Originally written on Tireball.com  |  Last updated 10/15/14

FONTANA, CA - OCTOBER 09: Michael Waltrip, driver of the #55 NAPA Auto Parts Toyota, stands on pit road during qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Pepsi 500 at Auto Club Speedway on October 9, 2009 in Fontana, California. (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
Michael Waltrip wrecked while trying to merge from the pits back onto the track during a green flag pit stop and will miss the Daytona 500 for the first time since 1987. Waltrip lacked owner points to guarantee himself a spot in the race and was driving for Hillman Racing in the #40 car. Needing fuel to finish the race the 48 year old made a green flag stop but no one came down pit road with him. Moments later he was out of the first Gatorade Duel and missing out on $240,000 just for making the 54th running of the Daytona 500. Three of Waltrip’s four career wins came at Daytona including wins in the Daytona 500 in 2001 and 2003.
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