Trevor Bayne, driver of the No.6 AdvoCare Ford Mustang passed 10 cars on the final lap of Friday evening’s NASCAR Nationwide Series (NNS) event at Daytona International Speedway to earn a ninth-place finish, his third-consecutive top-10 finish at the 2.5-mile oval.
“That was a crazy finish,” said Bayne after the race. “Green-white-checkered finishes are so intense. I just dove to the bottom and we were able to make some moves there at the end. We had a fast No.6 AdvoCare Ford Mustang all night long. We could draft with anyone out there and it felt great to be out front leading some laps. In the end, we got shuffled towards the back and had to work our way back up but I’m very happy to come home with another top-10 finish here at Daytona.”
After enacting a solid strategy with his fellow Roush Fenway Racing teammates, Bayne posted the second-fastest lap of the rain-shortened qualifying session and took the green flag for the 100-Lap event from the second position. Bayne wasted little time getting to the front, taking the race lead coming to the completion of Lap 1. After pacing the field for the opening seven laps, the driver of the No.6 AdvoCare Ford Mustang settled into the fourth position.
Bayne maintained his position inside the top five until the first round of green flag pit stops shuffled him back to seventh on Lap 36. After racing his way back into the top five, crew chief Chad Norris called Bayne to pit road during the first caution period of the night for fuel only on Lap 53. Returning to the track in fourth, Bayne and Richard Petty Motorsports rookie Dakoda Armstrong began to work together on the outside line in an attempt to reclaim the top-spot. While battling with Armstrong and Kyle Busch, Bayne was forced into a three-wide situation and shuffled out of the lead pack to the 24th position.
Bayne worked his way up to 17th as the caution flag was displayed for the second time on Lap 93. On the ensuing restart, Bayne narrowly avoided a multi-car incident in front of him as cars began to run out of fuel on the restart. The incident set up the first attempt at a green-white-checkered finish in which Bayne would restart in 16th and immediately jump to the outside line in the hopes of making his way towards the front.
After jostling for position in the middle of the pack, Bayne took the white flag in the 19th position. Heading into Turn 1 on the outside lane, Bayne dove to the middle and made a daring three-wide maneuver as the field made their way down the back straightaway.
Bayne then made his way down to the inside line heading into the third turn and began to push Roush Fenway Racing teammate Ryan Reed. Battling three-wide coming off of the final corner Bayne took the checkered flag in ninth, improving 10 positions in the final lap.
With the result, Bayne remains sixth in the championship standings and trails NNS leader Regan Smith by 59 points.