THE RACE: Daytona 500 and Speedweeks

Nextel Cup Race #1 of 36 for the 2004 Nextel Cup season
Updated: often, leading up to the race

See below for the entire Speedweeks TV Schedule


  • What: A 70-lap two segment race for eligible drivers who won Bud Poles Awards during the 2003 Cup season
    or former Budweiser Shootout [Busch Clash] winners not already in.

  • Race: Saturday, February 7, 2004 in Daytona, FL

  • Draw for Starting Spot: Friday, February 6th, 2004, 8:30pm/et

  • TV: TNT 8:00pm/et

  • Pre Race show: TNT 7:30pm/et

  • ReAir: Monday Feb 9th at 10:00pm/et on Speed Channel

  • Purse: $1,066,000 with $210,000 to the winner

  • Entry List: 2004 Budwesier Shootout Page

  • 2003 Budweiser Shootout Race Winner: Dale Earnhardt Jr.

  • Track/Race Length: 2.5 mile oval, 70 laps, 175 miles

  • Practice: Friday, Feb 6th, 3:45 - 5:00pm/et and 6:30 - 7:30pm/et; TV: both on SPEED Channel

  • Info, Past Winners and more on my 2004 Budweiser Shootout Page

  • Shootout Format [2003]: The 70-lap all-star event – which features pole winners from the 2003 season and past winners of the event – will be split into two segments. The first segment will consist of 20 laps after which a 10-minute intermission will be held. Teams may make pit stops and do other work that transpires during a normal pit stop during this time. The second segment will be 50 laps and must end in a green-white-checkered finish. Caution laps will count toward the total in both segments so the second segment may extend beyond the scheduled 70-lap total. In the event of a red flag, crews will be permitted to work on the cars; however, all work must be performed on pit road or in the garage. When the race is resumed, all cars must immediately be ready to return to competition. All re-starts will be double-file re-starts. All lapped cars will re-start at the rear of the field. The Shootout format was changed from a 20-lap race to two 10-lap segments in 1991. The move to a 25-lap event in 1998 marked the third format change of this prestigious event. The format was again changed in 2001, this time to a 70-lap event.()(2-4-2003)


  • Races: Thursday, February 12, 2004 in Daytona, FL

  • Start Time: Race 1) 1:00pm/et with Race 2 starting after the 1st

  • TV: TNT - live, pre-race at 12:00pm/et

  • Race Re-Air: no dates/times found

  • 2003 Race Winners: 1) #31-Robby Gordon; 2) #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr.

  • Track/Race Length: 2.5 mile oval, 50 laps each, 125 miles each

    (see below for Daytona 500 qualifying rules and how the 125's come into play)


  • Race: Sunday, February 15, 2004 in Daytona, FL

  • TV: NBC - 1:30pm/et

  • Announcers: Allen Bestwick, Benny Parsons, Wally Dallenbach

  • Pit Reporters: Bill Weber, Matt Yocum, Marty Snider, Dave Burns

  • War Wagon: Bill Weber and many guests

  • NASCAR on TV

  • Pre-Race Show: NBC - ??:??pm/et - hosted by Bill Weber

  • Scheduled Race Re-Air:
    Tuesday, Feb 17th on TNT at 2:00am/et
    2/18 Daytona 500 - Fast Forward version Speed Channel 4:00pm/et
    2/19 Daytona 500 - Speed Channel 3:00pm/et
    2/20 Daytona 500 - Fast Forward version Speed Channel 1:00am/et

  • Pay Per View/NASCAR In Demand:

  • Purse/Race Awards (2004 - minimum): $15,972,313; Winners minimum: $1,391,730; 2nd; $986,325; 3rd: $693,550; 4th: $541,750; 5th: $413,950; and 43rd: $177,058

  • Purse/Race Awards (2003): $14,030,129; Winner got: $1,419,406; 2nd: $1,027,101; 3rd: $707,526; 4th: $569,630; 5th: $444,609...and 43rd got: $195,663

  • Purse/Race Awards (2002): $12,314,505; Winner got: $1,327,030; 2nd: $928,100; 3rd: $631,500; 4th: $479,075; 5th: $353,175; 43rd: $114,236

  • Purse/Race Awards (2001): $11,049,049; Winner got: $1,303,826; 2nd: $905,700; 3rd: $608,050; 4th: $452,600; 5th: $334,650

  • Entry List Links: at:

  • 2003 Race Winner: Michael Waltrip, 133.870mph, started 4th [rained shortened to 109 laps]

  • Race Record: Buddy Baker, Feb 1980, 177.602mph

  • Track/Race Length: 2.5 mile oval, 200 laps, 500 miles

  • Pit Road Speed: 55mph

    Practice Dates/Times/TV

    Friday, Feb 6th (for Bud Shootout), 3:45 - 5:00pm/et and 6:30 - 7:30pm/et; TV: both on SPEED Channel
    (re-air at 9:00pm/et and 10:30pm/et)

    Saturday, Feb 7th, 10:10 - 12:25am/et, no TV; 1340 - 3:30pm/et, TV: both on SPEED Channel

    Monday, Feb 9th, none

    Tuesday, Feb 10th, 12:10 - 12:55pm/et and 2:10 - 2:55pm/et; TV: both on SPEED Channel

    Wednesday, Feb 11th, 1:40 - 2:25pm/et; TV: SPEED Channel

    Thursday, Feb 12th, none, the Twin 125's will be run

    Friday, Feb 13th, 1:10 - 1:55pm/et; and 2:50 - 3:35pm/et; TV: SPEED Channel, after BGN practice

    Saturday, Feb 14th, 9:00 - 9:45am/et; TV: SPEED Channel

  • Happy Hour Practice: Saturday, Feb 14th, 10:40am - 11:25am/et; TV: Speed Channel

    Qualifying Info

  • Qualifying Draw: Saturday, Feb 7th, 9:10am/et

  • Qualfying Order: - Daytona 500 qualifying order or Daytona 500 qualifying order -

  • Qualifying: 2 laps for positions 1-2 and the Gatorade Twin 125's lineup, Sunday, Feb 8th at 12:00pm/et, TV-NBC (check local listings) and live via MRN radio/internet(link below)

  • NASCAR Online will have live lap-by-lap coverage of Winston Cup qualifying via the web (NOTE: this is a paid subscription service).

  • Second-Round Qualifying: none listed

  • The traditional third round of qualifying was discontinued after the 1999 race

  • Event/Track Qualifying Record: Bill Elliott, 210.364mph, February 1987

  • Event Qualifying Record with Restrictor Plate: Ken Schrader, 196.996, February 1989

  • Last Year's Pole Sitter: #30-Jeff Green [now in the #43], 186.606, finished 39th

  • Track Specs:
  • Daytona International Speedway is a tri-oval with 31-degree banking in the turns
    18-degree banking in the tri-oval and 6-degree banking on the straightaways
    Date track opened: 1959
    Banking in turns 1-4: 31 degrees
    Banking in tri-oval: 18 degrees
    Banking on backstretch: 3 degrees
    Banking on the straightaway: 6 degrees
    Length of frontstretch: 3,800 feet
    Length of backstretch: 3,400 feet
    Grandstand Seating: 168,000.

  • Track Homepage: Daytona International Speedway site

  • Last Year: see my 2003 Daytona 500 Race Info Page.

  • For the history of the restrictor plate and rules, see my Restrictor Plate Chart



    Step 1) Positions 1-2: set by first round qualifying, the fastest two drivers.

    Step 2) Positions 3-30: set by the results of the Twin 125's, 28 drivers, not already in by step 1.

    Step 3) Positions 31-38: the fastest eight drivers from qualifying 1 qand 2 not in already from steps 1 and 2.

    Step 4) Positions 39-42: the highest drivers in the previous season's OWNERS points standing not already in the race.

    Step 5) Postion 43: to a former Winston Cup Champion not already in by the criteria set in steps 1 thru 4. If there is no former champ not in, the next driver whose team in the highest in the previous OWNERS points standings

  • The Daytona 500 has a different qualifying format. Only the two fastest drivers secure starting spots for the 500 in that first round. Drivers can stand on Saturday's speed or try to go faster in second-round qualifying (do not see 2nd round listed in 2004 DIS Schedule). Once a driver elects to go again, his previous speed is wiped off the slate and the new speed becomes his official mark. After qualifying ends on Monday, the speeds will be used to set the lineups for Thursday's Gatorade 125-mile qualifying races. Odd numbers -- first, third, fifth and so on -- go in the first race, even numbers in the second. Results from the 125s will set positions 3 through 30 for the 500. The next eight spots in the 500 field will go to the drivers with the eight best qualifying speeds who have not yet made the field. The final five spots go to provisional starters based on last season's car owner points standings. The second-fastest driver is assured of starting on the outside of the front row for the 500. The third-fastest, however, could start the main event as far back as 31st depending on how he does in the 125-miler.

