- Associated Press - Thursday, February 23, 2012

DAYTONA BEACH, FLA. (AP) - Tony Stewart has won the first qualifying race for the Daytona 500.

The defending NASCAR champion held off Dale Earnhardt Jr. in Thursday’s first 150-mile race. The last lap was marred by an accident involving Danica Patrick.

Patrick was hit by Aric Almirola and the contact sent her car sliding across the track and into an inside retaining wall. The contact lifted her Chevrolet off its wheels, but she was able to climb from the car unscathed.

Michael McDowell and Robby Gordon were the drivers who raced their way into Sunday’s season-opening Daytona 500.

Two-time Daytona 500 winner Michael Waltrip wrecked as he tried to return to the track after a late pit stop. The accident eliminated him from Sunday’s race.

Copyright © 2018 The Washington Times, LLC.

The Washington Times Comment Policy

The Washington Times is switching its third-party commenting system from Disqus to Spot.IM. You will need to either create an account with Spot.im or if you wish to use your Disqus account look under the Conversation for the link "Have a Disqus Account?". Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.

 

Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide