DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – The field for the 2011 Budweiser Shootout at Daytona will feature former NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champions, the 2010 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup field, a host of former outstanding rookies and a collection of previous winners at the “World Center of Racing.” Adding to the drama of the 33rd annual season-opening event, this field of drivers will compete for the first time on Daytona’s new asphalt.
Criteria are based upon the following qualifications, with eligibility based on a driver having competed in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series within the last two seasons:
• The 12 drivers that qualified for the 2010 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup
• Past NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champions
• Past Budweiser Shootout champions
• Past Daytona 500 and Coke Zero 400 Powered By Coca-Cola champions
• NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Rookie of the Year drivers from 2001-2010
Daytona International Speedway President Joie Chitwood III said, “Race fans expect to see NASCAR’s best drivers compete in the Budweiser Shootout to kick off the 2011 racing season, and this star-studded line-up will not disappoint when they take the green flag for the first time on the new asphalt. The Budweiser Shootout has showcased some of the most thrilling racing over the years, and our fans are in for an exciting night on February 12th.”
“For more than 30 years, the NASCAR Sprint Cup season has kicked-off with the Budweiser Shootout at Daytona International Speedway, and we’re proud to continue that tradition,” said Mark Wright, vice president of media, sports & entertainment marketing, Anheuser-Busch. “With the new qualification rules allowing for more of today’s biggest stars to compete under the lights at Daytona, fans can expect a great race at this year’s Budweiser Shootout.”
The race distance will continue to be 75 laps (187.5 miles), consisting of two segments – 25 and 50 laps. Both green-flag laps and yellow-flag laps will count. Between segments there will be a 10-minute pit stop allowing teams to pit and change tires, add fuel and make normal chassis adjustments.
Tickets for the Budweiser Shootout start at $39, with special advance pricing available for tickets purchased in January, and admission is free for children 12 and under. Starting positions will again be determined by a blind-draw at the annual Budweiser Shootout Draw Party on Friday, Feb. 11 at 8 p.m. on the SPEED stage in the Midway, outside Turn 4. The Draw Party is free to the public.
The Budweiser Shootout – a “non-points” event for NASCAR Sprint Cup competitors – was first held in 1979, originally known as the Busch Clash. Kevin Harvick has won the last two events. The green flag is set for 8:10 p.m. on Feb. 12, with FOX and MRN broadcasting live.
Tickets for the 33rd Budweiser Shootout and all 2011 Speedweeks events are now available online at www.daytonainternationalspeedway.com or by calling 1-800-PITSHOP.
Drivers eligible for the 2011 Budweiser Shootout include:
2010 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Drivers
Others (criteria in parentheses)
John Andretti (Coke Zero 400)
Geoff Bodine (Daytona 500, Budweiser Shootout)
Kevin Conway (Series rookie of the year)
Derrike Cope (Daytona 500)
Dale Earnhardt Jr. (Daytona 500, Coke Zero 400, Budweiser Shootout)
Bill Elliott (Series champion, Daytona 500, Coke Zero 400, Budweiser Shootout)
Kasey Kahne (Series rookie of the year)
Bobby Labonte (Series champion)
Terry Labonte (Series champion, Budweiser Shootout)
Joey Logano (Series rookie of the year)
Sterling Marlin (Daytona 500, Coke Zero 400)
Mark Martin (Budweiser Shootout)
Jamie McMurray (Daytona 500, Coke Zero 400, Series rookie of the year)
Juan Pablo Montoya (Series rookie of the year)
Ryan Newman (Daytona 500, Series rookie of the year)
Ken Schrader (Budweiser Shootout)
Regan Smith (Series rookie of the year)
Michael Waltrip (Daytona 500, Coke Zero 400)