    Another Explanation: The Twin 125-Mile Qualifying Races will determine positions 3 through 30. The drivers who posted the odd-number rankings in the qualifying rounds compete in the first race, which will set the inside rows -- positions 3, 5, 7, etc. -- for the Daytona 500. The even-number rankings from the timed qualifying compete in the second 125-mile race and set the outside rows -- positions 4, 6, 8, etc. In the event of cancellation, the top 30 positions will be set from the timed qualifying sessions. Starting positions 31 through 38 are determined by qualifying speeds set in qualifying. The 30 cars in the field are removed from the equation, and the remaining cars with the fastest official qualifying speeds fill the six positions. Starting positions 39 through 42 are provisionals assigned beginning with the car owner ranked highest in the previous Winston Cup championship points standings who did not qualify for positions 1 through 38. Starting position 43 is assigned to any car owner who has a past NASCAR Winston Cup champion driver who participated in the Winston Cup Series last season and did not otherwise qualify. The most recent past champion driver not assigned a position will receive this starting spot. If the 43rd position remains unused, it will be assigned to the next eligible owner based on last seasons final owner points standings.(That's Racin')


    Goodyear Eagle Superspeedway Radials (Nextel Cup, Busch Series and IROC)
    Goodyear Wrangler Superspeedway Radials (Truck Series)

    Number of Tires Required:
    Nextel Cup: Left - 1,900, Right - 1,950;
    Busch Series: Left - 550, Right - 550; Truck Series: Left - 400,
    Right - 400; IROC: Left - 130, Right - 130

    Tire Codes: Left - D-6800; Right - D-6802

    Tire Circumference: Left - 87.9 in.; Right - 88.4 in.

    Technical Inspection Inflation:
    Left Front - 30 psi; Left Rear - 30 psi;
    Right Front - 55 psi; Right Rear - 50 psi

    Minimum Recommended Inflation:
    Left Front - 27 psi; Left Rear - 27 psi;
    Right Front - 50 psi; Right Rear - 45 psi

    Estimated Pit Window: Every 32-36 laps, based on fuel mileage.

    Notes:  This is the first race weekend this combination of tires will be run. . .the previous combination of Goodyear Eagles recommended for Daytona had a run of nine straight Nextel Cup weekends, dating back to July 1999. . .Daytona is the only track this combination will be run on in 2004. . .the Nextel Cup, Busch, Truck and IROC series will all run the same tires this week. . .the only difference is that the branding on sidewall of the truck series tires will read Goodyear Wrangler brand, while the three other series will run Goodyear Eagles. . .as on all NASCAR ovals longer than one mile, teams are required to run inner liners in all four tires at Daytona. . .air pressure in the inner liners must be 12-25 psi greater than that of the outer tire.

    Goodyear Quote -- Mark Keto, Lead Engineer, Stock Car Tire Development: "For Daytona, we have a new, softer, more compliant construction on both sides of the car. We will also introduce a more wear resistant right-side tread compound, which at the same time has a little more grip. This tire set-up tested very well this off-season, so we expect a highly successful Speedweeks."


  • The NASCAR Winston Cup Leader Bonus is $0 at Daytona International [not awarded the first race, will be $20,000 at Rockingham] for leading the points and winning the race (Sterling Marlin last won the award, $20,000 at Darlington on March 17, 2002 - it was not won in 2003). The $360,000 annual award is paid at $10,000 per race to the point leader at the end of each event if the driver is also the winner. The award increases by $10,000 each week the it goes unclaimed. If the point leader is not the race winner at the end of the year, the balance of the award is distributed among the top-10 finishers in the drivers point standings(11-9-2003)

  • 68 Races since... Leader bonus has been won. It's been 68 races since the NASCAR Winston Cup points leader won a race and took home the NASCAR Winston Cup Leader Bonus. #17-Matt Kenseth led the series points in 2003. #18-Bobby Labonte collected the biggest paycheck, $190,000, with a win at Indianapolis in 2000. The $10,000 bonus is available following every NASCAR Winston Cup Series race. If the point leader does not win the race, the bonus rolls over to the next week. Sterling Marlin last won the award, $20,000 at Darlington on March 17, 2002, it was NOT won by #15-Waltrip at Daytona, it rolled over to Rockingham.(11-9-2003)



none listed

news and links

  • RUMBLINGS -- DAYTONA: They all knew who they had to just wasn't gonna get done today! Dale Earnhardt Jr. took the lead for good on lap 181 and led the rest of the way to grab his first ever Daytona 500 victory. Six years to the day from his dad's only victory in the 500, the Earnhardt's become the third father-son team to capture the Great American Race, joining the Pettys (Lee and Richard) and the Allisons (Bobby & Davey). It took Dad 20 tries...the son but 5. Pretty select company....
    It was Jr.'s 10th career win (six of 'em plate events), moving him into a tie for 45th on the all-time win list with Sterling Marlin & Donnie Allsion.
    DEI has now won 7 of the last 8 plate races (the rest of the field still has a little catching up to do), and Little E becomes the 29th different driver to win the Daytona 500. His bounty from the over $16M in posted awards was a cool $1,495,070. It wouldn't be a plate race without a "big one"....and we had it today on lap 72. This time it was a 12-car job, with Michael Waltrip getting the worst of it. All drivers were okay. As scary as that big wreck was, how's about Johnny Sauter screaming down pit road? What's up with that![Jayski Note: Sauter was penalized]
    Not too shabby finishing runner-up here....Tony Stewart's take-home pay this week is over $1M.
    #22-Scott Wimmer (3rd) had his career-best finish today. His previous best was 9th at Phoenix last November.
    #01-Joe Nemechek (6th) had his best finish since he was 3rd at Loudon last September.
    #38-Elliott Sadler (7th) had his best finish since he was 4th at Martinsville last April.
    #88-Dale Jarrett (10th) had his best finish since he was 7th at Bristol last August.
    #1-John Andretti (13th) had his best finish since he was 12th at Loudon last September.
    #41-Casey Mears (14th) had his career-best finish today. His previous best was 15th at Las Vegas last March.
    #23-Dave Blaney (15th) had his best finish since he was 14th at Loudon last September.
    #45-Kyle Petty (21st) had his best finish since he was 16th at Michigan last August.
    #50-Derrike Cope (30th) had his best finish since he was 29th at Las Vegas last March.
    STREAKIN....Jimmie Johnson has 8 Top-10's in a row. Tony Stewart has 9 Top-10's in the last 10 races. Jeff Gordon has 9 Top-10's in the last 10 races.
    The Rookie Report: Scott Wimmer (3rd) is the top finishing freshman today in a slam dunk. He was followed by Brendan Gaughan (19th), Johnny Sauter (26th), Scott Riggs (34th), Brian Vickers (39th), and Kasey Kahne (41st).
    This Week's Elevator....UP: Operator of the Week is Jeff Gordon (+31), followed by Scott Wimmer (+23), Dale Jarrett (+21), and Mike Skinner (+21). DOWN: The Big Dropper was Mark Martin (-35), followed by Sterling Marlin (-33), Jeff Burton (-31), Jamie McMurray (-29), and Michael Waltrip (-29). This is Gordon's first Op since Homestead in November of 2002.( (Nextel Cup) Newsletter)(2-17-2004)

  • Dale Earnhardt Jr. wins the Daytona 500! #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr. won the Daytona 500, just beating #20-Tony Stewart, winning the race without the help of a teammate [#15-Waltrip was wrecked earlier in the race]. Rounding out the top five were: #22-Wimmer [highest finishing rookie], #29-Harvick and #48-Johnson. Johnson's 5th place finish, extends his streak for being in the top 10 in drivers points to 70 straight races. Wonder if Earnhardt Jr. will run the Busch race on Monday, in which he is leading. Earnhardt Jr is the third father-son combo to win the Daytona 500 [his late father Dale Dr. did in 1998], the others were Bobby-Davey Allison and Lee-Richard Petty.(2-15-2004)

  • The Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway is OVER:
    The UNOFFICIAL Top Ten (start pos in parens), lap leaders, cars out, cautions and some notes
    after 200 of 200 laps [now an official race]:

    pos,car#,driver,starting spot
    #8-Earnhardt Jr. (3)(59 laps led)
    #20-Stewart (5)(97 laps led)
    #22-Wimmer (26)(5 laps led) - only took 2 tires
    #29-Harvick (10)(6 laps led)
    #48-Johnson (6)(16 laps led)
    #01-Nemechek (14)
    #38-Sadler (2)
    #24-Gordon (39)(8 laps led)
    #17-Kenseth (12)(2 laps led)
    #88-Jarrett (31)
    Pole Sitter: #16-Biffle was 12th

    did ya know? the halfway leader in the last 11 Daytona 500's failed to win the race
    the halfway leader today was #20-Stewart.(NBC Sports)
    make it 12.

