Last updated: June 01. 2013 7:57AM - 91 Views
Nathan Ham
Sports Writer

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Jimmie Johnson led the final seven laps of the Daytona 500, and held off a late charge from Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Mark Martin to win his second career 500.

Brad Keselowski, who was involved in an accident earlier in the race, had battled his way back and was leading, until a caution with 10 laps left. Johnson, however, was ruled to be in front of Keselowski and was able to line up on the outside row, the preferred spot for anyone to be.

On the final lap, Earnhardt Jr. and Martin broke out of line and drove hard inside of Greg Biffle and Danica Patrick, moving into second and third place. However, Johnson was able to hold them off for the last 100 yards to get the win.

Matt Kenseth, who led the most laps of the day, quite possibly had the car to beat, but saw his day come to an end with an engine problem. The same can be said for teammate Kyle Busch who also saw his day cut short with equipment troubles.

The biggest wreck of the day happened on lap 34 when a trio of contenders were involved in a seven-car tangle when Busch got into Kasey Kahne and sent him into the wall, which collected Kevin Harvick and Tony Stewart deeper in the field. Stewart will continue his search for his first ever Daytona 500 win next year. He has won 19 races at Daytona, but has yet to score the biggest win of all in 15 attempts at the 500.

Patrick, who made her much-anticipated Sprint Cup Daytona 500 debut, finished in eighth place, the highest finish ever for a woman in the event.

The Sprint Cup drivers will now turn their attention to the west coast at Phoenix International Raceway. The green flag will drop next Sunday at 3 p.m.

Final rundown:

1. Jimmie Johnson

2. Dale Earnhardt Jr.

3. Mark Martin

4. Brad Keselowski

5. Ryan Newman

6. Greg Biffle

7. Regan Smith

8. Danica Patrick

9. Michael McDowell

10. J.J. Yeley

11. Clint Bowyer

12. Ricky Stenhouse Jr.

13. Aric Almirola

14. Denny Hamlin

15. Bobby Labonte

16. David Reutimann

17. Dave Blaney

18. Marcos Ambrose

19. Joey Logano

20. Jeff Gordon

21. Paul Menard

22. Michael Waltrip

23. Scott Speed

24. Martin Truex Jr.

25. Travis Kvapil

26. Terry Labonte

27. Trevor Bayne

28. Kurt Busch

29. Casey Mears

30. Jeff Burton

31. Austin Dillon

32. Jamie McMurray

33. Carl Edwards

34. Kyle Busch

35. David Ragan

36. Kasey Kahne

37. Matt Kenseth

38. David Gilliland

39. Juan Pablo Montoya

40. Josh Wise

41. Tony Stewart

42. Kevin Harvick

43. Joe Nemechek

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