It took about 10 minutes to wreck several cars at Daytona International Speedway on Friday.
Matt Kenseth triggered a five-car accident in the opening practice for the Sprint Unlimited, the non-points race that kicks off the season.
Kenseth, Kurt Busch, Carl Edwards, Mark Martin and Juan Pablo Montoya were involved in the crash.
Busch's No. 78 Chevrolet sustained the most damage, forcing the team to switch to a backup car for Saturday night's exhibition event.
Busch said: "It's tough. A lot of hard work goes into these cars, and six weeks of preparation can be trashed in six laps."
Kenseth took blame for the melee, saying he didn't see Busch gaining ground inside him on the 2 1/2-mile superspeedway.