    Cars on the lead lap: 15 (of 43 starters)

  • Off track/out of race (10):
    #6-Martin (engine-out);
    #99-Burton (engine-out);
    #9-Kahne (engine-out);
    #49-Schrader (accident-out);
    #15-Waltrip (accident-out);
    #25-Vickers (accident-out);
    #42-McMurray (accident-out)
    #31-Gordon (accident-out);
    #10-Riggs (accident-out);
    #40-Marlin (accident-out);

    Laps Leaders Unofficial (10 with 26 lead changes): #8-Earnhardt Jr.(59 laps led); #29-Harvick (6); #20-Stewart (97, led most and halfway); #48-Johnson (16); #45-Petty (5); #24-Gordon (8); #17-Kenseth (2); #1-Andretti (1); #5-Labonte (1); #22-Wimmer (5);

    Cautions: 4 for 23 laps

    Caution 4 - Laps 72 - 80: The big one, #30-Sauter got loose, lost it and moved up into #25-Vickers. who moved up into #15-Waltrip, Waltrip came down the track and was hit by #31-Gordon, Waltrip got caught up in the grass/dirt and flipped 3 times, other cars included #5, #4, #40, #10, #42, #12, #09, #1. Waltrip is still on it's roof and Waltrip is still in the car. Waltrip is talking on his radio and fiannly got out and walked away, waving to the crowd.
    Caution 3 - Laps 60 - 64: #42-McMurray came up on #2-Wallace, causing Wallace to move up into #43-Green and #49-Schrader had no place to go and got into the #43. #19-Mayfield went thru the grass to avoid the wreck.
    Caution 2 - Laps 34 - 38: #50-Cope lost left rear tire and spun around and backed into the turn 4 wall. #10-Riggs clipped Cope, but no serious damage reported. the team is fixing the car.
    Caution 1 - Laps 8 - 11: #6-Martin lost an engine. #17-Kenseth and #77-Gaughan made some contact avoiding Martin. no major damage.

    Who got a lap back on each caution at Daytona - The Lucky Dog Pack?: (and their finish)
    Caution 4: #41-Mears, 14th
    Caution 3: #18-Labonte, 11th
    Caution 2: #40-Marlin, 37th
    Caution 1: none a lap down

    RACE NOTES: (as noted on TV or MRN Radio)
    ---- on lap 170 pitstops, #22-Wimmer only took 2 tires, supposedly the only leader to do so
    ---- #16-Biffle was caught speed coming into pitroad on lap 169, and was penalized a stop-and-go.
    ---- green flag stops [could be the last ones] occurred in the lap 168-171 range.
    ---- in the lap 137-104 range, green flag pitstops occurred.
    ---- #42-McMurray and #12-Newman are back on the track as of lap 199.
    ---- on lap 106, some teams are making green flag pit stops.
    ---- #2-Wallace is back on the track as of lap 100 after getting repairs.
    ---- #50-Cope is back on the track after the team made repairs after his wreck on lap 34.
    ---- as of lap 63, #14-Foyt is back on the track after spending 21 laps in the garage, no idea why.
    ---- on lap 45, #97-Busch started smoking after getting into the left rear of #8-Earnhardt Jr. and had to pit to get the right front where there was a tire rub.
    ---- on lap 43, #9-Kahne lost power and came into pit. #14-Foyt is off the track.
    ---- during the 2nd caution pit stops, #42-McMurray was in the pits with the crew under the hood as the engine is overheating and was sent back on the track.
    ---- Many of he leaders came for green flag stops on lap 30. #18-Labonte came in a little hot and ended up in the grass, but recovered and got pitted, the team is making repairs on the front valance via pit stops.
    ---- Roush/Yates engine problems? #99-Burton is in the pits with the hood up as of lap 28.
    ---- to the back, six drivers had to fall to the rear of the field before the drop of the green flag at Daytona: #16-Biffle [was to start 1st], #12-Newman [20th], #32-Craven [28th], #10-Riggs [36th] #50-Cope [42nd]

  • Where did the top 10 starters finish at Daytona?
    #16-Biffle, finished 12th
    #38-Sadler (2), finished 7th
    #8-Earnhardt Jr. (3), WON
    #40-Marlin (4), finished 37th-DNQ
    #20-Stewart (5), finished 2nd
    #48-Johnson (6), finished 5th
    #42-McMurray (7), finished 36th-DNQ
    #6-Martin (8), finished 43rd-DNQ
    #15-Waltrip (9), finished 38th-DNQ
    #29-Harvick (10), finished 14th
  • Where did the drivers who changed engines/went to back up cars finish at Daytona?
    #16-Biffle [was to start 1st], finished 12th
    #12-Newman [20th], finished 31st
    #32-Craven [28th], finished 23rd
    #10-Riggs [36th - backup car], finished 34th-DNQ
    #50-Cope [42nd], finished 30th

  • Daytona 500 Results Links at:

    Daytona Intl Speedway Site
    Yahoo Sports

  • Daytona 500 Starting Lineup at:
    Jayski's Daytona 500 Lineup / Qualifying Page
    Fox Sports - Updated with the drivers going to the rear - lineup and commentary

    Daytona Intl Speedway site

  • To the back Riggs UPDATE add Biffle, Newman, Craven, Cope UPDATE add Stewart?: #10-Scott Riggs will go to a backup car for the Daytona 500 after wrecking in the Gatorade Twin 125's, so he will fall to the rar of the field before the drop of the green flag on Sunday.(2-13-2004)
    UPDATE: #16-Greg Biffle, whose Ford qualified on the pole for Sunday's running of the Daytona 500, will start the race from the rear of the field after his team made an engine change Saturday afternoon. Crew chief Doug Randolph and his crew were working as a steady rain fell outside the team's garage stall at Daytona International Speedway. Randolph said the decision was made after excessive leakage was seen in a cylinder during routine checks after the practice.
    The engine change means that all of the cars on the inside row will move up to take the green flag in the Daytona 500, with Dale Earnhardt Jr. at the head of that line. Earnhardt Jr. earned the No. 3 starting spot with a victory in Thursday's first 125-mile qualifying race.
    #12-Ryan Newman will also be going to the back of the field for today's green flag after his team changed engines following a spin in the practice session. Newman will give up the 20th starting spot to go to the back of the field.
    #32-Ricky Craven [was to start 28th] and #50-Derrike Cope [was to start 42nd] also changed engines and will drop to the rear of the field, as will #10-Scott Riggs, who will be using a backup car following a crash in his 125-miler on Thursday. The cars will assume new positions at the rear of the field in the order they qualified, beginning with Biffle.()(2-14-2004)
    UPDATE 2: on Fox Sport Net's NASCAR This Morning, it was reported that #20-Tony Stewart [scheduled to start 5th] will also have to fall to the rear of the field before the start of the Daytona 500, didn't catch if they had to go to a backup or change an engine, last I heard the car only had sheet metal damage, unless they found more damage later.
    HOWEVER have seen nothing official and all interviews with #20 crew chief Greg Zipadelli indicates nothing about Stewart going to the rear of the field.(2-15-2004)

  • 33rd is it: The furthest back in the field a Daytona 500 winner has started was 33rd, by Bobby Allison in 1978.(2-15-2004)

  • Happy Hour Practice at Daytona for the Daytona 500 is over. The top 5 speeds were:
    #23-Blaney 191.975
    #22-Wimmer 191.746
    #19-Mayfield 191.742
    #48-Johnson 191.563
    #21-Rudd 191.550
    (speeds run very early in the session)
    Slowest is #50-Cope at 186.297. #4-Lepage did not practice.
    20 minutes into the session, #20-Stewart smacked the was hard avoiding #1-Andretti, pancaking the right side of the car. NASCAR came into the garage to talked to Andretti, the #20 team closed the door of their garage before any media could talk to Stewart or and of the team. Finally the door was opened a few minutes later.
    Just into practice, #12-Ryan Newman got sideways off turn 4, doing a 360, had a left front tire down, needed some repair to the front valance. #2-Wallace got into the rear of the #99-Burton car during the incident.
    For speeds, see or - Happy Hour Speeds.(2-14-2004)

  • Saturday's first practice at Daytona for the Daytona 500 was cancelled due to fog.(2-14-2004)

  • Newman wins IROC race at Daytona: see my 2004 IROC Page for the race results, race rundown and points standings.(2-13-2004)

  • #2 for Gordon: #24-Jeff Gordon used a provisional to make the field for the Daytona 500, did ya know, it is only his 2nd provisional used....ever, in the Cup series? the first one was at Homestead in there ya go, you don't have to look it up....cause I already did.(2-14-2004)

  • the 2nd Friday practice at Daytona is over at Daytona. The top five were:
    #4-Lepage 191.881
    #42-McMurray 191.869
    #8-Earnhardt Jr. 191.648
    #24-Gordon 191.522
    #19-Mayfield 191.498
    slowest was #01-Nemechek at 186.912.
    not practicing were: #29, #38, #09, #50, #40, #45, #15, #33.
    See speeds at or

  • the 1st Friday practice at Daytona is over at Daytona. The top five were:
    #8-Earnhardt Jr. 192.012
    #97-Busch 191.980
    #20-Stewart 191.571
    #42-McMurray 191.445
    #01-Nemechek 190.718
    slowest was #30-Sauter at 183.065.
    not practicing were: #23, #24, #29, #48.
    See speeds at or

