,” said Hamlin, who failed to finish a DAYTONA 500 for the first time in 17 starts and lost his chance for a fourth visit to Victory Lane. “So you know the mind-set was that you’ve got to back off, but I think the 6 was just insistent on pushing him at all costs and eventually turned the 21 around.

 

“Tough, you know, considering it was just for the stage. We were kind of boxed in there where I noticed that something was going to happen, but I was boxed in, I was behind a teammate (Kyle Busch), and I wanted to try to help. Again, just too aggressive pushing right there when they weren’t lined up and in control.”

 

Truex won the first stage under caution and then claimed victory in the second stage, which ran under green-flag conditions from the restart on Lap 72 to the conclusion on Lap 130. Truex came from third to first on the final lap to grab the stage win.

 

Keselowski, however, was first off pit road under caution for the stage break and led the field to green for a restart on Lap 138. Keselowski held the top spot until Tyler Reddick’s Chevrolet broke loose in Turn 4 on Lap 151 and started a wreck that damaged the contending cars of Truex, Joey Logano and Kurt Busch.

 

The 65th Annual DAYTONA 500 is scheduled for February 19, 2023 (subject to change). For more information on the 2023 Great American Race, visit www.DAYTONA500.com.

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Haley Edges Teammate Allmendinger in Photo Finish to Win Wawa 250 at Daytona International Speedway

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Justin Haley raises the Wawa 250 trophy with friends in the Ruoff Mortgage Victory Lane at Daytona International Speedway after winning the Wawa 250 Saturday, August 28, 2021. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (FNN SPORTS) – Source: NASCAR // Coming to the checkered flag, Justin Haley nudged his No. 11 Kaulig Racing Chevrolet just ahead of his teammates A.J. Allmendinger and Jeb Burton in a thrilling three-wide finish in the Wawa 250 NASCAR Xfinity Series race at Daytona International Speedway on Saturday afternoon.

The blink-of-an-eye .023-second victory marked the fourth superspeedway victory for the 22-year-old Haley but his first win of the 2021 season. The race was halted due to inclement weather Friday after only 19 laps but resumed at 12:30 p.m. ET Saturday. Haley has three wins on the Daytona high banks, also including one in a rain-shortened NASCAR Cup Series race here two years ago.

Haley (#11) just barely passes Allmendinger (#16) as they near the checkered line during the Wawa 250 at Daytona International Speedway Saturday, August 28, 2021. Photo: Harry Castiblanco.

Haley (#11) just barely passes Allmendinger (#16) as they near the checkered line during the Wawa 250 at Daytona International Speedway Saturday, August 28, 2021. Photo: Harry Castiblanco.

Allmendinger, who took the white flag in front of the field, may have just missed the race trophy, but he led the most laps on the day (30) and his runner-up effort was good enough to take the season driver standings lead by 17 points over defending series champion Austin Cindric, who was sidelined after a Lap 27 incident.

Although Haley and Allmendinger’s third Kaulig Racing teammate Jeb Burton made it a three-wide photo at the line, JR Motorsports driver Justin Allgaier actually nudged just ahead in the middle to officially take third place. Burton was credited with fourth place, followed by Joe Gibbs Racing’s Daniel Hemric, whose fifth-place finish was a massive comeback after his No. 18 was involved in the same early-race incident that took Cindric out.

NASCAR Cup Series regular Christopher Bell was sixth with Noah Gragson, Myatt Snider, Harrison Burton and Riley Herbst rounding out the top 10. Hemric, Harrison Burton and Haley all clinched spots in the NASCAR Xfinity Series Playoffs with their finishes today.

Justin Haley climbs on top of his car after winning the Wawa 250 at Daytona International Speedway Saturday, August 28, 2021. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

Justin Haley climbs on top of his car after winning the Wawa 250 at Daytona International Speedway Saturday, August 28, 2021. Photo: Harry Castiblanco/Florida National News.

