Michael McDowell’s first career NASCAR Cup Series win was a huge one.
Born and raised in Glendale, Mr. McDowell won the 63rd running of the Daytona 500 on Feb. 14 in Florida. The win came in his 358th start, and the race featured a multi-car crash on the final lap.
“It’s gonna be a great year. We’re gonna celebrate all year long,” the 36-year-old said on his Facebook page after capturing the milestone race, where he also gave a shout-out to those closest to him. “Everybody back home, at the shop, my guys.”
The 13-year NASCAR veteran drives the No. 34 Ford for Front Row Motorsports. He is in his fourth season with Front Row having joined the team prior to the 2018 season.
Mr. McDowell’s Cup Series win comes in the 2021 season opener. His best result prior to that was a fourth-place finish at Daytona International Speedway in 2017.
He also has a win in the NASCAR Xfinity Series -- 2016 at Road America.
He was still feeling the moment a day later.
“Running on pure adrenaline,” Mr. McDowell tweeted Monday. “Last night was a night that has been a longtime in the making and it still hasn’t truly sunk in.
He calls ISM Raceway, 7602 Jimmie Johnson Drive, Avondale, his home track.