  • Stock Car Fans Ramblings - Twin 125's: We had the running of the Gatorade Twin 125's at Daytona International Speedway, and if Jr's car was awful Thursday it's gonna be a long day for 42 other drivers on Sunday.
    Greg Biffle grabbed his first career-pole Sunday, and he'll lead 'em to the green as the first-ever Roush pole winner at Daytona. It was also the first pole for a Roush Ford since Kurt Busch grabbed the top-spot at Homestead in November of 2002.
    For Biffle, this is his best starting spot since he had the outside pole at Richmond last September. He was also outside the front-row at Watkins Glen last August.
    Elliott Sadler (2nd) has his best starting spot since he had the pole at Talladega last October.
    Sterling Marlin (4th) has his best starting spot since he lined up 4th at Talladega last October.
    Tony Stewart (5th) has his best starting spot since he qualified 4th at Watkins Glen last August.
    Mark Martin (8th....and seemingly very confident) has his best starting spot since he lined up 3rd at Richmond last September.
    Michael Waltrip (9th) has his best starting spot since he started 5th at Loudon last September.
    Matt Kenseth (12th) has his best starting spot since started up front at Dover last September....but that race was lined up on points. On time, this is his best qualifying effort since he started 6th at Darlington last September.
    Scott Wimmer (26th) has his best starting spot since he qualified 19th at Phoenix in November of 2002 (only 9 races).
    STREAKIN....Jimmie Johnson has 4 Top-10 starts in the last 5 races.
    The Butterfly Brigade: We've got three drivers making their first career Nextel Cup starts on Sunday. Brendan Gaughan, Kasey Kahne, and Scott Riggs all get to break in easy....with the biggest race of the season! They join Johnny Sauter, Scott Wimmer, and Brian Vickers in what promises to be an extremely entertaining Rookie of the Year contest. As usual, we'll follow it all year long in our Rumblings.
    The Trouble Train was very short this week....and this is a category that we expect may be empty more than once this season (if some of the reports flying around are accurate). Only two cars got the early out this race. Neither Kirk Shelmerdine nor Andy Hillenburg were able to race their way into the 500.
    We've got an hour and a half of pre-race on Sunday (I'm willing to endorse it for the kiddies....Lee Greenwood won't let us down) then three hours of sitting on the edge of your seat and holding your breath. Throw in a rather dicey tire situation, and there's not gonna be a whole lot of comfortable drivers out there. That makes that #8 car look even tougher.(StockCarFans.Com Nextel Cup Newsletter)(2-13-2004)

  • The first Gatorade Twin 125 at Daytona International Speedway is OVER:
    The UNOFFICIAL Top Ten (start pos in parens), lap leaders, cars out, cautions and some notes
    after 50 of 50 laps:

    pos,car#,driver,starting spot
    #8 Dale Earnhardt Jr. (2)(14 laps led), $55612
    #20 Tony Stewart (19), $40612
    #42 Jamie McMurray (6), $35612
    #15 Michael Waltrip (7)(12 laps led), $30612
    #99 Jeff Burton (9), $28612

    #18 Bobby Labonte (18), $26212
    #97 Kurt Busch (12), $25112
    #77 Brendan Gaughan (10), $24112
    #0 Ward Burton (8), $24087
    #30 Johnny Sauter (14 - engine change, to the back), $24062

    #23 Dave Blaney (17), $24037
    #41 Casey Mears (5), $24012
    #9 Kasey Kahne (4), $23987
    #16 Greg Biffle (1)(23 laps led), $23962
    #1 John Andretti (11), $23937

    (above make it in)
    below fall back on speed, provisionals or they DNF:

    #50 Derrike Cope (21), $23912
    #88 Dale Jarrett (3), $23887
    #5 Terry Labonte (16), $23837
    #14 Larry Foyt (22), $23812
    #43 Jeff Green (13), $23787

    #24 Jeff Gordon (20), 1 lap down, $23762
    #90 Andy Hillenburg (23)(1 lap led), out, $23737
    #10 Scott Riggs (15), out, $23687

    Cars on the lead lap: 20 (of 23 starters)

    Off track/out of race (2): #10-Riggs (accident-out); #90-Hillenburg (?-out);

    Laps Leaders Unofficial (4 with 3 lead changes): #16-Biffle; #90-Hillenburg; #15-Waltrip; #8-Earnhardt Jr.;

    Cautions: 1 for 6 laps

    Caution 1 - Laps 23 - 28: #10-Riggs lost a right front tire and smacked the turn 2 wall.

    Who got a lap back on each caution at Daytona - The Lucky Dog Pack?: (and their finish)

    Caution 1: none a lap down

    RACE NOTES: (as noted on TV or MRN Radio)
    ---- on lap 34, #24-Gordon came in to pit as his car is overheating but came back out on the track without losing a lap.
    ---- #90-Hillenburg didn't pit at first and led a lap, butr finally went in.
    ---- #9-Kahne and #24-Gordon made contact on pit road, spinning the #9, rear bumper damage.
    ---- All lead lap cars came in during the first caution.
    ---- #88-Jarrett seems to be running fine now.
    ---- #88-Jarrett is having some sort of rngine problems and is running towards the rear of the field.

    (see race one results below race 2 info)

  • The 2nd Gatorade Twin 125 at Daytona International Speedway is OVER:
    The UNOFFICIAL Top Ten (start pos in parens), lap leaders, cars out, cautions and some notes
    after 50 of 50 laps:

    pos,car#,driver,starting spot, $winnings
    #38-Elliott Sadler (1)(26 laps led), $56689
    #40-Sterling Marlin (6)(1 lap led), $41689
    #48-Jimmie Johnson (7), $36689
    #6-Mark Martin (10), $31689
    #29-Kevin Harvick (5), $29689

    #17-Matt Kenseth (14), $27289
    #01-Joe Nemechek (4), $26189
    #21-Ricky Rudd (2)(21 laps led), $25189
    #2-Rusty Wallace (8), $25164
    #12-Ryan Newman (21), $25139

    #19-Jeremy Mayfield (9 - engine change, to the back)(2 laps led), $25114
    #09-Johnny Benson (20), $25189
    #22-Scott Wimmer (17), $25064
    #32-Ricky Craven (16), $25039
    #31-Robby Gordon (11), $25014

    (above make it in)

    #33-Mike Skinner (18), $24989
    #45-Kyle Petty (12), $24964
    #49-Ken Schrader (15 - engine change, to the back), $24914
    #7-Jimmy Spencer (19), $24889
    #25-Brian Vickers (13), $24864

    #72-Kirk Shelmerdine (22), $24839
    #4-Kevin Lepage (3) out, $24814

    Cars on the lead lap: 20 (of 22 starters)

    Off track/out of race (1): #4-Lepage (engine-out);

    Laps Leaders Unofficial (4 with 5 lead changes): #38-Sadler; #21-Rudd; #40-Marlin; #19-Mayfield;

    Cautions: 0 for 0 laps

    RACE NOTES: (as noted on TV or MRN Radio)
    ----- the rest came in on lap 31.
    ----- on lap 30; #'s 2,25.45,19 with the #19 taking only 2 tires
    ----- five cars came in to pit on lap 29: #'s 48,22,6,12,33

  • Twin 125 Race Results at - Twin #1 - Twin #2

    Jayski's Daytona 500 Lineup and Qualifying Page
    Jayski's Gatorade Twin 125's Page

  • Gatorade Twin 125 Starting Lineups at: Lineup: Gatorade 125s, first race Lineup: Gatorade 125s, second race

  • Daytona Qualifying Results at:
    Jayski's Daytona 500 Qualifying Page (2-8-2004)

  • Caution means Caution: NASCAR officials on Thursday advised drivers to listen to their spotters and be aware of activity on the track as they leave pit road under caution. The warning was issued by managing event director David Hoots during Thursday's prerace drivers meeting at Daytona International Speedway, site of the Gatorade 125-mile qualifying races. On Sunday, a track safety worker, Roy H. Weaver, was killed in an incident in an IPower Dash series race. Weaver, 44, was picking up debris on the 2.5-mile Daytona speedway when he was struck and killed by a race car driven by Ray Paprota. "If you are coming off pit road under caution and trying to catch up with the rest of the pack, make sure you are talking to your spotter completely around the race track. Let him advise you of anything out there on the race track," Hoots told the drivers. "If you have no reason to catch up early, then take the time to do so. With one lap to go, you still have 2½ miles to catch up to the field on this race track. Take your time and do it very slowly and very cautiously."( - Jim Utter)(2-12-2004)

  • Fifteen drivers guaranteed to make the race: 15 drivers are in the 2004 Daytona 500, either by qualfying [pos 1-2], speed [pos 31-38] or provisionals [pos 39-43] no matter how they finish in the Gatorade 125's. #16-Biffle and #38-Sadler are locked in. #8-Earnhardt Jr., #21-Rudd, #88-Jarrett, #4-Lepage, #9-Kahne, #01-Nemechek, #41-Mears and #29-Harvick are at least in by speed. And five drivers if they don't get in by running in the top 15 [or 14 if the #16 or #38 finish 15th or worse in Twins] they would make the race by using a provisional: #17-Kenseth, #48-Johnson, #24-Gordon [has only used one in his career], #12-Newman and #20-Stewart. Drivers who have no provisionals to make the race and are probably not fast enough to make the race by speed would include #33-Skinner, #72-Shelmerdine and #90-Hillenburg. Other's slow and deep in the 2003 Owners Points to use a provisional: #14-Foyt, #50-Cope and #09-Benson.(2-12-2004)

