Daytona 500: How Fast Was Ryan Newman Probably Going Before His Crash?

Ryan Newman was involved in a horrible crash at the Daytona 500 on Monday night. He's still in the hospital in serious condition, but the injuries he suffered are non-life-threatening. The crash occurred on the final lap when Ryan Blaney nudged Newman's No. 6 car and that led to him spinning out, hitting the wall and then flipping before skidding on the track. That leads to the question is how fast was Newman going before the crash?

In any NASCAR race, drivers can get cars up to 200 mph. Because of that, it's safe to say that Newman was in that range before the crash. And while there have been a few to blame Blaney for nudging Newman at the end of the race, the reality of it is drivers are that close to each other consistently. And they do this because it makes them go faster.

"It's hard to explain to you guys that aren't in cars, but when there's someone directly behind you and they pull their car out of line really fast, it's like you pull a parachute in your car," NASCAR driver Jamie McMurray described in a 2010 interview with Motorsport.com. "It literally feels like you lose three or five miles an hour immediately, and when that happens, the car that's doing the passing just has the momentum."

This is called drafting, but it can't be done all the time.

"Cars can't draft for the entire race: The trailing cars' engines overheat more quickly in this configuration because of the diminished airflow," Brian Resnick of Vox.com wrote in 2017. "So drafting and deciding when to pass involves a lot of strategy."

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What happened with Newman was an unfortunate incident and it was something that doesn't happen in NASCAR very often. And even though he was able to survive the crash, it's unknown how serious his injuries are.

"We're grateful for the news about Ryan," Mark Rushbrook, the global director of Ford Performance Motorsports said in a statement. "We had been waiting for information just like everyone else, so to hear some positive news tonight is a relief. Ryan has been an important part of the Roush Fenway and Ford NASCAR program this past year, and he is so respected for being a great competitor by everyone in the sport."