DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (AP) - Martin Truex Jr. is the first driver out of the Daytona 500.
Truex, who earned the outside pole for ''The Great American Race'' but had to start in the back of the field after wrecking in a qualifying race, blew his engine on lap 30.
Truex was considered a strong contender for the season opener after he posted the second-fastest time in pole qualifying last Sunday. He was scheduled to start outside pole-sitter Austin Dillon, but was forced to drop to the rear of the 43-car field after getting caught up in a wreck in a qualifying race Thursday night.
Truex is driving his first season for Furniture Row Racing, a one-car team based in Denver.
The team leases engines from ECR, which produced motors for five of the 12 fastest cars in qualifying.