  • To the Back - Twin 125's UPDATE: #19-Jeremy Mayfield and #49-Ken Schrader each will start at the rear of their qualifying race Thursday because of engine changes. Any team that changes an engine before their qualifying race will have to start at the rear of the field. Mayfield was scheduled to have started ninth; Schrader was to have started 15th.(Roanoke Times). NOTE: teams can change engines after the Twin 125's, but if changed after any of the practices, the driver has to fall to the rear of the field for the Daytona 500.(2-11-2004)
    UPDATE: #30-Johnny Sauter's team changed engines after Tuesday's practice. He'll have to start at the rear of his qualifying race today. He was scheduled to have started 14th.(Roanoke Times)(2-12-2004)

  • The Gatorade Twin 125's are scheduled to run Thursday, Feb 12th at 1:00pm/et. The races will air LIVE on TNT, PLUS Jayski will have semi-live updates right here, every 5-10-laps or so. MRN Radio / XM Satellite Radio will air the races live and will have live scoring via their Trackpass / Live Leaderboard, free trial thru the Daytona 500, then a paid service.(2-11-204)

  • Daytona 500 Wednesday Practice is over, the only one of the day for the Nextel Cup teams today, the top five were:
    #42-McMurray 191.290 [my pick to win the 500]
    #41-Mears 191.253
    #77-Gaughan 190.945
    #4-Lepage 190.702
    #22-Wimmer 190.561
    (all very early in the session)
    Slowest was #90-Hillenburg at 181.094. Not practicing was #31-Gordon.
    See speeds for all the drivers at, practice #5.(2-11-2004)

  • To the Back - Twin 125's: #19-Jeremy Mayfield and #49-Ken Schrader each will start at the rear of their qualifying race Thursday because of engine changes. Any team that changes an engine before their qualifying race will have to start at the rear of the field. Mayfield was scheduled to have started ninth; Schrader was to have started 15th.(Roanoke Times). NOTE: teams can change engines after the Twin 125's, but if changed after any of the practices, the driver has to fall to the rear of the field for the Daytona 500.(2-11-2004)

  • The 2nd Tuesday Practice [4th over all] is over, the top five were:
    #24-Gordon 191.510
    #41-Mears 191.477
    #21-Rudd 191.453
    #48-Johnson 191.388
    #42-McMurray 191.278
    Daytona 500 pole sitter, #16-Biffle was 40th
    fastest in the 1st practice, #1-Andretti was 22nd
    slowest was #90-Hillenburg at 182.912.
    See speeds at - practice 4.(2-10-2004)

  • The 1st Tuesday Practice is over, the top five were:
    #1-Andretti 191.742 [part-time team]
    #23-Blaney 191.738 [part-time team]
    #17-Kenseth 191.644
    #7-Spencer 191.550 [part-time team]
    #01-Nemechek 191.440
    Pole sitter, #16-Biffle was 27th at 189.306
    slowest was #72-Kirk Shelmerdine 183.355.
    See speeds at - practice 3.(2-10-2004)

  • Biffle #6: #16-Greg Biffle is the sixth driver to claim his first career pole position in the Daytona 500, following Ramo Stott (1976), Loy Allen (1994), Dale Jarrett (1995), Mike Skinner (1997) and Jimmie Johnson (2002).(Richmond Times Dispatch)(2-9-2004)

  • QUALIFYING is Over for the Daytona 500. #16-Greg Biffle won the pole at Daytona International Speedway for the Daytona 500, his first career Nextel Cup pole, he ran a fast lap of 188.387 and is guaranteed his starting spot as is #38-Elliott Sadler, who will start 2nd after running a speed of 188.355. The rest of the field will be filled Thursday after the running of the Twin 125's, either by their finish in the races, fall back on qualifying speed [spots 31-38] or provisionals [39-43].
    For unofficial qualifying speeds, see my Jayski's Daytona 500 Qualifying Page
    For the Gatorade Twin 125 Lineups, see my Twin 125 Lineup page.(2-8-2004)

  • The Bud Shootout: See results for each 10 laps and final results [money won], starting lineup and past news on my 2004 Budweiser Shootout Page

  • 2nd Daytona 500 Practice is over.
    The fastest in practice were:
    #38-Sadler 189.366 mph
    #21-Rudd 189.088
    #88-Jarrett 188.739
    #48-Johnson 188.407
    #45-Petty 188.403
    Slowest was #90-Hillenburg at 178.098. Three cars didn't practice: #29-Harvick and #31-Gordon [RCR Team mgr Gil Martin was interviewed and said they had nothing else to learn so why practice], and #95-Andy Belmont.
    See speeds at

  • 1st Daytona 500 Practice is over.
    The fastest in practice were:
    #01-Nemechek 188.166
    #16-Biffle 188.064
    #21-Rudd 187.958
    #8-Earnhardt Jr. 187.837
    #31-Gordon 187.641
    Slowest was #90-Hillenburg at 177.333. 45 of the 46 teams have practiced; no speeds listed for #95-Andy Belmont. Some problems: #14-Foyt lost a transmission, #19-Mayfield lost an engine.
    For speeds, see - Practice 1(2-7-2004)

  • Qualifying Order for the 2004 Daytona is up. 46 drivers are listed. First scheduled out on Sunday [12noon/et on NBC] is #4-Kevin Lepage. Last due out is #2-Rusty Wallace. See above for the links.(2-7-2004)

  • Budweiser Shootout news, lineup, results per 10 laps, final results, see my 2004 Budweiser Shootout Page

  • 45 cars show, NASCAR trying to add to the list? Next Thursday's Twin 125-mile qualifiers will be superfluous this SpeedWeeks since only 45 teams arrived for the 43-car Daytona 500 field. NASCAR officials are reported to be scrambling to add cars to the 125s.(Winston Salem Journal)(2-7-2004)
    45 cars entered: the 2004 Daytona 500 Entry list is up, only 45 drivers are listed 38 full time teams andd seven part-timers including: #09-Johnny Benson, #1-John Andretti, #14-Larry Foyt, #23-Dave Blaney, #33-Mike Skinner, #72-Kirk Shelmerdine and #95-Andy Belmont. So 2 teams will miss the race, unless more are added [see stroy below].(2-7-2004)
    UPDATE: add #90 Andy Hillenburg.(2-7-2004)

  • No Racing to the Caution Rule and Q&A

  • Jayski's - 2003 Winston Cup Race Results Page

  • How to Calculate Track Speeds: use the formula Speed = Distance divided by Time. Distance is Track Length, and Lap Time into Hours. Once hour is 3600 seconds, so the calculation for a 48 second lap at Daytona(2.5 miles) would be: Speed = 2.5 x (3600/48), = 2.5 x 75 = 187.500mph. For a 19 second lap at Bristol(.533 miles): Speed = .533 x (3600/19), = .533 x 189.474 = a speed of 100.990mph

  • How to break a tie during qualifying?(same speed/time) When drivers are tied for a starting spot during qualifying, it is broken by owners points standings(not drivers).

  • Links: Practice speeds, qualifying and results can be found at these sites:


  • Speedway death ruled accidental: The death of a Daytona International Speedway safety worker was ruled an accident Monday, but questions remain over what caused the grisly incident during Sunday's IPOWERacing Dash Series 150.(see full story at the Daytona Beach News Journal)(2-10-2004)

  • Commemorative Daytona 500 Program Distributed Coast to Coast: A commemorative newsstand edition of the award-winning Daytona 500 program will be available to race fans unable to attend NASCAR's most prestigious race - the Daytona 500. The program hit newsstands in major grocery chains and mass retail outlets throughout the nation on Feb. 3. The unique cover of the 256-page program features a special Mickey Mouse Event Car as well as s the ultimate prize in motorsports, the Harley J. Earl trophy - presented to the winner of NASCAR's most prestigious motorsports event - the Daytona 500. Although there will be 5 different Daytona 500 program covers, only the Mickey Mouse design can be purchased at newsstands nationwide. The Daytona 500 souvenir program features in-depth features on all of the events of Daytona's Speedweeks. Driver profiles, race reviews and historical retrospectives, along with hundreds of photographs, fill the 256 full-color pages. The publisher's editorial and photography staff has been recognized by various professional and media organizations, including the International Automotive Media Awards, for their work.(DIS PR)(2-9-2004)

  • Tragic News at Daytona: A Daytona International Speedway safety worker was killed Sunday afternoon when he was struck by a race car being driven by a paraplegic competitor in a race during activities leading up to next week's Daytona 500. Roy H. Weaver III, a 44-year-old track crew supervisor, was picking up debris in the Turn 2 area of the 2.5-mile track after a crash during the IPower 150 when he was struck by a race car being driven by Ray Paprota. Paprota, 41, is paralyzed from the waist down as a result of injuries he suffered in an automobile crash in 1984. He uses specially modified hand controls to accelerate, brake and change gears in his race car. Sunday's race was the first held under authority of IPower, a sanctioning body that bought what was formerly known as the NASCAR Goody's Dash Series late last year. The race had been slowed under a yellow for a wreck in Turn 4 that required Tony Billings of Pfafftown, N.C., to be cut from his car. Late Sunday, Billings was listed in stable condition at Halifax Medical Center. The cars were stopped on pit road under a red flag while the Dash series garage was cordoned off with security workers and police. The Volusia County medical examiner came to the garage and officials took photos of Paprota's car. More than two hours after the incident took place, but before Weaver's death was confirmed, the race was resumed and shortened from 60 to 40 laps. Danny Bagwell, whose Alabama-based team had helped Paprota prepare his race cars for competition, was the winner.(