“This has just not been the best season, it’s been really, really hard on this No. 11 LeafFilter team all year,” said an emotional Haley, who teared up in the car congratulating his crew after the checkered flag. “We’ve had a lot of bad luck.

“I was trying to formulate a plan there and obviously there were team orders. Hats off to Kaulig Racing. I think we’ve got the teammate thing down. It’s just so special to win here at Daytona.”

“I’ve won twice here and neither time did I get to see anyone [fans] on the frontstretch, so thank you guys for being here,” he told the cheering crowd. “I love you!”

Justin Haley poses with his trophy in the Ruoff Mortgage Victory Lane after winning the Wawa 250 at Daytona International Speedway Saturday, August 28, 2021. Photo: Harry Catiblanco/Florida National News.

Justin Haley poses with his trophy in the Ruoff Mortgage Victory Lane after winning the Wawa 250 at Daytona International Speedway Saturday, August 28, 2021. Photo: Harry Catiblanco/Florida National News.

The first 19 laps of the 100-lapper ran on Friday night, but Florida rain showers forced the Saturday matinee. The competition resumed, however, in the kind of typically flat-out, thrilling superspeedway storyline that NASCAR fans have become accustomed to.

“That was like the perfect photo shoot right there coming across the line for all the Kaulig Racing Chevys,” Allmendinger said with a huge grin. “Proud of my ‘son’ Justin Haley. He might be one of the best we’ve ever seen on superspeedways and Jeb did a fantastic job.

“I was just hanging on in the middle there. I thought we might get it [1-2-3 finish] but proud of everyone at Kaulig Racing.”

Haley and Burton won the opening two stages in an action-packed afternoon that had great impact on the championship chase.

Cindric, the defending Xfinity Series champion and a series best five-race winner in 2021, has led the series standings all season. But he was involved in a five-car accident toward the front of the field on Lap 26 that eliminated him from the race less than a half hour after it re-started.

Cindric’s No. 22 Team Penske Ford was hit from behind by Snider’s No. 2 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet entering Turn 1 sending a handful of cars into save-mode, with several – including top-10 finishers Hemric and Snider – suffering damage but returning to the race.

The hard hit into the inside retaining wall did enough damage to Cindric’s Ford, however, it could not continue. It marked the second straight race the 22-year-old was sidelined before the second stage even began. He finished 37th at Michigan last week after being collected in a seven-car accident only 12 laps into the race.

“Pretty upset for our Ford Mustang, two weekends in a row we’ve had race winning capable cars and I’ve had probably a total of 40 laps in the last two weeks,” Cindric said. “Really frustrating to have that situation play out so early. It only takes one, sometimes.”

Coming into the Daytona race, Cindric held a 35-point advantage over Allmendinger. Now he trails by 17 with only three races remaining to set the 12-driver Playoff field.

The top-10 work by Riley Herbst was significant in terms of the Playoffs. He came into the race ranked 12th, but was able to extend his lead ahead of Michael Annett (30th) and Brandon Brown (34th) who both had bad luck days at Daytona.

 

NASCAR Xfinity Series Race – 20th Annual Wawa 250
Daytona International Speedway
Daytona Beach, Florida
Friday, August 27, 2021

1. (9) Justin Haley, Chevrolet, 100.

2. (1) AJ Allmendinger, Chevrolet, 100.

3. (4) Justin Allgaier, Chevrolet, 100.

4. (13) Jeb Burton, Chevrolet, 100.

5. (21) Daniel Hemric, Toyota, 100.

6. (15) Christopher Bell(i), Toyota, 100.

7. (2) Noah Gragson, Chevrolet, 100.

8. (23) Myatt Snider, Chevrolet, 100.

9. (5) Harrison Burton, Toyota, 100.

10. (6) Riley Herbst, Ford, 100.

11. (7) Brett Moffitt, Chevrolet, 100.

