William Byron Gets ‘Redemption’ at Darlington Raceway

Getty Rick Hendrick (left) celebrates a win with William Byron (right).

William Byron conquered Darlington Raceway on Sunday, May 14, to reach seven career wins with Hendrick Motorsports. This win was important in terms of the championship standings, but it also served as “a little bit of redemption” for the young driver.

Hendrick Motorsports Vice Chairman Jeff Gordon was the man who made this comment after the wild Cup Series race. What he referred to was the 2022 Goodyear 400 in which Byron led 24 laps and put himself in a position to win late. However, he finished 13th after Joey Logano punted him into the outside wall.

“Well, obviously, a great day for the 24 car,” Gordon said. “I think back to last year here at Darlington — a little bit of redemption for William Byron and that team. Really special.”

“…Really, really happy for that whole team,” Gordon added. “This year, I feel like it’s been a phenomenal year for Rudy [Fugle] and William and that whole 24 team. They’ve just been performing at a very high level every weekend, and that’s why they’ve won the races that they have.”

Byron Set a New Career-Best Mark at Darlington Raceway

GettyWilliam Byron celebrates a win at Darlington Raceway.

Byron moved up to the NASCAR Cup Series in 2018 after winning the Xfinity Series championship. He took over the No. 24 Chevrolet while Chase Elliott moved to the No. 9 Chevrolet, and he began the pursuit of his first career win.

Byron was not able to achieve this goal until the 2020 season when he won the Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona International Speedway to secure a spot in the playoffs. He has since gone on to win seven total races at the top level of NASCAR.

The Goodyear 400 at Darlington Raceway served as a major moment in Byron’s career. He snapped a Hendrick Motorsports winless streak dating back to the 2012 season, and he set a new career-best mark.

For the first time in Byron’s career, he won for the third time in a single season. His previous best record was two wins in a single season, which he set in 2022. However, he surpassed it while showcasing a tribute scheme to Jeff Gordon.

“Yeah, it’s pretty amazing,” Byron said after climbing from the No. 24. “My granddad passed away on Thursday, and just, man, I wish my family could be here. Just things have a way of working out, honestly. It just worked out that way today.

“We didn’t have the best third stage. We just kept battling, and things just kind of come back around. Definitely didn’t expect this. But just thankful for a great team, and, yeah, just things have a way of working out, and to come back here to Darlington and have it go exactly the other way.”

The No. 24 Team Celebrated a Historic Mark

GettyWilliam Byron does a burnout at Darlington Raceway.

The win at Darlington was the seventh of Byron’s Cup Series career. It moved him into a tie with teammate Alex Bowman and Team Penske’s Ryan Blaney for 68th all-time. Now, these three drivers are all one win behind Kyle Petty.

This win was far more important for the legacy of the No. 24 Chevrolet. It was the 100th for the iconic entry. Gordon provided the first 93 while Byron added seven. Though the expectation is that he will add more in the future.

There are multiple numbers ahead of the No. 24, but the list is small. The No. 2 and the No. 3 each have 101 trips to Victory Lane courtesy of a wide variety of drivers. The No. 43 has 200 wins split between Lee Petty, Richard Petty, Jim Paschal, Bobby Hamilton, John Andretti, Aric Almirola, and Erik Jones.

The No. 11 has the most wins in NASCAR Cup Series history. The entry entered the 2023 season with 228 trips to Victory Lane split between Parnelli Jones, Junior Johnson, Ned Jarrett, Mario Andretti, Bobby Allison, Buddy Baker, AJ Foyt, Cale Yarborough, Darrell Waltrip, Terry Labonte, Geoffrey Bodine, Bill Elliott, and Denny Hamlin. However, Hamlin added one more by winning at Kansas Speedway.

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