  • DAYTONA USA adds IMAX Theater to Attraction Experience: Beginning in late March, early April DAYTONA USA, the official attraction of NASCAR, will be home to "NASCAR 3D: The IMAX Experience." The IMAX theater in Daytona Beach will be only one of 236 in the world. DAYTONA USA's 247-seat Pepsi Theater will be fully equipped with IMAX technology and a four-story screen as "NASCAR 3D: The IMAX Experience" puts fans in the driver's seat to explore the world of today's elite NASCAR drivers and teams.
    Narrated by Golden Globe Award-winning actor Kiefer Sutherland, "NASCAR 3D: The IMAX Experience" will feature rare behind-the-scenes glimpses as well as gripping action on the track.
    "Race fans can literally feel like they are in the drivers seat," said DAYTONA USA General Manager Mike Manning. "We're excited to offer IMAX and many other unique motorsports experiences to our guests." DAYTONA USA is a one-of-kind interactive motorsports attraction, which features a variety of hands-on activities utilizing advanced technology. The Ultimate Motorsports Experience is a high-energy experience designed to appeal to everyone, regardless of his or her level of racing knowledge or enthusiasm and includes three different simulators, an award-winning movie and "A Pit Stop Challenge."
    Founded in 1967, IMAX Corporation is one of the world's leading entertainment technology companies. IMAX's businesses include the creation and delivery of the world's best cinematic presentations using proprietary IMAX and IMAX 3D technology, and the development of the highest quality digital production and presentation. As of September 30 2003, there were more than 235 IMAX theatres operating in 36 countries. To date, more than 700 million people have enjoyed The IMAX Experience® at specially-designed theatres around the world.
    DAYTONA USA, the official motorsports attraction is open 9:00am to 7:00pm/et and holds extended hours during race events. Call (386) 947-6800 for more information or visit PR)(2-9-2004)

  • Corvette to pace the field: General Motors has provided the Official Pace Car for the Daytona 500 during the entire "Modern Era" of NASCAR and this year is no exception. The 2004 Corvette Coupe, considered "America's performance icon," will continue that tradition and pace this year's Daytona 500, the opening race of the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series on Feb. 15. Today's Corvette continues to deliver excitement by combining the perfect blend of performance, technology and content. Nearly 1.4 million Corvettes have been sold worldwide in its 51-year history. Corvette will pace four events at the Daytona International Speedway during Speedweeks this month, including the Budweiser Shootout, the Gatorade 125-Mile qualifying races, the Hershey's Kisses 300 and the Daytona 500. These four events help make up the 57 national NASCAR events Chevrolet will pace in 2004 season (26 Nextel Cup, 18 Busch, and 13 Craftsman Truck races).(GM PR)(2-8-2004)

  • President Bush to attend Daytona 500: President Bush will attend the Daytona 500 Feb. 15 in Florida. Bush plans to spend that Sunday night in Florida where his brother, Jeb, is governor, White House press secretary Scott McClellan said Friday in announcing the trip to the auto race. That same night in Wisconsin, Democrats are scheduled to hold a debate in advance of that state's primary on Feb. 17. (AP/

  • LeAnn Rimes to sing National Anthem at Daytona 500 and have a concert: Double Grammy award-winning superstar LeAnn Rimes, whose hits include "How do I Live", "Can't Fight the Moonlight", and "We Can", will headline the NEXTEL Tribute to America, the pre-race extravaganza leading up to NASCAR's most prestigious race - the Daytona 500 on Feb. 15. Rimes, who has one of the most spectacular voices in pop music, will also sing the National Anthem prior to the 46th running of the "Great American Race." Her pre-race concert, the first-of-its-kind at the Daytona International Speedway, and the National Anthem will be televised live on NBC.
    The NEXTEL-sponsored extravaganza entitled the NEXTEL Tribute to America will pay tribute to people, places and events symbolic of America and will feature nearly 4,000 cast members on the Speedway's historic five-acre tri-oval grass. The show's finale will feature Grammy Award Winning Musician, Lee Greenwood singing his marquee track, "God Bless the USA".
    In addition to Rimes, Orlando native and reigning Miss America, Ericka Dunlap, has been added to a growing list of celebrities, including Grand Marshal Ben Affleck, scheduled to take part in festivities surrounding the "Great American Race" - the Daytona 500. Tickets for Speedweeks 2004 and the 46th annual Daytona 500 are available online at or by calling 1-800-PITSHOP.(DIS PR)(2-6-2004)

  • Dodge Six-Pack is Back: The Dodge Six-Pack, one of the most popular ticket packages ever created for race fans, returns to Darlington Raceway in 2004 by popular demand. The promotion will officially kick off during the Saturday, February 7 MRN broadcast of the Budweiser Shootout, and will be available until the checkered flag falls at the Daytona 500 on Sunday, February 15, or while they last. The Dodge Six-Pack is a unique opportunity designed to offer fans an affordably-priced opportunity to attend Darlington Raceway's spring fling event, the Carolina Dodge Dealers 400 on Sunday, March 21. The package includes six reserved grandstand seats for the race. Total cost for the Six-Pack is $150. The Dodge Six-Pack will get an added push from John Boy and Billy. The popular syndicated radio talk show personalities are among NASCAR's biggest supporters. Darlington Raceway president Andrew Gurtis will talk about the track "Too Tough To Tame" during a call-in interview with John Boy and Billy on February 12, and the track will sponsor on-air promotions all week long. The Dodge Six-Pack will be available February 7 through February 15 only, or while they last. Quantities are extremely limited. The package, which costs $150, includes six seats for the home of the closest finish in NASCAR history, the Carolina Dodge Dealers 400, on Sunday, March 21 at Darlington Raceway.
    The Dodge Six-Pack is only available by calling the Raceway ticket hotline toll-free at 1.866.459.RACE (7223). This offer is not available online. For more information on upcoming events at Darlington Raceway, call 843.395.8499, or log onto PR)(2-6-2004)

  • Whoopi Goldberg Named Honorary Starter for Daytona 500: Academy, Emmy, Golden Globe, Grammy and Tony-Award-winning superstar Whoopi Goldberg will serve as Honorary Starter for the 46th annual Daytona 500. Coverage of "The Great American Race" begins Sunday, Feb. 15 at 12:00noon/et on NBC-TV. As the Daytona 500's Honorary Starter, Goldberg will drop the green flag, signaling drivers to begin racing the 2.5 mile course for its 200 laps - or 500 miles - duration. Goldberg currently headlines NBC's hit comedy "Whoopi," which she also executive produces, starring as Mavis Rae, an opinionated pop-diva-turned-hotel-owner. The series airs Tuesday nights at 8:00pm/et. For the Daytona 500 festivities, she will join other popular celebrities who have duties for the drivers. Academy Award-winner Ben Affleck ("Good Will Hunting," "Paycheck") will serve as Grand Marshal, proclaiming the command "Drivers, start your engines!" In addition, Affleck - commandeering the driver's seat of the official Grand Marshal pace car -- will also lead the 43-car field in pace laps before the race. Tickets for Speedweeks 2004 and the 46th annual Daytona 500 are available online at or by calling 1-800-PITSHOP.(DIS PR)(2-4-2004)

  • Record Daytona 500 Purse Increases Nearly $2 Million: The 46th annual Daytona 500, the biggest and most prestigious race in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series, will boast the biggest purse in the history of stock car racing. The posted awards for this year's Daytona 500 on Sunday, Feb. 15 are $15,972,313, an increase of nearly $2 million from last year's posted awards. The posted awards for last year's Daytona 500, won by Michael Waltrip, were $14,030,129. "The Daytona 500 is the ultimate prize in stock car racing," Speedway President Robin Braig said. "It only stands to reason that the biggest race of the year command the biggest purse." The first driver to take the checkered flag in the Daytona 500 will pocket a minimum of $1,391,730. The second, third, fourth and fifth-place finishers will receive a minimum of $986,325, $693,550, $541,750 and $413,950 respectively. The last-place finisher in the Daytona 500 will earn a minimum of $177,058.(DIS PR)(2-2-2004)

  • Nextel to Sponsor Daytona Pre-Race Show: Daytona International Speedway says new NASCAR title sponsor Nextel will sponsor the pre-race show and festivities before the Feb. 15 Daytona 500. The "Nextel Tribute to America" is expected to feature nearly 4,000 cast members and feature a performance of "God Bless the USA" by Lee Greenwood. Q&A Entertainment will produce the show, portions of which are expected to be broadcast by NBC.(NASCAR Scene Daily Newsletter)(1-25-2004)

