Feb 19 | Kyle Larson Wins Inaugural UNOH Battle At The Beach Race in Thrilling Finish

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Kyle Larson overtook C.E. Falk III coming out of Turn 4 on the final lap to capture the NASCAR Whelen All-American race, the inaugural event in the UNOH Battle At The Beach at Daytona International Speedway on Monday night.

UNOH Battle At The Beach

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Kyle Larson overtook C.E. Falk III coming out of Turn 4 on the final lap to capture the NASCAR Whelen All-American race, the inaugural event in the UNOH Battle At The Beach at Daytona International Speedway on Monday night.

Larson hit the back of Falk’s car on the white flag lap in a controversial move to earn the race win. Ben Rhodes took second place while Falk recovered quickly after spinning out to take third slot.

“This is a pretty big race and I wanted to be the first to win it,” Larson said.

Falk and Larson battled during the later stages of the race with Larson overtaking Falk in Turn 3 on lap 141.  Falk regained the top spot on Lap 142 and held it until the rush for the checkered flag when the two cars made contact.

“I think I got monster trucked at the end,” Falk said.

The 150-lap race, which featured 29 drivers from 12 different U.S. states, saw nine caution flags.

Larson, who is running in all three races in the two-day UNOH Battle At The Beach, finished second in last Saturday’s Lucas Oil 200 Presented By MAVTV American Real ARCA Racing Series race. The Elk Grove, Calif. native will also compete in a fifth race in Saturday afternoon’s NASCAR Nationwide Series DRIVE4COPD 300.

“I’m looking forward to those two,” Larson said referring to Tuesday night’s events.

The 20-year-old Larson is part of the NASCAR Drive for Diversity program, which features up-and-coming drivers.

Racing action will continue Daytona International Speedway on Tuesday night with the UNOH Battle At The Beach.  The .4-mile short track built on the backstretch hosts the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Race (150 laps, 60 miles) race at 7:15 p.m. ET, followed by the K&N Pro Series Race at 8:30.  Both contests will be 150 laps and 60 miles.

Tickets are available online at http://www.daytonainternationalspeedway.com or by calling 1-800-PITSHOP.

Fans can follow NASCAR on Twitter (@NASCAR) and stay up to speed on the latest news by using hashtags #NASCAR and #DAYTONA500 and #NASCARBattle.  In addition, fans can also stay connected with Daytona International Speedway on Twitter, FacebookGoogle+ and Pinterest for all the latest news all season long.

Feb 17 | Danica Patrick Makes History by Winning Pole for the Daytona 500

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Danica Patrick made NASCAR history on Sunday at Daytona International Speedway by winning the pole for the 55th annual Daytona 500 on Sunday, Feb. 24.

Danica Patrick

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Danica Patrick made NASCAR history on Sunday at Daytona International Speedway by winning the pole for the 55th annual Daytona 500 on Sunday, Feb. 24.

Patrick, driving the No. 10 Chevrolet for Stewart-Haas Racing, turned a fast lap of 196.434 mph around the 2.5-mile tri-oval to become the first woman to win a pole for a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event.

“It’s really amazing how much effort is put into a qualifying car for Daytona and really only the front row is what sticks for Sunday,” Patrick said. “It’s nice that all that hard work can pay off and that we can give ourselves that opportunity to lead the pack down into the tri-oval for the green flag of the Daytona 500.”

Patrick’s pole tops the previous best starting position for a female in the Daytona 500, which was 18th by Janet Guthrie in 1980. She is also the first rookie to win the Daytona 500 pole since Jimmie Johnson in 2002.

Earning the Daytona 500 pole secures Patrick’s spot in the invitation-only 2014 Sprint Unlimited At Daytona.

Patrick made her first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series start in last year’s Daytona 500 and finished 38th. She will kick off her first full season in the Sprint Cup Series starting with next Sunday’s Daytona 500.

For the moment, she is enjoying the spotlight that comes with winning the Daytona 500 pole.

“I love it when people put me on the radar,” said Patrick, who was the favorite entering qualifying to win the pole. “It’s a confidence boost when people are saying, ‘I heard Mr. Childress say he thought I was the one to lose the pole.’ When people put you on the radar, that feels good to me.

“Today was about executing and doing everything right, just having a clean run. It was a little too nervous to sit on the pole throughout the whole thing. Watching all those cars, that’s nerve-wracking, especially on an empty stomach.”

