2011 Gatorade Duel At Daytona: Kurt Busch Wins First Race

Kurt Busch won the first of two Gatorade Duels today as he held off Regan Smith at the finish line, remaining perfect so far in Daytona Speedweeks.

Busch was leading Smith on a green-white-checkered finish, and Smith looked to dart out and pass Busch at the last second. But Busch anticipated the move and sent Smith down to the yellow line, staying ahead of Busch for his second Daytona victory in less than a week (Busch also won Saturday night's Bud Shootout).

The celebration was also on for JJ Yeley – who earned one of the two transfer spots – and Michael Waltrip, who didn't race but made the Daytona 500 field when Bill Elliott took the other transfer spot (yes, it's complicated).

Because Dale Earnhardt Jr. will drop to the back at the start of the Daytona 500, Kurt Busch will have the inside line and will become the starter for the race.

Here are the results for the first Gatorade Duel, which set the bottom lane for the race:

  1. Kurt Busch
  2. Regan Smith
  3. Kevin Harvick
  4. Matt Kenseth
  5. Kasey Kahne
  6. Juan Pablo Montoya
  7. AJ Allmendinger
  8. Mark Martin
  9. Paul Menard
  10. Ryan Newman
  11. Jimmie Johnson
  12. Tony Stewart
  13. Dale Earnhardt Jr.
  14. Brian Vickers
  15. Bill Elliott
  16. Bobby Labonte
  17. JJ Yeley
  18. Kevin Conway
  19. Joe Nemechek
  20. Dave Blaney
  21. Marcos Ambrose
  22. Andy Lally
  23. Michael McDowell
  24. David Gilliland
– Names in BOLD were trying to make Daytona 500 field via transfer spot
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