The warm sun of the East Coast of Florida. The welcoming breezes coming off the Atlantic where I-95 and I-4 intersect. The roar of the engines coming from the big old superspeedway that everyone can identify.
Daytona in February means a lot of things to a lot of people. It is the racing version of the first crack of the bat on Opening Day, the opening tip of March Madness and the first tee shot in Augusta all rolled into one.
For you, it is also a chance to win $25,000 on FOX’s Super 6 for the Great American race. Just pick the finishing positions correctly for the six drivers listed in the Super 6 app that’s free to download and you could win the grand prize.
Here are some notes about the six drivers and how they have faired in the kickoff race of the NASCAR season.
The Cup series winner for the first time back in 2020, Elliott has made the NASCAR playoffs in all five seasons that he’s been on the major circuit. One thing he has not done, however, is race well in the Daytona 500. During his previous five February trips, Elliott has finished 37th (2016), 14th (2017), 33rd (2018), 17th (2019) and 17th (2020). He had crashes that ended the 2018 and 2019 runs for the checkered flag. Three of those years – 2016, 2017 and 2018- Elliott started on the poll. If there’s a good thing for Elliott to fall back on, he finished second at the Coke Zero Sugar 400 there in August, 2020 behind William Byron. Perhaps that’s a stepping stone for success this February
Hamlin is a three time winner of the Great American Race, including back to back wins in 2019 and 2020 for Joe Gibbs Racing. All three times that Hamlin has won the race, he has started 10th or 11th in the starting grid. Since 2014, Hamlin has been a sure money bet to finish in the Top 5 – his only time outside it was a 17th place showing in 2017. And if you want to feel even better about Hamlin’s position, consider that his car has been running at the end of every Daytona 500 he’s finished.
Sunday will mark Busch’s 31st race overall at Daytona Speedway, his 15th 500 mile race and it is still one that has eluded the two-time NASCAR Cup series champion. His best finish at a 500 was his second place showing in 2019 when he finished behind Hamlin. This year, Busch will take to the track with a new team after a split with former crew chief Andrew Stevens. Ben Beshore is the new crew chief for the No. 18 car, so Sunday could be a bit of a trial and error day for Bush and his new crew.
Keselowski and No. 2 car have 23 starts at Daytona Speedway and this will be his 12th start in the Great American Race. The 500 has not always been kind to Keselowski – his best finish was a third place one in 2014 behind Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Denny Hamlin. In recent year, the first race of the season has seen Keselowski finish 27th (2017), 32nd (2018), 12th (2019) and 36 (2020). Six of his last eight races at Daytona- both in February and later in the season- have ended with him crashing. Last year, it was after leading for 30 laps.
Martin Truex Jr.
The 2017 Cup Series champion will make his 17th start in the Daytona 500 and his 32nd start at the Speedway, which has not always been kind to him. Truex has no wins in any race at Daytona with three Top 5s and 5 Top 10s with eight did not finishes. That includes last year’s 500, where he was taken out on a crash on Lap 187 and ended up finishing 32nd. His 500 mile race has ended in crashes the last two years. He did finish second to Hamlin in 2016 – his best finish in the Great American race. Since then, his best finish was 13th in 2017.
Logano will make his 13th start in the Daytona 500 on Sunday and his 25th start at the superspeedway. He won the race in 2015, beating Kevin Harvick out for the title. Since then, he’s had four finishes in the top 6 over the next five years. His 2020 race ended with a 26th place finish following a crash in lap 201 – the first time that he left the 500 early since his first try in 2009.
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