Through some close racing and a big crash, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. powered through and won his first Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race. It was a popular victory as it got legendary owner Jack Roush back in victory lane and Stenhouse celebrated with his fellow competitor and girlfriend Danica Patrick.
One person who was temporarily missing was Stenhouse’s father, who was watching the race from an RV in the backstretch. There was a reason Stenhouse wasn’t there, Talladega security mistook him for a drunk NASCAR fan as he tried to climb a fence to shorten the trip and get to his son.
I have been to Talladega and have seen a race from the backstretch and it is a hike to go around and get from there to the infield to get to victory lane. It’s a 2.66 mile track and you would probably miss out on all the celebration if you had to walk around from there. So the shortest trip is obviously climbing the fence, crossing the track (which is empty), cut through the infield and get to victory lane.
Security expected a drunk fan and not the father of the winner so when they asked who he was and he said Ricky Stenhouse Sr., security initially didn’t believe him. Even after showing them his credentials, they were hesitant. After calling it over the radio and Stenhouse Jr. having to prove it was him, his father was taken to victory lane to celebrate instead of the track jail.
— SiriusXM NASCAR (@SiriusXMNASCAR) May 7, 2017
The win was Stenhouse’s first in 158 starts. Stenhouse Jr. snuck through a 16 car crash with 20 laps to go that happened in front of his father in the backstretch. Stenhouse made his move at the start of the final lap, getting by Kyle Busch and had to fight off attempts by Jimmie Johnson and Jamie McMurray to get his win.