DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Triumph rider Danny Eslick dominated Saturday’s 73rd Daytona 200 AMA Pro GoPro Daytona SportBike race at Daytona Int’l Speedway, winning from the pole and leading 44 of the 57 laps.
Eslick, riding the No. 69 Triumph Daytona 675, became the first rider to win the Daytona 200 aboard a Triumph since the late Gary Nixon in 1967. The Broken Arrow, Okla., rider won by a margin of 10.975 seconds.
“It’s awesome,” Eslick said. “I’ve gotten the pole before. My very first 200 I got fourth. There’s been a lot of hard work and a lot of years have passed by to get this victory. It means a lot.”
While Eslick had some fierce racing with riders Jason DiSalvo and Dane Westby during the race, pit stops from his Riders Discount Racing Triumph team proved to be the difference.
“Pit stops for the Daytona 200 are the most important thing,” Eslick said. “You can’t have bad stops and we had great pit stops.”
After taking the checkered flag, Eslick put on an enthusiastic celebration that included a victory lap with the checkered flag.
“This one was pretty nerve-wracking,” Eslick said. “This is one of the biggest races in the world. Obviously the biggest one I’ve ever won. Laguna Seca was pretty special a couple of years ago. But anything involved with Daytona is pretty incredible. This trophy is going to sit up loud and proud right in the middle of my house.”
Rounding out the podium were Yamaha riders Jake Gagne and Jake Lewis.