12. (22) Sam Mayer #, Chevrolet, 100.

13. (34) JJ Yeley, Chevrolet, 100.

14. (32) David Starr, Toyota, 100.

15. (35) Jason White, Ford, 100.

16. (11) Ryan Sieg, Ford, 100.

17. (17) Josh Williams, Chevrolet, 100.

18. (12) Tommy Joe Martins, Chevrolet, 100.

19. (37) Chase Briscoe(i), Ford, 100.

20. (27) Jeffrey Earnhardt, Chevrolet, 100.

21. (26) Landon Cassill, Chevrolet, 100.

22. (18) Jordan Anderson(i), Chevrolet, 100.

23. (29) Blaine Perkins, Chevrolet, 100.

24. (8) Jeremy Clements, Chevrolet, 100.

25. (30) Mason Massey, Toyota, 100.

26. (33) Colby Howard, Chevrolet, 100.

27. (24) Ryan Vargas #, Chevrolet, 100.

28. (10) Jade Buford #, Chevrolet, 100.

29. (40) Tim Viens(i), Chevrolet, 100.

30. (19) Michael Annett, Chevrolet, 100.

31. (25) Alex Labbe, Chevrolet, 100.

32. (28) Kyle Weatherman, Chevrolet, 98.

33. (16) Matt Mills, Toyota, 98.

34. (31) Brandon Brown, Chevrolet, 97.

35. (39) Joe Graf Jr., Chevrolet, Accident, 88.

36. (36) Caesar Bacarella, Chevrolet, Accident, 82.

37. (20) Colin Garrett, Toyota, Accident, 71.

38. (38) Spencer Boyd(i), Chevrolet, Engine, 71.

39. (14) Austin Cindric, Ford, Accident, 27.

40. (3) Brandon Jones, Toyota, Engine, 17.

 

Average Speed of Race Winner: 121.753 mph.

Time of Race: 2 Hrs, 3 Mins, 12 Secs. Margin of Victory: 0.023 Seconds.

Caution Flags: 7 for 29 laps.

Lead Changes: 17 among 8 drivers.

Lap Leaders: A. Allmendinger 1-3;N. Gragson 4;A. Allmendinger 5-13;N. Gragson 14-16;A. Allmendinger 17-26;J. Haley 27-30;B. Brown 31-34;R. Herbst 35-43;B. Brown 44-45;A. Allmendinger 46-49;B. Brown 50-52;S. Mayer # 53;J. Burton 54-61;C. Bell(i) 62-65;N. Gragson 66-77;C. Bell(i) 78-96;A. Allmendinger 97-99;J. Haley 100.

Leaders Summary (Driver, Times Lead, Laps Led): AJ Allmendinger 5 times for 29 laps; Christopher Bell(i) 2 times for 23 laps; Noah Gragson 3 times for 16 laps; Riley Herbst 1 time for 9 laps; Brandon Brown 3 times for 9 laps; Jeb Burton 1 time for 8 laps; Justin Haley 2 times for 5 laps; Sam Mayer # 1 time for 1 lap.

Stage #1 Top Ten: 11,16,10,54,7,02,9,90,68,20

Stage #2 Top Ten: 10,16,11,98,54,9,18,7,99,8

Fans can still purchase tickets for Saturday night’s Coke Zero Sugar 400 (7:30 p.m. ET start) starting at $49 for adults and $10 for kids 12 and under. For ticket information, visit www.daytonainternationalspeedway.com, call 1-800-PITSHOP or stop by the Speedway Ticket and Tours Building outside the track off International Speedway Blvd.

The NASCAR Xfinity Series returns to Daytona International Speedway as a part of Speedweeks Presented by AdventHealth on Saturday, February 19, with the Beef. It’s What’s For Dinner. 300, the day before the 64th running of the Great American Race – the DAYTONA 500.

Fans can stay connected with Daytona International Speedway and see the latest speedway news on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

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