Ryan Newman wins the Daytona 500

Feb. 17, 2008 at 7:40 PM

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla., Feb. 17 (UPI) -- Unheralded Ryan Newman was the surprise winner Sunday at NASCAR's Daytona 500 at the Daytona Beach (Fla.) International Speedway.

Newman became the 32nd winner of the "Great American" race in its 50th running. The South Bend, Ind., native won the "500" for the first time in his career with his 13th victory on the circuit.

He passed Tony Stewart on the final lap after a nudge from teammate Kurt Busch, who finished fourth behind Stewart after starting 43rd.

It was the ninth time the race was decided on the final lap.

"It was all about Kurt Busch, I couldn't have won it without him," Newman admitted. "It was just being at the right place at the right time."

Reed Sorenson was fifth.

Elliott Sadler, Kasey Kahne, Robby Gordon, Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Greg Biffle rounded out the top 10 finishers.

The season-opening Sprint Cup race had 16 different leaders and 42 lead changes.

Two-time Sprint Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson was 27th.

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