Ryan Blaney Thieves NASCAR Victory at "Roval"
Ryan Blaney is 24 years old. He's been a professional driver in the NASCAR circuit since 2012 (age 18). If you're not familiar with NASCAR circuits, we'll explain what that means.
Blaney competed in the NASCAR Xfinity Series and the NASCAR Truck Series each of the last five years. Neither of those series are the "NASCAR" you're thinking of. They're sidebars to the real thing. And yeah, he amassed a few wins here and there (roughly one win per year), but he's only won once at the highest level -- the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series (2017).
Fast forward to Sunday…
It was the first-ever Bank of America Roval 400 at the Charlotte Motor Speedway. Confused about the word "roval"? That's a road-oval. Part road course. Part oval. The first of it's kind. And it's debut kicked off the initial round of NASCAR playoff eliminations.
As a day of complete carnage unfolded, drivers were sent to the garages one after another. Wreck by wreck the Charlotte race collected victims, and it would continue to do so until the end.
With the checkered flag out, veteran drivers Jimmie Johnson and Martin Truex Jr. were riding 1st and 2nd. On the final turn, Johnson spun, collected Truex, and Blaney blazed by. On the final turn!
Sunday's race narrowed the NASCAR playoff field to 12 drivers, with Blaney among the dozen names. Names like Busch, Keselowski, Boyer, Harvick, and Logano.
Every underdog needs a little luck sometimes.