The Daytona 500 pole was also special to Patrick’s crew chief Tony Gibson, who is a native of Daytona Beach.

“It’s a big deal for me, personally,” Gibson said. “I’ve been knocked off these front rows several times by just a little bit. It’s really nice to come here and get it done, especially for the Daytona 500, my hometown. It’s a big deal.”

Starting alongside Patrick will be three-time Daytona 500 champion Jeff Gordon, who earned his fourth career front row Daytona 500 start with a speed of 196.292 mph. Earlier in the day, Gordon’s No. 24 Chevrolet received significant damage after falling off the jack but the crew successfully repaired the car prior to qualifying.

“This is big to be on the front row at Daytona,” Gordon said. “It’s an accomplishment in itself just because of how many people put so much hard work into it, not just from our team but all the teams that are out here.

“When you have all winter long to prepare, you have the biggest race of the year as your first race, there’s a lot of effort that goes into those two laps.”

The remainder of the Daytona 500 starting field will be finalized in Thursday’s Budweiser Duel At Daytona 150-mile qualifying races (SPEED, MRN Radio), which begin at 2:00 p.m. ET.

2011 Daytona 500 champion Trevor Bayne, driving the No. 21 Ford for the famed Wood Brothers, qualified third with a lap of 195.976 mph while Stewart-Haas Racing cars took fourth and fifth place with 2008 Daytona 500 champion Ryan Newman (195.946) and three-time NASCAR Sprint Cup champion Tony Stewart (195.925 mph).

Stewart was proud of the effort of the crew from all three of his cars as well as Patrick’s feat.

“That’s a huge accomplishment,” Stewart said of Patrick’s pole-winning run. “It’s not like it’s been 15 or 20 years she’s been trying to do this. It’s her second trip to Daytona here in a Cup car. She’s made history in the sport. That’s stuff that we’re proud of being a part of with her. It’s something she should have a huge amount of pride in.

“It’s never been done. There’s one person that can be the first to do anything.”

Next on track will be the UNOH Battle At The Beach, which will showcase the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series, NASCAR K&N Pro Series and NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour Monday and Tuesday on the .4-mile short track located on the backstretch.

Tickets for all remaining Budweiser Speedweeks events are available online at www.daytonainternationalspeedway.com or by calling 1-800-PITSHOP.

Fans can follow NASCAR on Twitter (@NASCAR) and stay up to speed on the latest news by using hashtags #NASCAR and #DAYTONA500 and #NASCARBattle.  In addition, fans can also stay connected with Daytona International Speedway on Twitter, FacebookGoogle+ and Pinterest for all the latest news all season long.

Feb 17 | NASCAR DRIVERS AMONG THE NEARLY 1,400 TO RUN

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A brisk morning for Daytona Beach in February, provided great running conditions for the nearly 1,400 runners that registered for the Daytona Beach Half Marathon. Several NASCAR greats were in the field, including five-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson, two-time Daytona 500 champion Michael Waltrip, Kasey Kahne and Aric Almirola.

Half Marathon

DAYTONA BEACH (February 17, 2013) – A brisk morning for Daytona Beach in February, provided great running conditions for the nearly 1,400 runners that registered for the Daytona Beach Half Marathon. Several NASCAR greats were in the field, including five-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson, two-time Daytona 500 champion Michael Waltrip, Kasey Kahne and Aric Almirola.

“That was an awesome race,” said Jimmie Johnson just minutes after finishing the half marathon in a time of 1:29:48. “I met my goal, so I'm really excited about that. The course was really cool and there were a lot of people along the way cheering, the DJ at the bridge pumping music out, and people were even running in 48 gear.”

The men’s winner was Joshua Guerrero, from Daytona Beach with a time of 1:16:00. The women’s winner was Katie Hoover, from Ormond Beach with a time of 1:26:18. A notable achievement, Daytona Beach native, Eddie Roseboom completed a goal today of running 50 half marathons before he turned 50.

Hosted by Volusia County, the Daytona International Speedway and the Central Florida Sports Commission, the Daytona Beach Half Marathon was a new addition to the Budweiser Speedweeks lineup this year, taking place just one week before the 55th running of “The Great American Race” – the Daytona 500. Previously held in October, the move to February allowed race organizers to further incorporate the racing theme into the already unique event. In addition to NASCAR drivers participating in the race, classic race cars were placed along the course and each runner received 2 tickets to the DAYTONA 500 Qualifying Presented by Kroger, which is held today at 1pm, just 3 hours after the last runner crosses the finish line.