  • Eagle Practices for the Daytona 500: Bird's eye view: African Fish Eagles Phoenix and Isa made an appearance at Daytona International Speedway, taking part in practice flights as they prepare for pre-race activities during the "Great American Race" on Feb. 15. Tim Smith, Assistant Supervisor of Animal Training at Special Events at Sea World in Orlando has been bringing the six-pound birds to the track for the past few weeks "giving the animals the opportunity to see the environment to feel comfortable." Phoenix has flown twice as DIS while Isa is still carrying her yellow rookie stripe. "The superstretch is nice to work the animals on because it won't change much during race time - basically it's a parking lot," Smith said. "However, the frontstretch will change dramatically during race day." Smith and his crew will continue to come out until twice a week until race day. And race day won't get here soon enough. "We take a lot of pride in being able to do venues this large is really neat for us," Smith said. "It's neat to be a part of something this big."(DIS PR)(1-22-2004)

  • DIS Medical Center Closed? Nextel Cup drivers were surprised to learn that the infield medical center was locked and no doctor was on staff during Daytona 500 testing at Daytona International Speedway. Halifax Medical Center is nearby, but drivers nevertheless expressed shock that the infield hospital was closed, particularly after NASCAR's long safety meeting with teams Tuesday. "If there are no doctors here while we're testing, that's absolutely ridiculous," Rusty Wallace said. "There must have been a major malfunction. I'm sure Mike Helton wouldn't let that happen. It's got to be an oversight, and hopefully we'll get that corrected." Bobby Hutchens, the chief engineer for Richard Childress, said, "It surprises me, because in the age we're in we've tried to improve safety, and it bothers me that there is no doctor here, to be able to assist somebody if there's a need. Just thinking about this place and the things that have happened, it really surprises me there's not a doctor on hand."
    Jeff Burton agreed: "Yes, we need to look at that. We need to make sure there is the proper staffing at tests. I don't know whose job that is, NASCAR's or the teams'. But that is something we need to address. It is certainly a question we need to ask - how is it (the infield hospital) equipped, who equipped it, who is responsible if things don't go right.
    Kenny Schrader, though, took a slightly different tack: "I don't know why there isn't a doctor in the infield. And I don't know about doctors in the infield, but if I drive this thing in the fence hard, I want a paramedic at the car. A trauma unit and a doctor who goes to all the races might be fine, but I want a guy who works 12 big traffic wrecks a month, I want him. A guy who isn't afraid to take his Bic pen and jam it in my throat to get me some air. At the track it's first-response. The people we need should be out there in the vehicles."
    NASCAR officials were not in the garage for comment.(in part from the Winston Salem Journal)(1-16-2004)

  • New Tunnel Planned at Daytona: The Daytona International Speedway plans to build a tunnel big enough to accommodate tractor trailers and RVs between Turns 1 and 2 of the tri-oval. However, the truth is the massive and costly project is on a list of capital improvements. "The five-year vision of Daytona International Speedway is up on a wall in our offices," Speedway president Robin Braig said. "With the input of the France family and what we've learned from racetracks they have built across this country, we know how important a tunnel is to a facility. We have a tunnel. It's functional and works well, but a new tunnel and many other enhancements for this track would certainly be something we'd be considering." Braig can't just order up a tunnel. He must convince International Speedway Corp.'s board that the project is needed. The board considers capital improvements for its 12 tracks and decides who gets the money. "They (ISC board) ultimately decide where the money should go," Braig said. Rumor has it, if approved, the project will start right after the Pepsi 400 in July.(Daytona Beach News Journal)(1-11-2004)

  • Tie the Knot at DIS UPDATE the lucky couple: The winning couple competing for a chance to "Tie the Knot at the Hershey's Kisses 300" NASCAR Busch Series race, will be announced at a press conference on Wednesday, Jan. 7 at 11:15 a.m. at the Daytona International Speedway Infield Media Center. Five lucky couples were selected to compete in a "Tie the Knot at the Hershey's Kisses 300" Race-off. The winning couple will "Tie the Knot" prior to the start of the Hershey's Kisses 300 NASCAR Busch Series race on Valentine's Day, February 14, 2004, at Daytona International Speedway.(DIS PR)(1-6-2004)
    UPDATE: Hershey's Kisses Tie the Knot Contest Winners: Teri Lewis and Gene Konzen, Indianapolis, Ind., beat out four other couples for the opportunity to "Tie the Knot" prior to the start of the Hershey's Kisses 300 NASCAR Busch Series race on Valentine's Day, February 14 at Daytona International Speedway. Lewis, 36, a registered nurse, and Konzen, 39, a firefighter, scored the most points in a Race-off with four other couples at Daytona International Speedway. Judges selected the couple during a Race-off, which pitted couple against couple in a number of fun and challenging events, including a simulated race game; a newlywed and trivia game, and individual couple interviews with the judges. The Grand Prize winning couple will "Tie the Knot" prior to the Hershey's Kisses 300 NASCAR Busch Series race at "The World Center of Racing" on Valentine's Day, February 14. The wedding will take place live before thousands of spectators prior to the start of the race.
    "It's wonderful," Konzen said. "We appreciate everything that you guys have to offer. Hershey's and Daytona, they were wonderful. We couldn't ask for anything else; this was a spectacular trip. It was going to be wonderful no matter what, even if we didn't win. We already said it was great to come down here."
    Being the chosen couple in this contest was a dream come true for Lewis and Konzen, who are both die-hard race fans.
    "When we got engaged and as (Teri) was telling people about that, someone told her about the contest and we thought that would be neat because we were having a really difficult time picking the date because we are so into NASCAR racing," Konzen said. "We have so many races we go to we couldn't figure out what month to have it so we had to pick the off-season anyway. This is the ultimate of all three things: Valentine's Day, Hershey's and Daytona and their grand hoopla of all races (the Daytona 500)."(DIS PR)(1-7-2004)

    Changing of the guard
    "The World Center of Racing" - Daytona International Speedway - underwent somewhat of a face-lift on Tuesday as the Winston logo panels from the twin scoring "Tri-lon" towers were removed. The 75-foot towers, located in the infield of the Speedway, have been in place since 1981. The familiar red and white Winston panels will be replaced with new NASCAR Cup sponsor NEXTEL logos in time for Speedweeks beginning in January 2004. (Daytona International Speedway photo)(12-31-2003)

  • Affleck named Daytona 500 Grand Marshal: Actor, director and writer Ben Affleck, who captured the 1997 Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay for Good Will Hunting and has starred in blockbuster films such as Armageddon and Pearl Harbor, will serve as Grand Marshal for the 46th annual Daytona 500 on Sunday, Feb. 15 - "The Great American Race." Affleck, who stars in the upcoming Paycheck, which will be released Dec. 25, will give the command "Drivers, start your engines" in NASCAR's biggest, richest and most prestigious stock car race in the world. His Grand Marshal duties also include leading the 43-car field in the pace laps from the Grand Marshal pace car. "We're excited to have Ben take part in Daytona 500 pre-race festivities to help start the first NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race of 2004," said Speedway President Robin Braig. "As a huge sports fan, I'm thrilled to serve as Grand Marshal for the 2004 Daytona 500," Affleck said. "I've heard about the excitement and competition of the Daytona 500 and I can't wait to be part of the festivities." Tickets for Speedweeks 2004 and the 46th annual Daytona 500 are available online at or by calling 1-800-PITSHOP.(DIS PR)(12-16-2003)

  • Cup drivers in the Daytona 24? Chevrolet is trying to have a big presence in the Rolex Sports Car Series’ Daytona 24 hour early next year. Daytona Prototypes are under construction at Crawford Race Cars in Denver, North Carolina, all powered by GM’s Gen III V8 engines, which GM hopes will be piloted by its Winston Cup stars. Chevrolet is looking at various driver combinations and it’s unclear how many cars will run. Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Tony Stewart are strong candidates, and Jimmy Johnson and Jeff Gordon could figure in the mix. Regular GM road racers Kelly Collins and Andy Pilgrim are on deck as well. GM sources say there is no truth to rumors that another car is slated for Bobby, Terry and Justin Labonte.(Autoweek)(11-26-2003)

  • Hershey's To Sponsor February Busch Series Race at Daytona: Daytona International Speedway and Hershey Foods officials announced the season-opening NASCAR Busch Series race at the "World Center of Racing on Feb. 14, 2004 will be called the Hershey's Kisses 300. The Hershey's Kisses 300 race will feature a specially painted Hershey's Kisses #21 Chevrolet fielded by Richard Childress Racing. Kevin Harvick will drive the Hershey's Kisses #21 car in the first Busch Series event of 2004. In addition to the Hershey's Kisses 300 sponsorship announcement, Hershey Foods also announced the "Tie the Knot at the Hershey's Kisses 300" promotion that will coincide with Feb. 14 racing event. This unique promotion offers one lucky "race fan" couple the opportunity to get married at the track in Daytona on Valentine's Day prior to the Hershey's Kisses 300 race. Complete contest details are available at PR)(10-6-2003)

