In a long history littered with unlikely upheavals and winners, Justin Haley's victory could be considered the biggest NASCAR disaster.
But we can also remember that as the beginning of something big, as was the case for some other locks of the Blue Cup Series.
In only his third start in the Cup (and the 18th Beginning in the first season of Spire Motorsports), Haley was leading for one lap – the only lap he led in his career – when the Coke Zero Sugar 400 was stopped Sunday due to bad weather.
The 20-year-old from Winamac, Indiana, Kual Busch took the lead when Kurt Busch made the first lap on a scheduled lap on the 127th lap. A little over two hours later, after several stops for lightning and rain, Haley was declared the winner.
LONG: The signs were there for Haley's bomb
He became the first driver to win a career race since Brad Keselowski made his first victory on April 26, 2009 at Talladega Superspeedway.
Keselowski is one of the many Cup winners as unexpected as Haley on Sunday in Daytona.
Keselowski is also a good example of those who then created a much larger legacy.
Here are some of the biggest upsets of the first NASCAR series over the past 20 years (meaning we're missing some of the memorable Xfinity series and truck surprises like David Gilliland at Kentucky Speedway in 2006):
2016 Pennsylvania 400: In the first NASCAR race shortened by fog for more than 40 years, Chris Buescher led the last 12 laps by staying on the track after many clashes during a green flag cycle.
The rookie won his 27th Early career in cup and catapulted in a playoff spot that was a seven-figure bargain for Front Row Motorsports.
"It will change our whole year here," he said. "We won here, so we'll take it in any way we can."
2013 Aaron's 499David Ragan and David Gilliland, two teammates of Front Row Motorsports, finished first and second, starting in the fourth row after a two-lap overtime recovery ending a race that was delayed by rain for more than three hours.
"It's a real moment between David and Goliath," said Ragan, who gave Carl Edwards a final lap for the second victory of his career (after his victory at Daytona in July 2011).
The victory was popular among well-funded teams who were defeated for a rare moment. Jimmie Johnson answered "Impressive" following Ragan's victory on the radio. Kevin Harvick tweeted that it was "what NASCAR is all about !!!"
"As frustrated as I am by this defeat, I'm really happy for (Ragan and Gilliland)," Edwards said.
"I see how hard teams have to work hard to compete at this level. It really could not happen to two of the best guys. "
500 South of 2011"We're not supposed to win this game!" Said Regan Smith to his team after winning his only win in the first NASCAR series.
Earning his first career victory in a signature race on one of NASCAR's toughest circuits (it was 23 years since the last winner of the Darlington Cup, Lake Speed) was no longer a feat. It was also the first victory for Furniture Row Racing, which was in its second full season and years before becoming a championship contender.
But what is most impressive is Smith's victory: to inherit the head by remaining cautious, then push Edwards (who had new tires) in two late raises. Smith slammed the Turn 2 wall in the final lap while keeping the gas wide open to join the list of legendary Southern 500 winners, including David Pearson, Dale Earnhardt, Richard Petty, Bill Elliott, Jeff Gordon, Cale Yarborough, Bobby Allison and Darrell Waltrip. .
"I do not know if my name deserves to be next to them, but after tonight, it may be the case," said Smith, who would no longer win in Cup, but has become an eternal winner and a title contender at Xfinity.
Daytona 500 2011: One day after turning 20, Trevor Bayne won the Great American Race at the second start of his Cup career. A perfect mix of new blood and old school, it was the first Daytona 500 victory for the venerable number 21 of Wood Brothers Racing since Pearson beat Petty in a 1976 classic.
Bayne's performance at Daytona International Speedway was almost as sublime. While many Cup stars were struggling to adapt to the tandem editorial phenomenon, the native of Knoxville, Tennessee, has made many attempts to avoid many wrecks and to pay a last charge by the second, Edwards.
"If I tried to express it in words, I could not do it justice," said Bayne, who radioed "Am I dreaming?" To his team after passing the checkered flag flag.rd Daytona 500 will become the youngest winner of the race.
That would be the only Cup victory for Bayne, who ran full-time in the best NASCAR series in 2015. Her best career points standings were 22North Dakotaand he left the series after last season.
Coca-Cola 600 2009: David Reutimann was in 14th when he stayed on track at the Charlotte Motor Speedway and inherited his first lead right after the half-race of the longest race of the season.
Five laps later, NASCAR stopped the race and after two hours of intermittent rain, Reutimann was named the winner for the first time. The most remarkable thing he did during the first 300 kilometers of the race was Tony Stewart's anger, with some blocking maneuvers.
"It certainly was not the prettiest, but you have to win," said Michael Waltrip Racing, who had six top-10 finishes in the previous 74 and failed to qualify for 10 races two years earlier. "We could as well take a bet."
Who made the genius call?
A team leader named Rodney Childers.
2009 Aaron's 499: At his fifth start in the Cup, Brad Keselowski drove with the verve of a veteran and never as much as on the last lap at Talladega Superspeedway when he maintained his straight line while Edwards reduced him with a block that turned against him.
The contact sent Edwards' Ford into the rift (scattered debris that injured seven fans) and presented to NASCAR the bitter resolution of 25-year-old Keselowski, then a relatively unknown funded and part-time owner of the car, James Finch, his only victory. 251 begins.
"It's the NASCAR race at its best," said Keselowski. "It was a big show … There must be an element of danger … Who does not like watching football players hit each other as fast as they can?" That's what Want fans: Contact If we had run all contactless shopping, someone would have written how boring it was. "
The first start of the season of the Keselowski Cup did not miss the action. Keselowski admitted that he had almost destroyed the ground after a shock from Dale Earnhardt Jr. had let him point fingers but he added, "But you do not have time to be scared. How do you say? "I do not have time to bleed"? You better leave, and if you're afraid, it's not the right place, because it's when you make bad decisions. "
The five-time winner of Talladega has often proved to be making the right decision in the three-dimensional chess game of the track … but 10 years ago, it was amazing to be so good in its infancy.
2002 UAW-GM Quality 500This is how the next five weeks went for Jamie McMurray.
Hired to drive full-time for Chip Ganassi Racing in 2003 … appointed less than a month later as injured. The replacement of Sterling Marlin for the last seven races of the 2002 season … sets a record at the second start of his career in the Cup by imposing Charlotte Motor Speedway, his worst self-proclaimed track in NASCAR.
"Everyone is asking me if I'm nervous," said McMurray after leading 87 of the last 106 laps to Charlotte and defeated Bobby Labonte (one of the best on the 1.5 mile oval at this time). time). "Yes, I'm panicked!"
Joplin, Missouri, the escape from the darkness of the native was even more amazing: his first win in the Cup before his first win in the Xfinity series, where he had three top five in 64 career debut to date. He quickly won two victories in the last five races of the Xfinity season, proving just how confident a driver can be.
"They took a chance on me," McMurray said of the team's co-owners, Chip Ganassi and Felix Sabates, after Charlotte's victory. "They put me in first class equipment and I made the most of it."
Ganassi said, "It's validated now. Today, many of these young people have talent and everyone is fast. I look at the heart. Jamie has a lot of heart. "