“The Daytona Beach Half Marathon is a key part of the Sports Commission’s strategy to have Volusia County get more of its fair share of sports,” said John Bisignano, Central Florida Sports Commission President/CEO. “It starts with a high performance team - Jim Dinneen & his Volusia County team, Joie Chitwood & the Daytona International Speedway team and the Central Florida Sports Commission team. It continues with a unique product - home of ‘The Great American Race’ and ‘The World’s Most Famous Beach’ and finishes with a focused effort to bring more high quality and unique events that drive sports tourism to Volusia County. It is a new day for Sports Tourism in Volusia and this is only the beginning.”

Runners began the half marathon on pit road at Daytona International Speedway and circled around the first two miles of the track, exiting the track at Gate 7 and heading east on International Speedway Blvd.  Runners continued over the bridge getting their first glimpse of the Halifax River and the beach, finally reaching “The World’s Most Famous Beach” at approximately the 7.1 mile mark. New for this year, runners then ran on the beach for approximately a 10th of a mile, getting an unobstructed view of the ocean as the sun rose on the beautiful horizon. Returning to the roads of Daytona Beach, runners then headed back to the Speedway for the finish and a trip to Gatorade Victory Lane.

"Bringing together the iconic Daytona International Speedway and ‘The World’s Most Famous Beach,’ provides this race a most exciting experience that no other race can duplicate,” said Volusia County Manager, Jim Dinneen, who also ran the half marathon today. "This race has enormous potential for our community and we look forward to growing it into one of the most unique races in the nation.”

Complete results can be found at the Dayton Beach Half Marathon website, www.daytonabeachhalf.com or at www.altavistasports.com. The date for the 2014 Daytona Beach Half Marathon will be released in the coming weeks. For real time updates and news, like the race on Facebook @Daytona Beach Half Marathon or follow on twitter @daytonahalf.

Tickets for all Budweiser Speedweeks At Daytona events are also available online at www.daytonainternationalspeedway.com or by calling 1-800-PITSHOP. Fans can also stay connected with Daytona International Speedway on Twitter, FacebookGoogle+ and Pinterest for the latest news all season long.

About CFSC: The Central Florida Sports Commission strategically solicits, creates and supports marquee sports-related events and businesses that enhance our community’s economy. The Sports Commission represents the counties of Lake, Orange, Osceola, Seminole and Volusia, as well as the City of Orlando. The Sports Commission also produces sports-related programs for the residents of Central Florida including the Celebrity Mascot Games, the SPORTYS, Breakfast of Champions and the Daytona Beach Half Marathon. For more information, please visit www.centralfloridasports.org.

Feb 17 | Kevin Harvick Captures Third Sprint Unlimited

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Kevin Harvick made his No. 29 Budweiser Chevrolet as wide as he could in the final laps, holding off repeated challenges for the lead on his way to victory Saturday night in The Sprint Unlimited at Daytona International Speedway.

Harvick

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Kevin Harvick made his No. 29 Budweiser Chevrolet as wide as he could in the final laps, holding off repeated challenges for the lead on his way to victory Saturday night in The Sprint Unlimited at Daytona International Speedway.

On the last lap, Harvick blocked both Greg Biffle and Tony Stewart to win his third career Sprint Unlimited, NASCAR’s fan-favorite non-points event that featured the debut of the Gen-6 race car. Harvick’s previous Sprint Unlimited wins came in 2009 and 2010.

“Any time you’re in Victory Lane here in Daytona, it’s a great day,” Harvick said. “When you’re coming from white (flag) to checkered, it’s whatever you have to do to make it happen. It was a great day for our Budweiser Chevy and I’m glad we got Speedweeks started off the right way.”

Tony Stewart captured the event’s first 30-lap segment, while Harvick won the second 25-lap segment and the final 20-lap dash. Overall, Harvick led 40 of the 75 laps.

“I was nervous about the 20 (Matt Kenseth) and the 14 (Stewart). I thought their cars were a little bit better than what we had,” Harvick said. “I felt (Kenseth) had the strongest car and he could make a lot happen on the bottom by himself. So, I was glad to see him get shuffled back there.”

