Aric Almirola wins rain-shortened Coke Zero 400 - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

Aric Almirola wins rain-shortened Coke Zero 400

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DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (AP) - Aric Almirola has won the rain-delayed and rain-shortened NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Daytona International Speedway, putting Richard Petty's famed No. 43 in Victory Lane for the first time since 1999.

Almirola's unexpected win came on the same weekend Petty celebrated the 30th anniversary of his 200th win.

Petty wasn't around for the festivities, having already left Daytona during one of the many delays. He didn't miss much considering steady rain put a slight damper on the post-race party.

Almirola's Crew Chief Trent Owens grew up just a few miles from Darlington Raceway and With consecutive top-10 finishes in the last five seasons as crew chief, Almirola can finally add a Sprint Cup series win to the list.

The Coke Zero 400 was originally scheduled to go off Saturday night, but steady rain forced it to be postponed a day. When it did finally get started Sunday, it was interrupted several more times.

There were three red flags, two of them because of huge accidents that took out most of the 43-car field and several top contenders.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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