MOORESVILLE, N.C. (Jan. 22, 2018) – A year after qualifying into the 2017 Daytona 500, Gaunt Brothers Racing and D.J. Kennington are returning to Daytona Beach, Fla. for the 2018 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season opener on Sunday, Feb. 18. Continue reading
Qualifying for Sunday’s GEICO 500 at Talladega Superspeedway was shaping up to be a sentimental story—until Ricky Stenhouse Jr. said “No.”
The last driver to make a run in Saturday’s final round of knockout qualifying, Stenhouse knocked Dale Earnhardt Jr. off the provisional pole for Earnhardt’s last spring race at the 2.66-mile superspeedway. Continue reading
Daytona 500 pole winner Chase Elliott put an exclamation on his qualifying effort with a victory in Thursday night’s first Can-Am Duel at Daytona International Speedway.
Elliott passed second-place starter Brad Keselowski for the lead on lap 37 and held it the rest of the way—through a wreck that altered the positions of the two Open Team drivers trying to race their way into the field for the 59th running of the Great American Race.
In the second Duel, defending Daytona 500 winner Denny Hamlin got a huge push from Austin Dillon and passed Dale Earnhardt Jr. on the next-to-last lap to win the race by 0.214 seconds over Clint Bowyer, who was competing for the first time in the No. 14 Stewart-Haas Racing Ford. Continue reading
Christmas comes but once a year. The same is true of the unique qualifying format for the Daytona 500.
Unlike Christmas, however, the setting and ordering of the field for the Great American Race takes five days, from single-car qualifying on Sunday through the Can-Am Duel at Daytona twin 150-mile races on Thursday.
The basics are straightforward. Only two cars in Sunday’s time trails are locked into their starting positions for the Daytona 500—the pole winner and the car that qualifies on the outside of the front row.
Of the 42 entries for the race, 36 hold Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series charters and are guaranteed to compete on Feb. 26. That leaves six drivers fighting for the four remaining positions in the 500. Those drivers are Elliott Sadler, Timmy Hill, Reed Sorenson, Brendan Gaughan, Corey LaJoie and DJ Kennington.
Qualifying on Sunday sets the starting order for the Can-Am Duel races on Thursday, with the odd-number qualifiers (positions 1-3-5, etc.) running the first Duel, and even numbers competing in the second Duel.
The finishing positions in the Thursday races determine the starting positions for the 500, with the exception of the front row. The winner of the first Duel, which forms the inside row, starts third in the Great American Race, with the winner of the second Duel starting fourth, on the outside of the second row.
If either of the front row starters wins a Duel, then the second-row position goes to second place finisher in that particular Duel.
Open drivers, those competing without charters, have two avenues into the 500. The highest-finishing driver in each of the Can-Am Duels earns a starting position on Feb. 26. The final two positions go to the two fastest among the open drivers in Sunday’s time trials, if not already qualified through the Duels.
Aside from determining who’s fastest in single-car runs, this year’s qualifying session will provide several story lines of keen interest to NASCAR fans.
NASCAR and Pinty’s Reach Six-Year Agreement for
Title Sponsorship of Canadian-Based Series
NASCAR Pinty’s Series Returns To Honda Indy Toronto Weekend In 3-Year Deal
NASCAR in Canada has a new name and entitlement sponsor – one that’s familiar to race fans across the country.
NASCAR and Pinty’s Delicious Foods Inc. announced today a six-year series entitlement sponsorship agreement of NASCAR’s Canadian-based series. Beginning Jan. 1, 2016, the series will be known as the NASCAR Pinty’s Series. Continue reading