A 16-car crash at the Talladega Speedway Sunday marred the Aaron’s 499 race, and involved racers Jeff Gordon and Danica Patrick, among others. (Photo : YouTube)
A huge car wreck made a big difference at the Talladega Speedway Sunday as 16 cars were caught up in the wreckage.
The car wreck started when rookie Ricky Stenhouse Jr., tried to get to the front of the pack on the outside line. Upon that, he hit J.J. Yeley's car, which crashed into Kurt Busch's vehicle, which did a frightening flip and afterwards came down hard on the top of the car driven by Ryan Newman.
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In all, 16 cars were involved in the wreck, including high profile names such as Danica Patrick, Jeff Gordon, and Clint Boyer.
"We were trying to win the race," Yeley told ESPN. "I got hit in the right-rear quarter (panel). It looked like Stenhouse went to the outside and there wasn't enough room."
In all, when the dust settled, it was David Ragan, a seven-year veteran of the Sprint Cup Series, who walked away with a win after passing Carl Edwards on a last lap pass to win the Aaron's 499.
The win was only the second-ever Sprint Cup win for Ragan, 27, after winning the July 2011 Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway.
"This is a true David vs. Goliath moment here," Ragan told USA Today Sports.
However, with the joy that Ragan felt also came frustration and questions from other racers, including Newman, after NASCAR officials decided to continue the race in spine of a three-hour rain delay. Other drivers involved in the race also complained of fatigue and being unable to see the track at the end of the day due to the absence of lights at the track.
"They can build safer race cars, they can build safer walls, but they can't keep them on the race track, and that's pretty disappointing," Newman said after the race in a press statement. "I wanted to make sure I get that point across, and y'all can figure out who 'they' is."