Jimmie Johnson triggers wreck, then wins Clash at Daytona

Chase Elliott won the 2016 Xfinity season opener for JR Motorsports. More

Chase Elliott won the 2016 Xfinity season opener for JR Motorsports. More

Jimmie Johnson and Chase Elliott make up the second row as part of the Hendrick top four sweep. In the offseason, Byron was paired up with Johnson's longtime crew chief Chad Knaus, while Johnson was paired with Kevin Meendering.

"Just really happy for a great day for Hendrick Motorsports...qualifying 3rd for the Daytona 500 then to win the Clash".

Menard wound up 13at the finish of race, which was called because of rain before it could be restarted following the Lap 55 "Big One".

"That's a pretty unbelievable feat, I feel", said longtime Hendrick crew chief Chad Knaus, who is entering his first season with Byron after 18 years with Johnson.

Johnson said the partnership was already off to a good start. "We're prepared. This is the first step of our process together". After splitting with Johnson at the end of last season, Knaus essentially repeated the feat with Byron.

Johnson got lucky as the bottom came out and they declared him the victor.

This year's Clash boasted a 20-driver field, with the previous season's pole winners joined by past Clash winners, past Daytona 500 winners and polesitters, and the playoff drivers from the previous season. Even with rain on the way and the race likely being called within a few laps from the time of the incident.

Kurt Busch finished second but thought he should've been declared the victor, as he disputed to NASCAR officials Johnson's move below the yellow line that gave Johnson the lead.

Chip Ganassi Racing's Kurt Busch finished the race in second place in his #1 Chevrolet while Team Penske teammates Joey Logano and Ryan Blaney finished in third and fourth place in their #22 Ford and #12 Ford, respectively, and Hendrick Motorsports' Alex Bowman finished in fifth in his #88 Chevrolet. "Jimmie pulled out I moved down a little bit and the next thing I know is I'm getting turned into the left rear", Menard said. Wood was 93 and had been the oldest living member of the NASCAR Hall of Fame when he died last month after a long illness.

The wreck occurred when Menard, leading the race in the outside line, inched down the track in an attempt to keep Johnson from passing for the lead.

"I felt like it was aggressive side-drafting", Menard said. I got that move inside of him and was hopeful the 1 (of Kurt Busch) was gonna be following me through. He was down at least 25 laps in five straight Clashes, and understands just how quickly a race at Daytona can change. "This is really special for me". "I got below him before he could block it".

This race was scheduled to be a 75-lap race around the four-turn, 2.5-mile (4.023-kilometer) high-banked Daytona International Speedway oval in Daytona Beach, Florida, but it was cut short to only 59 laps due to rain, which caused several caution flag periods throughout the race.

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