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Ryan Blaney set to make 200th Cup start at Daytona

Ryan Blaney, the Team Penske driver, is set to make his 200th Cup Series start on Feb. 21 on the Daytona Road Course. Photo/Getty Images
Ryan Blaney, the Team Penske driver, is set to make his 200th Cup Series start on Feb. 21 on the Daytona Road Course. Photo/Getty Images
ANALYST
Modified 21 Feb 2021
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Ryan Blaney is set to make the 200th start of his NASCAR Cup Series career at the Daytona Road Course event on Sunday.

The Hartford Township, Ohio, native made his Cup Series debut at Kansas Speedway in May 2014 and is into his sixth full-time season in the NASCAR Cup Series. He finds it hard to believe he has come this far already.

"Hard to believe I’ve made 200 Cup Series starts," Ryan Blaney said. "Feels like it was just yesterday I was making my debut at Kansas in 2014. I’ve been very fortunate to have great teams like Penske and the Wood Brothers to allow me to be where I am now. Certainly hoping for many more great years, wins, and championships in the future."

Ryan Blaney, the driver of Team Penske's No. 12 Ford Mustang, started on the pole for this season's Busch Clash but a late tangle with current Cup champion Chase Elliott on the last lap left him finishing in 13th place.

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He also had a 30th-place result from the Daytona 500 after being involved in a multicar crash early in the race.

Also Read: Who won the 2021 NASCAR Busch Clash?

What to expect from Ryan Blaney on Daytona Road Course

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Ryan Blaney gearing up for the Daytona Road Course race. Photo/Getty Images
Ryan Blaney gearing up for the Daytona Road Course race. Photo/Getty Images

Ryan Blaney has a good record on road courses with seven top-10 finishes in his last 10 road-course outings, including a win at the Charlotte Roval in 2018.

Apart from the last-lap fiasco in the Clash, the fact that he made a comeback from behind to take the lead gives the 27-year-old confidence.

Ryan Blaney also has a road-course win in 2014 in the Camping World Truck Series.

Also Read: Roush becomes first carbon-neutral team at Daytona

Ryan Blaney career before joining Team Penske

Ryan Blaney
Ryan Blaney's first-ever Cup Series victory came at Pocono Raceway. Photo/Getty Images

Ryan Blaney finished 27th in his Cup Series debut. Five months later, he made his second start at Talladega Superspeedway, where he ended up finishing 22nd.

In 2015, Blaney ran a part-time schedule for Wood Brothers Racing. He registered two top-10 finishes, including a season-best fourth-place finish at Talladega in May.

Wood Brothers Racing returned as a full-time Cup Series team in 2016 and Ryan Blaney was named its full-time driver. He took the driving duties for the iconic No. 21 Ford and notched up four top-5s and nine top-10s, finishing the season 20th in points. He just missed winning the Rookie of The Year award, finishing second to Chase Elliott.

You might also like: Daytona Road Course predictions

Ryan Blaney kickstarted 2017 with a second-place season in the season-opening Daytona 500. In his 68th Cup Series start the same year, Blaney achieved his first-ever Cup Series victory, winning at Pocono Raceway.

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The 27-year-old joined Team Penske in 2018 to pilot the No. 12 Ford and registered his first win with the team in the Bank of America Roval 400 at Charlotte. He also went past 100 Cup career starts in the same year.

Also Read: Daytona Road Course lineup: Chase Elliott on pole

Published 21 Feb 2021, 23:00 IST
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