You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Breaking down how Ryan Newman's crash at the Daytona 500 happened

Tribune News Service logo Tribune News Service 2/18/2020 By Alex Andrejev, The Charlotte Observer
a toy car on a track with smoke coming out of it: Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Express Toyota, and Ryan Blaney, driver of the #12 Menards/Peak Ford, race to the finish as Ryan Newman, driver of the #6 Koch Industries Ford, wrecks on the last lap of the NASCAR Cup Series 62nd Annual Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on Monday, Feb. 17, 2020 in Daytona Beach, Fla. © Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images North America/TNS Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Express Toyota, and Ryan Blaney, driver of the #12 Menards/Peak Ford, race to the finish as Ryan Newman, driver of the #6 Koch Industries Ford, wrecks on the last lap of the NASCAR Cup Series 62nd Annual Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on Monday, Feb. 17, 2020 in Daytona Beach, Fla.

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — As Denny Hamlin made his way to victory lane Monday night, Ryan Newman made his way to the hospital. In the final minutes of one of NASCAR’s most iconic races, the Daytona 500, Hamlin narrowly missed Newman’s spinning car, which was tapped by Ryan Blaney.

Blaney crossed the finish line in second place.

“I don’t know,” Blaney said. “We just got bumpers hooked up wrong and turned him. I hope he’s all right.”

RELATED ARTICLE:  Hamlin goes back to back

As the drivers rounded Turn 4 and made their way down the final stretch, Newman led Blaney and Hamlin, respectively. Blaney crossed to the inside of the track as Hamlin stayed wide. Blaney’s car then tapped the back of Newman’s No. 6 Ford and his car spun to the outside wall.

Sports Pass: Get around our paywall for only $30/year. Unlimited access to NASCAR and all of The Charlotte Observer’s national award-winning sports coverage.

RELATED ARTICLE:  Earnhardt Jr., Trump among supporters wishing Newman well

It then flipped once on the track and was hit a second time by Corey LaJoie, causing Newman’s car to go airborne. The car then skidded upside down before coming to a stop on the infield and catching on fire. Newman was immediately transported to Halifax Hospital in Daytona Beach.

His status is not immediately known.

“We pushed Newman there to the lead,” Blaney said. “And then we got a push from the 11 (Hamlin), and I made a move off 4 on Newman and he blocked it and I kind of went low and he blocked that.”

Team Penske’s Blaney said it was then that he committed to pushing Roush Fenway Racing’s Newman to the finish line for a Ford victory, but the cars contacted wrong, causing the wreck.

RELATED ARTICLE: Newman's crash shows the tenuous line between safety and thrills

Newman’s reeling car passed in front of Hamlin, who drove low to miss it. Hamlin then edged past Blaney for his photo-finish victory.

After other drivers emerged from the track’s on-site care center, they immediately asked reporters for updates on Newman’s condition, to which there was no answer. All drivers are required to visit the care center following a crash, but Newman’s accident was so violent, he was instead taken directly to the hospital.

“That’s not good,” LaJoie said while watching a replay of the crash. “Is that the right side door or left side door? … That’s not good.”

Hamlin and winning team owner Joe Gibbs paraded to victory lane to celebrate the team’s second consecutive Daytona 500 victory, unaware of the severity of Newman’s wreck.

Gibbs said they didn’t know until after post-race interviews that Newman’s health was in question.

“It’s a weird balance of excitement and having this for yourself,” said Hamlin, who is now a three-time Daytona 500 champion. “But obviously someone’s health and their family’s is bigger than any win, any sport.”

“So we’re just hoping for the best.”

———

©2020 The Charlotte Observer (Charlotte, N.C.)

Visit The Charlotte Observer (Charlotte, N.C.) at www.charlotteobserver.com

Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

Related Slideshow: NASCAR Wrecks 2020 (provided by imagn)

AdChoices
AdChoices
image beaconimage beaconimage beacon