The Chevrolet SS was etched into NASCAR® history at the DAYTONA 500®
There was no lack of anticipation for the first race of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series™ season. Speculation in the stands and in the broadcast booth was heavy as the new Gen 6 race cars arrived at the start for the first time. How would these new cars perform and how would it all play out on NASCAR’s grandest stage? Jimmie Johnson supplied his answer with a win at Daytona.
This story would be written in the history books, as Danica Patrick started from the pole position in the #10 Chevy SS, the first woman in NASCAR’s 64-year history to do so in any race. With the all-new production model Chevrolet SS pacing, Patrick, paired with Jeff Gordon in the #24 car, led an all-Chevy front row to the green flag.
Once the race began, NASCAR fans were able to see the production SS pacing its racing sibling. The unique body lines, front grille and side vents are nearly identical across the two cars, building a strong visual connection between the two, but the relationship for Chevy fans and drivers goes deeper than looks. Chevrolet is the only manufacturer to offer consumers a rear-wheel drive V8 configuration, an authentic production pair to its Gen 6 NASCAR entry.
Ultimately, the race ended with Jimmie Johnson capturing the first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series win for the season, Gen 6 race cars and the Chevrolet SS at the 55th running of the DAYTONA 500. In classic fashion, the #48 car jumped out to the front of the pack after a restart with just six laps to go. Dale Earnhardt, Jr. made a strong move during the final lap but finished second behind his Hendrick Motorsports teammate.
“Congratulations to Jimmie Johnson, (crew chief) Chad Knaus and (team owner) Rick Hendrick on their victory in The Great American Race,” said Jim Campbell, Chevrolet vice president of Performance Vehicles and Motorsports. “And for the Chevrolet SS to win its first points race is incredible. This is a culmination of a tremendous effort by our engineers, owners, drivers, crew chiefs and teams who worked together to develop the Chevrolet SS race car. So much hard work went into preparing the Chevrolet SS for competition in the Sprint Cup Series. We waited a long time for this race, and the performance of the No. 48 team made that wait worthwhile.”
Still, the DAYTONA 500 is only one race. We may have won on Sunday, but this is the beginning of a long season and a new generation of stock car racing. Our Team Chevy drivers, crews and engineers will continue to build, learn and innovate in order to produce better race cars, but also better production cars, trucks and SUVs for drivers everywhere to find new roads.