Biffle and Joey Logano rounded out the top three while Stewart finished fourth.

            “That is why I haven’t won a Daytona 500 yet,” Stewart said of the last lap. “I’m not quite sure exactly which move to make. We learned a lot. The good thing is we have 500 miles to get it done (next) weekend. This thing was fast today.”

The format for selecting The Sprint Unlimited field of drivers returned to its roots in 2013. The eligible field of drivers consisted of pole winners from the 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season and past winners of The Sprint Unlimited who have attempted to qualify for at least one race during the 2012 season.

In addition, race fans had the final voice in selecting the starting lineup, choosing from three different options. Fans in attendance on Saturday night voted that the 19-car field would line up in the order in which drivers won their first pole last season.

Also, fans in attendance were eligible to receive special upgraded race experiences including roles as Grand Marshal, Honorary Starter, and trophy presenter. Fans delivered the trophy to Gatorade Victory Lane and participated in driver introductions. 

Race fans shaped the race by voting on race elements such as length of each race segment, type of team pit stop after first segment, how many cars would be eliminated after the second segment and the type of fire suit Miss Sprint Cup would wear.

Race activity picks up Sunday afternoon at 1:05 p.m. with Daytona 500 Qualifying Presented By Kroger.

Tickets for all Budweiser Speedweeks events are available online at www.daytonainternationalspeedway.com or by calling 1-800-PITSHOP.

Fans can also stay connected with Daytona International Speedway on Twitter, FacebookGoogle+ and Pinterest for the latest news all season long.

Feb 16 | Lucas Oil 200 Final Results

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Check out the Lucas Oil 200 results!

1 1 15 John Wes Townley/Watkinsville GA Zaxby's Toyota 80 Running
2 11 4 Kyle Larson/Elk Grove CA Cessna Chevrolet 80 Running
3 7 16 Ricky Ehrgott/New York NY Sandvik Coromant-Rev1 Power Services Chevrolet 80 Running
4 19 44 Frank Kimmel/Clarksville IN Ansell-Menards Toyota 80 Running
5 18 82 Sean Corr/Goshen NY Warriors In The Workplace-RoushYates Ford 80 Running
6 15 92 Brennan Newberry/Bakersfield CA Fight For Life Chevrolet 80 Running
7 9 32 Mason Mingus/Brentwood TN 811 Call Before You Dig-Diamond Equipment Toyota 80 Running
8 16 62 Mark Thompson/Cartersville GA Phoenix Air Chevrolet 80 Running
9 29 54 Matt Kurzejewski/Mansfield PA Costy's Energy Services-Lexington Daytona Dodge 80 Running
10 12 52 Chad Boat/Phoenix AZ Curb Records Chevrolet 80 Running
11 14 22 Michel Disdier/Nice France auto-us.com Dodge 80 Running
12 10 77 Tom Hessert/Cherry Hill NJ Barbera's Autoland-Cunningham Motorsports Dodge 80 Running
13 23 99 Mason Mitchell/W. Des Moines IA Roulo Brothers Racing Ford 80 Running
14 24 08 Clay Campbell/Martinsville VA Mountain Dew Ford 80 Running
15 30 02 Josh Williams/Port Charlotte FL Southwest Florida Cable Construction Ford 80 Running
16 22 42 Bo Lemastus/Louisville KY Crosley Radio Dodge 80 Running
17 40 88 Buster Graham/Lafayette LA Don Mashburn Inc Ford 79 Running
18 26 19 Donnie Neuenberger/Edgewater MD Eagle Convenience Stores Chevrolet 79 Running
19 28 75 Benny Chastain/Tallahassee FL Bob Schacht Motorsports Chevrolet 79 Running
20 39 06 Dexter Stacy/Kahnawake Quebec Maddie's Place Chevrolet 79 Running
21 32 23 Spencer Gallagher/Las Vegas NV Allegiant Air Chevrolet 79 Running
22 34 2 Thomas Praytor/Mobile AL ARCA Mobile 200-RoushYates Ford 78 Running
23 37 34 Rick Clifton/Circleville OH BASF Chevrolet 78 Running
24 25 30 Terry Jones/Amherstburg Ontario J-ARR Excavating Dodge 78 Running
25 36 10 Ed Pompa/Ballston Spa NY Milton Cat-Double H Ranch Chevrolet 77 Running
26 38 48 James Hylton/Inman SC Radon.com Ford 77 Running
27 31 97 Roger Carter/Sunfield MI RoadRunnerTheMovie.com/I-96 Speedway Dodge 76 Running
28 2 35 Milka Duno/Caracas Venezuela CANTV-Milka Way Toyota 76 Running
29 3 5 Bobby Gerhart/Lebanon PA MAVTV TV American Real Chevrolet 75 Fuel Pump
30 8 17 Chris Buescher/Prosper TX Roulo Brothers Racing Ford 74 Running
31 13 25 Justin Boston/Baltimore MD ZLOOP Computer & Electronics Recycling Centers Toyota 41 Accident
32 35 40 Galen Hassler/Columbia MO CheapGasPromo.com Dodge 39 Engine
33 20 68 Will Kimmel/Sellersburg IN Gary Yeomans-Clarksville Schwinn Ford 26 Accident
34 21 6 Caleb Armstrong/New Castle IN Eddie Sharp Racing Chevrolet 20 Accident
35 4 55 Darrell Wallace/Mobile AL Toyota Manufacturing Toyota 19 Accident
36 27 11 Brett Hudson/Owensboro KY Hudson Performance Drivelines-Warrick Tubing Dodge 19 Accident
37 33 69 Steve Kemp/Justin TX AntlerHuntRanch.com Ford 19 Accident
38 17 3 Drew Charlson/New Bremen OH Aluma Aluminum Trailers Chevrolet 19 Accident
39 6 09 Grant Enfinger/Fairhope AL Motor Honey-Casite.com Ford 12 Rear End
40 5 94 Julien Jousse/St. Tropez France Dave Leiner Racing-Barbarac.fr Toyota 9 Engine

