Matt Kenseth survives fire and rain to win Daytona 500

DAYTONA BEACH (Reuters) - Matt Kenseth won the Daytona 500 race on Monday, holding off Dale Earnhardt Jr on the final lap of a heavily delayed and incident-packed race.

Kenseth was helped by Ford team mate Greg Biffle, who helped slow down Earnhardt before crossing the line third in the NASCAR season opener.

The victory was Kenseth's second in the race following his 2009 triumph.

The race was postponed from Sunday due to rain and then for a further seven hours on Monday and finished at almost 1 a.m. local time.

A spectacular fire, when Colombian Juan Pablo Montoya hit a jet-dryer truck causing a large explosion, resulted in a two-hour five minute delay while the course was cleared for the final 40 laps.

(Reporting by Simon Evans; Editing by John O'Brien)