If you’re looking for one of the all-time upsets at Daytona, Michael McDowell isn’t it.  Unexpected?  Yes.  Longer odd than most?  Yes. But, not a total surprise.

We talk a lot about Daytona and Talladega being the races that level the playing field.  The races where the “little guys” have a chance to compete with the well-funded teams.  But, the truth of the matter is: while they may have been more competitive with them, they still haven’t been beating them.

Until this week.

But, to call McDowell’s win “out of the blue’…that would be ignoring his record at Daytona.  Since the 2016 Daytona 500, he has now run 11 races on the oval and finished outside of the top-15 just once.  That time he was caught up in a wreck (after leading 20 laps).  He also has five top-10s in that span including this year’s win.

So, give the young man some props, he didn’t just happen to be in the right place at the right time, he’d worked for that.

Yet to see the pure joy of a man in Victory Lane for the first time in 358 races.  That’s priceless.