  • More on DIS's Lease: A sealed document that had been stored in a safe states that International Speedway Corp.'s 25-year option to extend its lease of publicly owned land to 2032 remains valid and can be exercised anytime before 2007. That contradicts statements reported last week suggesting the Speedway "revoked" the 25-year option and might be forced in 2007 to renegotiate terms of the tax-free, low-rent deal forged in the late 1950s. Speedway attorneys requested a public meeting to find out exactly where the Daytona Beach Racing and Recreational Facilities Commission, which oversees the 443 acres underneath the Speedway, stands on the status of its lease. In a May 1994 memo, Thomas T. Cobb, longtime former attorney for the Facilities Commission, stated the Speedway and 443 acres underneath it would revert to public ownership on Nov. 8, 2007, unless a new lease is negotiated. But in the sealed documents provided to The Daytona Beach News-Journal after last week's story was published, Cobb stated the 25-year option in the original lease remains valid. It can be exercised at any time before 2007 -- giving the Speedway the right to use the public land for $20,000 a year through 2032.(Daytona Beach News Journal(9-27-2003)

  • Daytona Beach to raise the rent for DIS? In four years, the public could own the Daytona International Speedway. And if that doesn't happen, there's a chance the International Speedway Corp. will be paying considerably more to use the place. It all hinges on Nov. 8, 2007, when the Speedway's original 50-year lease expires. On that date, 443 acres of publicly owned land and everything on it -- grandstands, offices, garages and public exhibition space -- will revert to public control unless the Speedway agrees to a new lease, according to a recently discovered memo by Thomas T. Cobb, the attorney who negotiated the deal to build the track a half century ago. Cobb, longtime attorney for the five-member commission that regulates use of the property, wrote the memo in May 1994 to help the commission begin new lease negotiations. Under a new lease, the Speedway could wind up paying far more than the $10,000 a year rent it currently pays under what Cobb called a "sweetheart" deal negotiated in 1957. The Speedway doesn't think it needs to renegotiate. The multi-million dollar corporation plans in 2007 to exercise a 25-year renewal option built into the original lease, Glenn Padgett, chief counsel for operations for International Speedway Corp. said Tuesday.
    See full story at the Daytona Beach News Journal.(9-17-2003)

  • Past track news: posted in the past at Jayski's Past Track News/Rumors - Daytona International Speedway


  • #14 gets a sponsor for the 500 UPDATE: The LPGA Tour will sponsor Larry Foyt's #14 Dodge in Sunday's Daytona 500, the first time the top women's professional golf circuit has advertised on a car in NASCAR's biggest race.(Fort Worth Star Telegram)(2-14-2004)
    UPDATE: Model-shoot photos of LPGA players Laura Diaz, Cristie Kerr and Natalie Gulbis will adorn the car driven by Larry Foyt in the Daytona 500. The one-race sponsorship deal is part of the LPGA's effort to increase visibility. Given the way the pictures look, it's clear they're trying to show off some of their players in the most flattering light possible. Like NASCAR, the LPGA is based in Daytona. Diaz and Kerr will have their pictures on the front hood of Foyt's car and Gulbis' will be on the hood of the trunk.(Greenville News/AP)(2-15-2004)

  • Donlavey's team Back [make it 46]: For the 54th consecutive year, Junie Donlavey has brought his Richmond, Va.-based team to the motorsports mecca by the beach. Donlavey, whose team hasn't attempted to qualify for a Cup race since last year's Daytona 500, has entered his No. 90 Ford in this year's season-opening race. Morgan Shepherd is listed as the driver, but Donlavey still is working out details of who will pilot the car. He expects to know by today. The team owner doesn't have a sponsor for the 500-mile event, which has become a recurring theme. Donlavey last fielded a full-season effort in 2001. He contemplated shutting down his garage on Old Midlothan Turnpike after losing a sponsor midway through the 2002 season.(Richmond Times Dispatch), NASCAR has Andy Hillenburg listed as the driver.(2-7-2004)

  • Skinner back with RCR at Daytona [UPDATE]: Mike Skinner will return to Richard Childress Racing, at least for the Daytona 500. Skinner, who won the 1995 Craftsman Truck title for Childress, is racing full time in the No. 42 Toyota truck, but he will drive the #33 Cup car for RCR at Daytona with Bobby Leslie as crew chief. RCR's #2 AC Delcxo [Ron Hornaday] Busch team will pit Skinner's Cup car at Daytona. RCR pit crew coordinator David Smith says the snowstorm that hit the Carolinas last week hampered the crews' practice. "We're still digging out the stalls so we can practice," Smith says. Smith swapped the #s 2 and 21 Busch pit crews in the offseason.(Yahoo Sports/Sporting News), see past news on the RCR #33 team on my #33 RCR Team News and Links page.(2-2-2004)

  • No #74 at Daytona? sources tell me that unless the #74 BACE Motorsports team gets sponsorship the team and driver Tony Raines may not go to Daytona and run Speedweeks.(2-2-2004)

  • TNT to sponsor Burton at Daytona: Turner Network Television (TNT) is planning to sponsor Jeff Burton and the #99 Roush Racing Ford team for the Feb. 15 Daytona 500 and the Gatorade 125-mile qualifying races on Feb. 12. An official announcement is expected Wednesday. During the Daytona 500, the hood of the #99 car will carry images of 2004 NBA All-Stars, the NBA All-Star logo and TNT branding. For the 125-mile qualifying race, the entire car will carry the NBA All-Star on TNT message. Burton's team still lacks a full-time sponsor for this season.(ThatsRacin)(1-13-2004)

  • All 63: Seven drivers have competed in all 63 restrictor-plate races at Daytona and Talladega: Bill Elliott, Terry Labonte, Mark Martin, Ricky Rudd, Ken Schrader, Rusty Wallace and Michael Waltrip.(7-6-2003)

  • See the 2004 Team Chart which has links to past news for each team and info on each team.


    Car#/Driver Sponsor/Scheme/Promo Race/Date Image Link
    #8-Dale Earnhardt Jr. Born on Date Daytona 500 #8 Paint Scheme Page
    #16-Greg Biffle Jackson Hewitt Daytona 500 #16 Paint Scheme Page
    #18-Bobby Labonte Passions, the movie Daytona 500 #18 Paint Scheme Page
    #38-Elliott Sadler Black and White M&M's Daytona 500 #38 Paint Scheme Page
    #99-Jeff Burton NBA All-Star Game Daytona 500 #99 Paint Scheme Page

  • Gibson Movie on #18 Hood: Norm Miller, chairman of Dallas-based Interstate Batteries, replaced his own company's hood-sized logo with an ad for "The Passion" on NASCAR driver Bobby Labonte's #18 Chevrolet. The car will carry the ad during the Daytona 500 race Feb. 15. Miller said he feels "privileged" to offer the giveaway publicity. Miller is yet another volunteer in an effort to turn "The Passion" into a success of biblical proportions. Many think a successful opening will encourage more Christian-themed movies — and win more souls. "We need this film to have the biggest opening on record," said the Web site Journal Constitution)(2-5-2004)

  • More Paint Scheme news can be found on Paint Schemes Gallery


  • Engine Rule at Daytona: the engine rule is a little different at Daytona 500 [just like qualifying] then the other 35 races, teams must run the same engine from Saturday's first practice session (Feb. 7th) through the twin-125 mile qualifying races (Feb. 12). If a team makes a change, then it must start at the rear of the twin 125 field. After the twin 125 races, teams can make an engine change before the next day's practice session. After that, if an engine change is made, the driver will start at the rear of the. So far #19-Mayfield is the only one to change an engine, so he will fall to the rear of whatever twin 125 he runs in.(2-8-2004)

  • Johnson's streak at 69: Jimmie Johnson extended the longest current streak for consecutive weeks in the NASCAR Top 10 to 69 weeks with his 2nd place finish in last season’s championship race. It is the 9th longest streak in the modern era (1972-present). Should Johnson remain in the NASCAR Top 10 the entire 2004 season, he will pass Richard Petty and take sole possession of sixth place on the all-time list. An interesting note is that the season-opening race put a halt to all but two of the streaks, the exception being Dale Earnhardt’s record streak of 174 weeks and Sterling Marlin’s 11th-ranked run (66 weeks).(Team Lowe’s Racing PR)(2-9-2004)

  • 42 and counting: Terry Labonte enters the 2004 season carrying a string of 42 consecutive races without a DNF (did not finish), the longest current streak in NEXTEL Cup. The modern-era record is 56 straight, set by Jeff Gordon in 2001-02. Labonte was one of only two drivers who completed all 36 races last season, the other being Kevin Harvick.(HMS PR)(2-9-2004)

  • Inspection/Room of Doom at Daytona Notes: Several Nextel Cup teams had to make alterations to their Daytona 500 cars following Friday's inspections. And several teams had parts confiscated by NASCAR inspectors. The Chevy of #15-Michael Waltrip and #5-Terry Labonte were among those requiring the most additional work before they were approved. The Chevy of #24-Jeff Gordon was the first car to receive its sticker indicating it passed inspection. Among the parts confiscated by NASCAR: the rear deck lid from Jeremy Mayfield's #19-Dodge; right-side floor pans from Jimmy Spencer's #7-Dodge; braces from Labonte's Chevrolet; and the rear bumper support from the #97 Ford of Kurt Busch.(ThatsRacin)(2-7-2004)


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