Daytona Beach, FL (SportsNetwork.com/WSYR-TV) - Regan Smith, of Cato, NY, beat Brad Keselowski in a photo finish to win Saturday's 300-mile Nationwide Series season-opener at Daytona International Speedway.
A caution in the closing laps set up a green-white-checkered finish. Keselowski held the lead for the final two-lap restart, but Smith, using the outside lane, pulled ahead of Keselowski just before they approached the finish line. Smith beat him by 0.013 seconds to claim his fourth career Nationwide victory, including his first at Daytona.
Smith, a Nationwide regular, is in his second full season as driver of the No. 7 Chevrolet for JR Motorsports, a team co-owned by Sprint Cup Series superstar Dale Earnhardt Jr. Last year, Smith won two races, including Talladega, a track similar to Daytona, and finished third in the Nationwide point standings.
Trevor Bayne finished third, followed by Kyle Busch, who won Friday night's Camping World Truck Series race at Daytona. Elliott Sadler was fifth.
One year ago, Smith held the lead during the final lap of the Nationwide season-opener at Daytona, but Smith was hit from behind by Keselowski. His car slammed into the outside wall on the frontstretch, collecting several drivers running behind him in a tight pack. Kyle Larson flipped around and sailed into the catchfence. Flying debris from Larson's car and the fence injured dozens of spectators in the grandstands.
There were no major crashes in this year's race. However, several drivers spun and wrecked after they had crossed the finish line.
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