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Winning a restrictor-plate race is hard, unless you drive a Ford


during the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series 59th Annual Coke Zero 400 Powered By Coca-Cola at Daytona International Speedway on July 1, 2017 in Daytona Beach, Florida.

Sarah Crabill

It’s well established that winning a restrictor-plate race takes skill and an incredible amount of luck and you can run out of both in an instant at Daytona and Talladega.

Cup drivers will be thrown into the fire again this weekend with the Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona (7 p.m. ET Saturday on NBC).

When it comes to the two restrictor-plate tracks, Daytona has been the hardest to establish any consistency in recent years.

The last eight races at the 2.5-mile track have been won by eight different drivers.

The streak began with the July 2014 race, which was rain-shortened and won by Aric Almirola. It continued in February with Austin Dillon’s win in the Daytona 500 after he turned Almirola on the last lap.

Those eight races have been won by: Almirola, Joey Logano, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Denny Hamlin, Brad Keselowski, Kurt Busch, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and Dillon.

Of those eight wins, that last six were by different teams: Hendrick Motorsports, Joe Gibbs Racing, Team Penske, Stewart-Haas Racing, Roush Fenway Racing and Richard Childress Racing.

The July race itself has proven impossible for drivers to repeat as winners. The last eight races, beginning with Kevin Harvick in 2010, have been won by eight different drivers.

When it comes to winning races at both Daytona and Talladega in the last few years, consistency can only be found in one place: Ford.

The blue oval has been on the winning car in eight of the last nines plate races, with Dillon’s win breaking that streak up.

Those victories have been divided among four drivers: Keselowski (three wins), Logano (two wins), Stenhouse (two wins) and Busch (one win).

Logano and Keselowski have helped Team Penske to win eight of the last 15 plate races. It is the only team to win more than two times in the last 17 plate races.

A Penske car has led the most laps in seven of the last nine plate races.