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Stewart-Haas Racing - Sprint Unlimited Race Report
Event: Sprint Unlimited (non-points race)
Series: NASCAR Sprint Cup Series
Location: Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway (2.5-mile oval)
Winner: Denny Hamlin of Joe Gibbs Racing (Toyota)
SHR Finish: Kevin Harvick (Started 6th, Finished 5th / Running, completed 75 of 75 laps)
Tony Stewart (Started 9th, Finished 11th / Accident, completed 35 of 75 laps)
Kurt Busch (Started 10th, Finished 14th / Accident, completed 35 of 75 laps)
Danica Patrick (Started 12th, Finished 16th / Accident, completed 35 of 75 laps)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the No. 4 Jimmy John’s Chevrolet SS, led the way for Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) in the Sprint Unlimited by finishing fifth in the non-points NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race Saturday night at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway. It was Harvick’s sixth top-five finish in 10 career Sprint Unlimited starts.
The exhibition race featuring drivers who won a pole during the 2013 season, as well as past winners of the Sprint Unlimited, was decimated by a multi-car accident on lap 35. Of the 18 drivers who started the race, seven were collected, including Harvick and his SHR teammates, Tony Stewart, Kurt Busch and Danica Patrick.
Harvick, a three-time winner of the Sprint Unlimited (2009, 2010 and 2013), was the only SHR driver to finish the 75-lap race.
Stewart, driver of the No. 14 Mobil 1/Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet SS, was credited with an 11th-place finish. He earned his way into the race by being a three-time winner of the Sprint Unlimited (2001, 2002 and 2007).
Busch, driver of the No. 41 Haas Automation Chevrolet SS, finished 14th. He won the Sprint Unlimited in 2011.
Patrick, driver of the No. 10 GoDaddy Chevrolet SS, wound up 16th. Patrick earned a spot in the race by winning the pole for last year’s Daytona 500.
Denny Hamlin won the Sprint Unlimited. It was his second win in the non-points race, with his first victory coming in 2006.
Brad Keselowski finished .197 of a second behind Hamlin in the runner-up spot, while Kyle Busch, Joey Logano and Harvick rounded out the top-five. Jamie McMurray, Marcos Ambrose, Ryan Newman, Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Matt Kenseth comprised the remainder of the top-10.
There were five caution periods for 13 laps, with 10 drivers failing to finish.
Next up for SHR is qualifying for the 56th annual Daytona 500, where Harvick, Stewart, Busch and Patrick will be among 49 drivers going for the pole. Qualifying is set to get underway at 1 p.m. EST on Sunday, Feb. 16, with live coverage provided by FOX. The Budweiser Duel – twin 150-mile races that will set the rest of the Daytona 500 field – takes place at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 20, with live coverage on FOX Sports 1. Budweiser Speedweeks at Daytona then culminates with the Daytona 500 at 1 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 23, with live coverage provided by FOX beginning with its prerace show at noon.