Ryan Blaney Miraculously Walks Away From Massive Crash During Daytona 500 Qualifying Race

Ryan Blaney crash NASCAR

Thank God for SAFER barriers.

The 2024 NASCAR season kicks off this weekend with the Daytona 500, and tonight the cars were on the track for the Bluegreen Vacations Duels to determine the starting lineup for the big race.

Defending Cup Series champion Ryan Blaney came into the season hoping to ride the momentum from last season. But he’ll be starting in the back of the pack on Sunday after taking a massive hit during the second duel race.

Blaney was racing near the front of the pack late in the race when William Byron (who happens to be dating Blaney’s sister Erin) threw a massive block. The move slowed Byron’s momentum and stacked up the field behind him, ultimately sending Kyle Busch into the back of Byron and sending Byron’s #24 car spinning – right into the side of Ryan Blaney.

Blaney’s #12 car then made a sharp right turn and hit the outside wall nearly head on before catching fire and coming to rest on the track apron.

Luckily, Blaney quickly dropped his window net and was able to climb from the car – but man, that hit looked brutal.

Honestly, that’s kind of hit looks eerily similar to the one that claimed the life of Dale Earnhardt back in the 2001 Daytona 500. But luckily, NASCAR has since made numerous safety improvements to not only the cars but also to the track, including the addition of the so-called SAFER (Steel and Foam Energy Reduction) barriers.

And Blaney’s no stranger to taking hard hits at Daytona: He suffered one that looked pretty similar during the summer race at Daytona last year.

For his part, Blaney was none too happy after the race – and after suffering from similar wrecks the last two times he’s been on track at Daytona, you can’t really blame the guy.

During an interview after the wreck, Blaney blamed the crashes on “awful pushes” from his fellow competitors.

I guess we’ll have to see if he can turn his Daytona luck around this weekend when the season kicks off at the Daytona 500.

A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock