Tuesday, February 20, 2018
Sports

Car issues put Biffle, Bayne in back of field for Daytona qualifying

DAYTONA BEACH — Roush Fenway Racing teammates Greg Biffle and Trevor Bayne will start in the back of the field in their Daytona 500 qualifying race tonight.

Both of their teams changed rear gears after issues Wednesday, an adjustment that caused them to lose their qualifying spots for the Cam-Am Duels (7, Fox Sports 1).

Biffle and Bayne are in the first of the two races. They will join 2007 Daytona 500 winner Kevin Harvick in the back of the 22-car field.

Harvick and Stewart-Haas Racing teammate Brian Vickers were forced to the back of the field after NASCAR officials determined the track bars on their cars were not in compliance with specifications after pole qualifying Sunday.

Vickers and Martin Truex Jr., who failed to make a qualifying lap Sunday, will start in the back of the second race.

Larson moves to backup: Kyle Larson switched to a backup car after being involved in a crash during Daytona 500 practice.

Larson was involved in a multicar accident in the second practice session, a pileup that occurred after Ty Dillion cracked an oil cooler between Turns 1 and 2 at Daytona International Speedway.

Dillon spewed oil on the track and on other drivers' windshields, and as cars behind him tried to slow, two-time Daytona 500 champion Michael Waltrip ran into the back of Ryan Newman. Both cars spun, and Waltrip hit the outside wall. He was transported to the infield care center, evaluated and released.

Larson and Chris Buescher also were caught up in the mess, and the damage to Larson's car was bad enough that his team opted to move to the backup.

Michael McDowell, who needs to race his way into the Daytona 500 in one of the two qualifying races tonight, posted the fastest lap in the early practice. McDowell reached 200.173 mph, a tick faster than Bayne, Biffle and Ricky Stenhouse.

Brian Scott topped the second practice, reaching 199.800 mph. Austin Dillon was second, followed by Kyle Busch, Jimmie Johnson and Paul Menard.

Logano, Kenseth ready to move on: Would Joey Logano and Matt Kenseth like to bury their differences of last season deep in the past? Absolutely.

Kenseth was suspended for two races late last season after wrecking Logano in Martinsville and dealing a serious blow to his championship hopes, a move made in retaliation for Logano spinning Kenseth out of the lead two weeks earlier.

"No, we are fine," Logano said. "I would say we are at a neutral spot. To be honest with you, what we talked about at Homestead (at the season finale) last year, I felt like I got everything off my chest, and hopefully he did. I don't know if he did or not, but I feel like I have a clear conscience and I am moving forward."

A couple of hours later, Kenseth said he had an interesting offseason, the best he has had, seeing more support and passion from fans than in his whole career "by tenfold." But the 2003 Spring Cup champion also sounded like he'd rather be talking about other topics.

"It's water under the bridge," Kenseth said. "New year."

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