Sunday, July 14, 2024

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“I’m all smiles” after fighting for victory in Chicago Cup

Hand, 45, won the category and overall within the Rolex 24 at Daytona endurance race. Although he’s an experienced race automobile driver, NASCAR continues to be recent to him.

Sunday was just his eighth profession Cup start, driving a part-time automobile for RFK Racing often called Stage 60. There wasn’t much buzz surrounding Hand, who qualified thirty eighth. But when rain hit the track and the race descended into chaos, Hand and the No. 60 team were capable of capitalize in a giant way.

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He was already quite high up the grid but decided to remain on his aging wet tyres on a drying track while many of the other competitors were taking a pit stop. He actually won the second stage and led the ultimate 20 minutes of the race.

Though he fought hard, he couldn’t fend off Alex Bowman’s No. 48 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet. While Bowman took the win, Hand ultimately finished fourth. It was still an enormous accomplishment for the veteran sports automobile driver. His best Cup finish before Sunday was a Twentieth-place finish at Sonoma Raceway in 2022.

Joey Hand, RFK Racing, BuildSubmarines.com Ford Mustang

Joey Hand, RFK Racing, BuildSubmarines.com Ford Mustang

Photo: Danny Hansen / NKP / Motorsports images

“It was a great day,” Hand said after the race. “I’m all smiles. It was loads of fun. It’s loads of fun when you could have a automobile that’s going to the front. RFK, that Stage 60 automobile and that group of men and girls were awesome. We had an amazing time together. We didn’t qualify well, but I told them we were lots higher. I used to be lying in bed last night and I dreamed about being within the front.

“It was loads of fun. I like that form of environment where everyone has to seek out a distinct way and there's no set plan of what you're going to do. I've won loads of races like that in my life. I assumed there was a likelihood to win one other one, which was going to be huge. To finish fourth, starting thirty eighth, in that automobile, was loads of fun.

“What can you say? We went to the front and I'm happy about that.”

Hand ultimately led a complete of seven laps and was the Ford driver at the highest of the finish line. Earlier this 12 months, RFK competed in Stage 60 at Sonoma with Supercars star Cam Waters, who finished thirty fifth after being caught in a crash. They also drove the automobile within the season-opening Daytona 500 with David Ragan, who finished Twentieth.

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