Feb 16 | John Wes Townley Wins 50th Annual Lucas Oil 200 Presented By MAVTV American Real

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John Wes Townley started on the pole and finished in Gatorade Victory Lane Saturday capturing the 50th annual Lucas Oil 200 presented by MAVTV American Real at Daytona International Speedway.

Lucas Oil 200

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – John Wes Townley started on the pole and finished in Gatorade Victory Lane Saturday capturing the 50th annual Lucas Oil 200 presented by MAVTV American Real at Daytona International Speedway.

The race marked Townley’s eighth start at the “World Center of Racing,” and his first career pole and win in the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards. His previous best finish in the series also came at DIS when he finished third in 2010.

“It still hasn’t sunk all in,” said Townley of the win, which gave Venturini Motorsports their first, long-awaited victory on the high banks of Daytona. “It’s one thing to win your first race in ARCA; it’s another to win at Daytona.

“Personally, this is priceless,” Townley continued. “I almost wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world except my family. It’s a real honor to win at Daytona.”

Townley has raced well in the ARCA Series on the 2.5-mile tri-oval, logging four top-11 finishes in as many starts. Townley was a contender for the win right off of the truck, with the No. 15 Zaxby’s Toyota posting the fastest laps during qualifying and practice. He then went on to lead nine laps during the race, including the last eight.

Leading a race-high 55 laps on the night was eight-time and defending race winner Bobby Gerhart, who holds the record for the most starts (26) and the most laps completed (1,781) in the kickoff event to the stock car portion of Budweiser Speedweeks. In the lead with eight laps to go, Gerhart’s No. 5 Chevrolet slowed coming off Turn 4, allowing Townley to pass him for the lead. Two laps later, Gerhart’s car would come to a rest on the backstretch.

Rounding out the top five were Kyle Larson, Ricky Ehrgott, nine-time ARCA Series champion Frank Kimmel and 2012 race polesitter Sean Corr.

Drivers participating in the 80-lap opening act to the star-studded Sprint Unlimited included 20 drivers experiencing their first competitive laps at DIS; Martinsville Speedway track president Clay Campbell, who finished 14th; and 78-year-old James Hylton, who finished 26th. The race marks Hylton’s last at the prestigious track as he is retiring at the end of the season after 50 years of NASCAR racing.

Tickets for all Budweiser Speedweeks events are available online at www.daytonainternationalspeedway.com or by calling 1-800-PITSHOP.

Fans can also stay connected with Daytona International Speedway on Twitter, FacebookGoogle+ and Pinterest for the latest news all season long.

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