John­son wins race, By­ron takes pole

Los Angeles Times - - SPORTS -

Jim­mie John­son trig­gered a wreck that wiped out nearly the en­tire 20-car field at Daytona, Fla., and zipped to the lead to win NASCAR’s rain­short­ened ex­hi­bi­tion Clash.

Hours ear­lier, John­son’s Hen­drick Mo­tor­sports team­mates Wil­liam By­ron and Alex Bow­man locked in the front row for the sea­son-open­ing Daytona 500 in qual­i­fy­ing. By­ron, 21, and Bow­man, 25, com­prise the youngest front row in the race’s his­tory.

John­son won for the first time with new crew chief Kevin Meen­der­ing. John­son and long­time chief Chad Knaus split af­ter last sea­son and seven Cup cham­pi­onships, and Knaus is now with By­ron.

“We still need a points race win to say we’re back in vic­tory lane,” said John­son, who failed to win a race for the first time in his ca­reer last sea­son. “But it was a great first step to­day.”

Rain post­poned fi­nal elim­i­na­tions in the Lu­cas Oil NHRA Win­ter­na­tion­als at Pomona Race­way un­til Mon­day.

Wes­ley Matthews signed with the In­di­ana Pac­ers af­ter be­ing ac­quired and waived by the New York Knicks . ... Kyrie Irv­ing is day to day with a strained right knee, the Bos­ton Celtics an­nounced.

Jose Ramirez re­tained his World Boxing Coun­cil 140pound ti­tle by ma­jor­ity de­ci­sion over Jose Zepeda.

UCLA se­nior Kate­lyn Ohashi got her sec­ond per­fect 10 of the sea­son on her floor rou­tine and Kyla Ross earned the high­est all-around score by a UCLA gym­nast since 2012 as the Bru­ins beat Wash­ing­ton 197.600-196.00 to improve to 8-0. — Blake Richard­son

Four-star wide re­ceiver Puka Nacua, a long­time USC commitment out of Orem, Utah, an­nounced he will sign with Wash­ing­ton. — J. Brady McCol­lough

Ro­ma­nia up­set de­fend­ing cham­pion Czech Re­pub­lic 3-2 to reach the semi­fi­nals of the Fed Cup with France, Be­larus and Aus­tralia, which edged the U.S. 3-2 af­ter Ash­leigh Barty and Priscilla Hon beat Danielle Collins and Ni­cole Melichar 6-4, 7-5 in dou­bles .. ... Jo-Wil­fried Tsonga beat Pierre-Hugues Her­bert 6-4, 6-2 in an all-French fi­nal of the Open Sud de France.

Amer­i­can Chris Corn­ing and Zoi Sad­owski-Syn­nott of New Zealand were crowned the snow­board slopestyle win­ners af­ter the fi­nals were can­celed be­cause of wind on the last day of the world cham­pi­onships.

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