Buescher loses out on Daytona win: "This one stings a lot"

There were six drivers in the top-10 running order to start overtime at Daytona that were still trying to make the NASCAR Cup Series playoffs, but Chris Buescher had the best seat.

Buescher loses out on Daytona win: "This one stings a lot"

Buescher had grabbed the lead on Lap 157 of the originally scheduled 160-lap race and remained out front when a late-race, multi-car wreck brought out a caution and sent the race into a two-lap overtime.

Buescher chose to restart on the high lane but when the race restarted, Corey LaJoie gave Ryan Blaney a big shove in the bottom lane, which allowed Blaney to clear for the lead.

Buescher tried to recover to make another run on Blaney but his chance was cut short when another big wreck on the final lap ended the race under caution with Buescher in second – and out of the playoffs.

“It hurts. This one stings a lot,” Buescher said. “At the same time, appreciate everybody at Roush Fenway Racing. Wanted to get that one for so many different reasons.

“To miss that playoff spot by one spot, that’s a tough ending to a day. Proud of this group. Proud of the car we brought. I’m sure I’ll play it back and find something else different again.

“Top line wasn’t as organized on that start. The bottom, they were digging. We were fortunate to get back to second.”

As it turned out, Saturday night’s regular season finale ended up one of the best performances of the season for Roush Fenway Racing. Buescher’s teammate, Ryan Newman, finished fourth and both cars escaped the wreck-marred race largely unscathed.

Tyler Reddick, Richard Childress Racing, Chevrolet Camaro Cheddar's Scratch Kitchen, Chris Buescher, Roush Fenway Racing, Ford Mustang Fifth Third Bank, Brad Keselowski, Team Penske, Ford Mustang Pirtek, Bubba Wallace, 23XI Racing, Toyota Camry Columbia PFG, Corey LaJoie, Spire Motorsports, Chevrolet Camaro Built bar

Tyler Reddick, Richard Childress Racing, Chevrolet Camaro Cheddar's Scratch Kitchen, Chris Buescher, Roush Fenway Racing, Ford Mustang Fifth Third Bank, Brad Keselowski, Team Penske, Ford Mustang Pirtek, Bubba Wallace, 23XI Racing, Toyota Camry Columbia PFG, Corey LaJoie, Spire Motorsports, Chevrolet Camaro Built bar

Photo by: John Harrelson / NKP / Motorsport Images

Buescher ended the regular season 16th in points but there were two drivers – Michael McDowell and Aric Almirola – who are lower in points but had wins which locked them in the playoff field.

Buescher said he tried a more aggressive approach in Saturday night’s race hoping it would pay off – and it nearly did.

“I think that was what we had to do, we had to be more aggressive on the blocking side. We’ve been aggressive with making moves, not protecting them. We did that today,” Buescher said.

“Back bumper, this thing, it’s rough, I know that. It’s just become a part of this speedway race. The more film you go back and watch the more I realize that’s where we're getting beat.

“I thought we got the initial jump well. Just didn’t have the help behind us to push us beyond that front row and get in front of (Blaney).”

Read Also:

shares
comments

Related video

Ryan Blaney survives to win wreck-marred finish at Daytona
Previous article

Ryan Blaney survives to win wreck-marred finish at Daytona

Next article

After Daytona near-win, NASCAR disqualifies Chris Buescher

After Daytona near-win, NASCAR disqualifies Chris Buescher
Load comments
How Larson took the long way round to NASCAR Cup glory Prime

How Larson took the long way round to NASCAR Cup glory

From villain to hero, Kyle Larson had to reach his lifelong goal the hard way and go through a very public shaming after a ban for using a racial slur, but his talents shone long before his name grabbed the headlines...

NASCAR Cup
Nov 10, 2021
How NASCAR is gearing up for its "biggest change" in 2022 Prime

How NASCAR is gearing up for its "biggest change" in 2022

It’s not just Formula 1 that’s set for upheaval in 2022, as the NASCAR Cup series adopts its Next Gen cars that will cast any in-built advantages aside and require teams to adopt a totally new way of operating. Far more than just a change of machinery, the new cars amount to a shift in NASCAR's core philosophy

NASCAR Cup
Oct 12, 2021
Why Bubba Wallace’s Talladega win is such a big moment for NASCAR Prime

Why Bubba Wallace’s Talladega win is such a big moment for NASCAR

Bubba Wallace claimed his maiden NASCAR Cup Series at Talladega on Monday to become the first Black victor in the category since Wendell Scott in 1963. Both Wallace and Scott had faced obstacles and racism in their paths to their breakthrough wins, and NASCAR is trying to put it right with its range of diversity programmes

NASCAR Cup
Oct 5, 2021
Why NASCAR's most resilient driver has landed on his feet at 23XI Prime

Why NASCAR's most resilient driver has landed on his feet at 23XI

In a career that has had many ups and downs, Kurt Busch has been written off many times before. But facing career uncertainty after the sale of Chip Ganassi's NASCAR team, the 2004 Cup champion has found a new berth at Denny Hamlin and Michael Jordan's 23XI organization - which underlines his enduring value

NASCAR Cup
Aug 31, 2021
From the archive: Dale Earnhardt’s final Autosport interview Prime

From the archive: Dale Earnhardt’s final Autosport interview

The death of Dale Earnhardt in the 2001 Daytona 500 shocked NASCAR to the core. At the Daytona 24 Hours, two weeks before his fatal accident, ‘The Intimidator’ shared his expectations of challenging for an eighth Cup title with JONATHAN INGRAM, in an article first published in the 15 February 2001 issue of Autosport magazine. Little did we know then what tragedy would unfold…

NASCAR Cup
Feb 18, 2021
The lasting NASCAR legacy after Dale Earnhardt’s death Prime

The lasting NASCAR legacy after Dale Earnhardt’s death

On February 18, 2001, seven-time NASCAR Cup champion Dale Earnhardt – the fearless ‘Intimidator’ – was in his element at Daytona International Speedway. While his own DEI team’s cars ran 1-2 towards the finish line, his famed #3 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet Monte Carlo was playing rear gunner to block any late runs from the chasing pack. As the cars tore through Turns 3 and 4 on that fateful final lap, Earnhardt maintained the strongarm tactics that encapsulated his persona… but his actions in those moments sadly proved to be his last.

NASCAR Cup
Feb 18, 2021
Inspired by Pitbull, the “revolution” sweeping through NASCAR Prime

Inspired by Pitbull, the “revolution” sweeping through NASCAR

The NASCAR Cup Series is changing. Whether it be the gradual morphing out the seasoned drivers of yesterday as the next generation step up, a radical calendar shake-up featuring more road courses than ever before and the prospect of an all-new car on the horizon, stock car racing’s highest level is nearing the end of a huge facelift.

NASCAR Cup
Feb 16, 2021
The NASCAR storylines to watch out for in 2021 Prime

The NASCAR storylines to watch out for in 2021

This weekend's Daytona 500 kickstarts a NASCAR Cup season that promises plenty of intrigue courtesy of new owners and a refreshed calendar. Here's what you need to know ahead of the new season…

NASCAR Cup
Feb 13, 2021