Jimmie Johnson drove his #48 Chevrolet to victory in the 48th running of "The Great American Race" on Sunday. The irony didn't stop with the numerical coincidence, though.
Johnson's crew chief, Chad Knaus, had been ejected from the racetrack earlier in the week and banned from participating in the 500 after post-qualifying inspection revealed a rules violation. In the post-race interview, Johnson praised Knaus for his contributions in getting the team to victory lane. Meanwhile, third-place finisher Ryan Newman complained loudly about being beaten by cheaters. (For the record, Johnson's Chevy survived a three-hour post race inspection by NASCAR officials.)
Tony Stewart, last week's poster-boy for safe and sane driving, managed to finish fifth, despite admitting to purposely (and obviously) punting Matt Kenseth into the infield at 190 mph, in retaliation for a bump by Kenseth earlier in the race.
The next race in NASCAR's high-speed soap opera is at California Speedway, next weekend. Full coverage of the Daytona 500 is available at nascar.com.