We are past the qualifying races, and it is officially the full race weekend for NASCAR. It is the new era, and it already has begun with some changes in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series.
For one thing, the top-10 finishers in the Can-Am Duel qualifying races not only had the best starting positions for Sunday’s race, but they also have earned championship points heading into the 2017 season. Quite a difference from a year ago when it was only about positioning.
So, rather than bore everyone with what happened, instead it’s a focus forward on what the Daytona 500 will consist of this year, as it is a little different, just like every race in the 2017 season. Here is a quick recap of both how Sunday’s race will go, and the points system that will be used.
- All races in the 2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series will consist of three stages, each with a designated number of laps. For Sunday, the stages will be 60, 60 and 80 laps. The race is considered official after the completion of the second stage.
- At the conclusion of the first and second stages, the top-10 in the running order will earn points. First position earns 10 points, with one less point for each position after. The leader after the first and second stage will earn one playoff point to use towards the 10-race NASCAR playoffs.
- Playoff points, unlike in previous years with the 16-driver playoff field, playoff points earned during the regular season, and during the Playoffs, will carry over each round. However, the final race of the season at Homestead is still a four-driver, first man to the line, battle for the championship.
Let’s go racing.
59th Annual Daytona 500 Starting Line-Up
(Driver, Car Number, Sponsor and Make)
1. Chase Elliott, No. 24 NAPA Chevrolet
2. Dale Earnhardt Jr, No. 88 Nationwide Chevrolet
3. Jamie McMurray, No. 1 Cessna/McDonald’s Chevrolet
4. Denny Hamlin, No. 11 FedEx Express Toyota
5. Kevin Harvick, No. 4 Jimmy John’s Ford
6. Clint Bowyer, No. 14 Mobil 1 Ford
7. Brad Keselowski, No. 2 Miller Lite Ford
8. Kurt Busch, No. 41 Haas Automation/Monster Energy Ford
9. Matt Kenseth, No. 24 DeWalt Toyota
10. Austin Dillon, No. 3 DOW Chevrolet
11. Trevor Bayne, No. 6 Advocare Ford
12. Danica Patrick, No. 10 Aspen Dental Ford
13. Aric Almirola, No. 43 Smithfield Foods Ford
14. Ryan Newman, No. 31 Caterpillar Chevrolet
15. Joey Logano, No. 22 Shell/Pennzoil Ford
16. Kyle Larson, No. 42 Target Chevrolet
17. Cole Whitt, No. 72 Florida Lottery Ford
18. Ty Dillon, No. 13 GEICO Chevrolet
19. Daniel Suarez, No. 19 ARRIS Toyota
20. David Ragan, No. 38 Camping World Ford
21. Kyle Busch, No. 18 M&M’s Toyota
22. Michael McDowell, No. 95 K-Love Radio Chevrolet
23. Ricky Stenhouse Jr, No. 17 Fastenal Ford
24. Jimmie Johnson, No. 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet
25. Matt DiBenedetto, No. 32 EJ Wade Construction Ford
26. Kasey Kahne, No. 5 Farmer’s Insurance Chevrolet
27. Landon Cassill, No. 34 Love’s Ford
28. DJ Kennington, No. 96 Lordco/Castrol Toyota
29. Joey Gase, No. 23 Best Home Funishings Toyota
30. Michael Waltrip, No. 15 Aaron’s Toyota
31. Corey LaJoie, No. 83 Dustless Blasting Toyota
32. Jeffrey Earnhardt, No. 33 Little Joe’s Autos/Curtus Key Plumbing Chevrolet
33. Paul Menard, Menard’s/Peak Chevrolet
34. Erik Jones, No. 77 5-Hour Energy Extra Strength Toyota
35. Martin Truex Jr, No. 78 Bass Pro Shops/TRACKER BOATS Toyota
36. Ryan Blaney, No. 21 Motorcraft/Quick Lane Tire and Auto Center Ford
37. Chris Buescher, No. 37 Cottonelle Mega Roll Chevrolet
38. AJ Allmendinger, No. 47 Kroger Click List Chevrolet
39. Brendan Gaughan, Beard Oil Distribuiting Chevrolet
40. Elliott Sadler, No. 7 Golden Corral Chevrolet