DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (AP) — NASCAR finally got the excitement it's been so desperately craving with two stirring battles to the finish in Thursday's two qualifying races for the Daytona 500. Jimmie Johnson nipped Kevin Harvick in a door-to-door battle across the finish line of the first qualifier, while Kasey Kahne edged Tony Stewart in the second race.
More drama played out off the track, as Michael Waltrip nervously watched the second qualifier to see if he'd get the help he needed to make what's expected to be the final Daytona 500 of his career. Waltrip wrecked in the first qualifier, and the two-time 500 winner watched from a television studio as Scott Speed used a late-race pass to earn the position needed to get Waltrip a spot in Sunday's race.
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