Matt Kenseth claimed his second Daytona 500 title in four years in the most unique NASCAR race in history that was delayed by rain and an unprecedented late race track explosion.
The race's 54th edition began under the lights at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida, after originally being postponed until noon Monday when rain forced cancellation of the orginal start last Sunday.
With 40 laps remaining, the race was stopped for more than two hours after a problem with Juan Pablo Montoya’s car sent it out of control. The car hit a track-drying truck, causing its cargo of jet fuel to ignite in a vast explosion
Kenseth held off a last-lap charge by Dale Earnhardt Jr. Greg Biffle finished third, followed by Denny Hamlin and Jeff Burton.
Five-time champion Jimmie Johnson's spin collected Danica Patrick, who finished 38th in her Sprint Cup debut after her team repaired the damage to her No. 10 Chevrolet.
She finished 64 laps down.
"I didn't want something to happen to it or break, and at the end, it was very perplexing and I had nothing to gain but nothing to lose," Patrick said live on Fox television a few minutes after the race.
"I think I picked up a lot of good tips. I just wish the beginning of the race could have been a nice single-file line like when I got back out there. Maybe that's my lesson to learn there."