Tyler Reddick wins NASCAR Talladega race as leaders wreck coming to checkered flag

TALLADEGA, Ala. — Tyler Reddick picked the right spot, drove through a major wreck coming to the checkered flag, and won NASCAR's GEICO 500 Sunday afternoon on the high banks of Talladega Superspeedway in Talladega, Alabama.

Running fifth off the 2.66-mile superspeedway's final turn, Reddick, of 23XI Racing, kept his No. 45 Camry on the high side as the front group roared toward the stripe.

Meanwhile up front, leader Michael McDowell came down to block second-place racer Brad Keselowski.

McDowell was turned up to the frontstretch wall after contact and Keselowski slowed, allowing Reddick to keep his foot in the gas and zoom on to his first win this season as the field slid and crashed behind him.

"It was chaos. When you come to Talladega that’s what you expect, that’s for sure," Reddick said. "So cool to get my second win here. First in the Cup car. Man, what a day.”

Reddick beat Keselowski by 0.208 seconds for his sixth career win in 156 Cup Series starts and first at Talladega, giving 23XI Racing's co-owner Michael Jordan, who attended the race, a big moment to celebrate.

"Well, as you know, this is NBA playoffs right now, so this to me is like an NBA playoff game," Jordan said. "We’ve been working hard trying to get ourselves to compete with the top guys in the sport. We’ve done a heck of a job just to be where we are. For us to win and to win a big race like this, it means so much to me and for the effort the team has done.

"Everybody tells me when we win, we have a big celebration, but this is the first time I’ve been here," Jordan continued. "To my wife and kids and everybody, yeah, we did it. Sorry I left you home."

MICHAEL JORDAN: Why NBA legend is at NASCAR's Talladega race

For two stages the GEICO was quiet, but the third stage lived up to the track's reputation.

The first two stages went caution-free outside of the stage breaks, but that changed with Christopher Bell hitting the wall. Most of the race was two- or three-wide racing, but most of the cars were trying to save fuel, running laps slower than average. After the Bell crash with 32 to go, four of the other Toyotas – Bubba Wallace, Denny Hamlin, Erik Jones and John Hunter Nemechek collieded, with the first trhee crashing out of the race.

But Reddick avoided the fate of some of his fellow Toyota drivers, giving the manufacturer its first win at the Alabama superspeedway since 2021.

"Just got to give a lot of credit to Ty Gibbs and Martin Truex Jr," Reddick said. "It was just us Toyota’s left, and they pushed me with everything they had so a huge credit to Martin and Ty. Without those pushes we don’t win this race.”

Erik Jones transported to local hospital after crashing out of race

Erik Jones was part of the group of Toyotas that crashed on Lap 157 after making green-flag stops. Jones, Hamlin and Wallace were all taken to infield care center, evaluated and released. NASCAR announced around 8:20 p.m. ET Sunday on social media that Jones returned the Talladega care center and was transported to a local hospital for further evaluation.

Over the in-car radio after the crash, Jones alerted his No. 43 Legacy Motor Club about his back. He was evaluated and released from the infield care center, and spoke with the media afterward.

“I’m sore,” Jones said at the time. “I think just really stretched it out a lot, so it’ll be a long week just trying to be recovered and get feeling better. But I’m all right and it’ll get better.”

It was not clear at what point Jones returned to the care center for additional assistance. He was credited with a 35th-place finish.

Fords make push for first win, come up short

In the leadup to Talladega, a lot was made about how the Fords have been winless to start the 2024 NASCAR Cup Series schedule, and with the weekend being the 60th anniversary of the Mustang, the model the manufacturer's driver use in the cup series, it seemed like a perfect day to get Ford's first win. The manufacturer, led by Penske, swept the stages and had three of the top 10 stage point-leaders. Michael McDowell, Joey Logano and Austin Cindric were some of the lap leaders for the day as well.

Strong day for Hendrick

With three of the Hendrick drivers outside the top-10 at the start of the day, including Kyle Larson starting last and serving a pass through, the cars responded in the opening stage. Larson recovered and took a free pass at the end of the stage, remaining the first car a lap down while the other three drivers earned stage points. Larson would go on and earn stage points in stage two alongside Chase Elliott and William Bryon.

Alex Bowman and Byron had top-10 finishes.

Shane Van Gisbergen makes oval debut

Gisbergen made his cup debut last year, winning the Chicago street race, which led to him leading Super Cars in Australia and joining Trackhouse racing but ran in the Kaulig racing No. 16 car. This season he is running in the Xfinity series and making spot starts in the cup series. In his first-ever on an oval, Gisbergen was leading the race at one point and was running inside the top five at times.

Gisbergen ended the day in 27th place, one lap down.

Contributing: Field Level Media; Kelly Crandall, RACER

Maxwell Donaldson covers high school sports and Jacksonville State athletics for the Gadsden Times. Find him on Twitter/X @_Max_Donaldson and contact him at

This article originally appeared on The Gadsden Times: Tyler Reddick wins NASCAR Talladega race as leaders wreck on final lap