How Kyle Larson and Chase Elliott Hype Overshadow William Byron’s Talent and Acts as Fuel for the Daytona 500 Winner

Gowtham Ramalingam

William Byron is the man of the hour and his #24 Chevrolet Camaro is the hottest piece of equipment in the Hendrick Motorsports (HMS) garage after Monday’s Daytona 500. With the spotlight directly on the 26-year-old, and deservedly so, he took the post-race mic and talked about how his motivation to win is fuelled by his teammates who are considered more popular and skilled than him.

He acknowledged that he was the “other guy” when people talked of the HMS roster which includes Cup Series champions, Chase Elliott and Kyle Larson. However, being side-lined isn’t something that affects him a lot. He said, “Yeah, I use it all as fuel, go just keep it coming. All the preseason predictions and everything.”

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He continued, “I just try to stay quietly focused. I feel like for me, I do well having my own space and being able to work through things with my race team.” His mindset is centered on balancing calmness and voicing out thoughts to make the HMS team better. While he is aware that he is never going to be the most vocal guy in the garage, he is plenty satisfied with it.

He concluded, “I just enjoy getting in the race car and putting the helmet on and going to work. That’s what I’ve always lived for.” With an unimpressive track record in the event, Byron carried one of the lowest odds amongst his teammates to win the Daytona 500. However, it was he who took the checkered flag at the end of the 500 miles.

How William Byron and Alex Bowman completed a 1-2 finish for Hendrick Motorsports

Monday’s race was no short of action. With wrecks filling the field right from stage 1, Byron and Alex Bowman found themselves ahead of their counterparts in the final laps of the day. Byron was engaged in racing Ross Chastain and Austin Cindric when the duo got involved in a wreck that sent them crashing out. Thankfully for Byron, he’d just taken the white flag when officials called for caution.

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With the race then fixed to end in green or caution, Byron held his lead with Bowman at his heels. The two drivers who went in with the lowest odds ended up giving HMS its best finish in the Daytona 500 since Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s win in 2014. Meanwhile, Byron’s teammate Chase Elliott won the first stage and finished the day in 14th position and Kyle Larson was slightly ahead at 11th.

Post Edited By:Srijan Mandal

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About the author

Gowtham Ramalingam

Gowtham Ramalingam

Gowtham is a NASCAR journalist at The Sports Rush. Though his affinity for racing stems from Formula 1, he found himself drawn to NASCAR's unparalleled excitement over the years. As a result he has shared his insights and observations by authoring over 350 articles on the sport. An avid fiction writer, you can find him lost in imaginary worlds when he is not immersed in racing. He hopes to continue savoring the thrill of every lap and race together with his readers for as long as he can.

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