Kevin Harvick overcame a bout with the flu and a wrecked race car to earn his second consecutive victory in the exhibition Budweiser Shootout on Saturday night.
Too ill to travel to Daytona International Speedway for the opening of Speedweeks, Harvick turned his Chevrolet over to Richard Childress Racing teammate Clint Bowyer for the first practice of the season. But Bowyer was caught in an early accident that destroyed the No. 29 and forced the team to pull out its backup.
Jeff Burton practiced that car for Harvick, who was in Daytona and feeling well enough to drive in the race.
Although he led late, a caution for Michael Waltrip's wreck with five laps remaining muddled what was shaping up to be a sure win. Greg Biffle and Kasey Kahne stayed on the track during the caution, and Harvick led most of the 24-car field onto pit road.
He was in fourth when the race restarted with two laps to go, but quickly pulled out of line to dive underneath Biffle and claim the lead. He was pulling away when Jeff Gordon rammed into the back of Biffle, triggering an eight-car accident behind the leader.
NASCAR waited several moments before calling caution, presumably to see if the wreckage cleared and the race could end under green. Instead, Harvick passed under the yellow flag and won under caution.
"I've got to thank my team," Harvick said. "They did a great job. Wrecked a car in practice, I was sick on Thursday, didn't even get to sit a lap in this thing and that thing was a rocket, man."
It was Harvick's first victory since his Shootout win last year. He hasn't won a points race since his 2007 victory here in the season-opening Daytona 500.
Kasey Kahne was second and followed by Jamie McMurray, Kyle Busch and Denny Hamlin.
Brian Vickers was sixth, Joey Logano grabbed seventh, and Gordon, Tony Stewart and Juan Pablo Montoya rounded out the top 10.
The race had high expectations because of NASCAR's offseason decision to loosen up the rules and allow bump-drafting. The message sent to drivers was "Have at it, boys," and most everyone expected a wild race from start to finish.
Instead, it was fairly calm and most of the activity was single-car accidents.
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