The Daytona 500 resumed following a one hour and 42 minute red flag halt to repair a hole that had opened up in the track, but was then stopped again with 39 laps to go when another hole developed.
The problem had developed between Turns 1 and 2, causing punctures on John Andretti and Jimmie Johnson's cars, and leading to the former crashing. NASCAR officials had initially hoped that the problem could be fixed rapidly, but the resin course workers were using to plug the hole stubbornly refused to set at first as the ground remained moist following heavy rain in recent weeks.
Almost two hours after the red flag was shown, the problem was finally resolved and the drivers returned to their cars to complete the remaining 78 laps. The racing resumed with Clint Bowyer leading to the green flag, but then was red flagged again at 161 laps when a second hole developed, with Kevin Harvick leading Juan Pablo Montoya. NASCAR intends to continue the race as soon as the new hole is patched.
Kyle Busch said the hole had fully reopened during the 39 laps run between red flags.
"It stayed really good for about 18 laps and then you could see a chunk flying off some of the leader cars," Busch said. "Then about five laps ago I saw it start to develop and then it was back to the same old hole again."
He admitted the delays were frustrating, but agreed with Harvick that it was preferable to keep trying to finish the race under green.
"This is a bad predicament to be in for all of us, for NASCAR, everybody," said Busch. "It's unfortunate for the fans, too. It's been a great race all day but this isn't any fun having to wait around and trying to get through this deal. But we will do what we need to do."