Denny Hamlin started from the pole by way of a random draw in Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series Dixie Vodka 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway, but it looked like it would by Ryan Blaney who would go on to win Stage 1.
Blaney led a Stage-high 39 laps, but with four laps remaining in the Stage, Hamlin snookered Blaney and took the lead.
Hamlin would go on to win the Stage by just under a second.
Rookie Tyler Reddick impressed as he went from 24th at the start of the race to finish third in Stage 1. Reddick won at Homestead in 2018 and 2019 in the Xfinity Series to claim the championship in both years.
Chase Elliott and Aric Almirola finished fourth and fifth in Stage 1.
Brad Keselowski, Alex Bowman, William Byron, Clint Bowyer and Chris Buescher rounded out the top-10 finishers in the opening Stage.
Joey Logano led 27 laps and looked to be the dominant car in the Stage, but during a set of pit stops, Logano slammed into the back of rookie Quin Houff, which damaged the front of the No. 22 car. Logano faded to finish 20th in Stage 1.
Kevin Harvick (14th) and Matt DiBenedetto (26th) also incurred damage during that set of pit stops.
The race was red flagged twice for weather in Stage 1 for a total of more than two hours and 40 minutes.
Stage and Playoff Points Awarded in Stage 1:
|Finish||Driver||Stage Points||Playoff Points|
Toby is the Founder, Editor and go-to man for TobyChristie.com. He is also the co-host of The Final Lap Weekly Podcast. Additionally, Toby is a NMPA (National Motorsports Press Association) award winning writer, and has followed NASCAR as a fan since 1993.