Jun 25 | Almirola Takes Big Swings at Batting Practice with the
Tampa Bay Rays

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On Tuesday, things came full circle as Almirola returned to his hometown to participate in batting practice with the Tampa Bay Rays as he promoted the upcoming Coke Zero 400 Powered By Coca-Cola on Saturday, July 5.

Aric Almirola with Joe Madden and Joie Chitwood

When growing up in the Tampa Bay area, Aric Almirola was faced with a difficult decision – pursue a career in baseball or auto racing.

Almirola opted for a career on four wheels and is currently in his third NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season driving the famed No. 43 for Richard Petty Motorsports.

“Right before I went to high school, I had to make that decision, do I want to race or try to play baseball,” Almirola said. “What do I want to do? I chose racing and never looked back.”

On Tuesday, things came full circle as Almirola returned to his hometown to participate in batting practice with the Tampa Bay Rays as he promoted the upcoming Coke Zero 400 Powered By Coca-Cola on Saturday, July 5.

It was the second straight year that Almirola visited with the Rays. Last year, he threw out the first pitch. This year, he got to take the field and swing for the fences.

“I haven’t hit a baseball in literally 15 years,” Almirola said. “To get in the cage and hit some balls was really good. I got a few out of the infield.

“My goal was not to swing and miss too many times which I didn’t. If the outfield would be about 270 (feet), I might have gotten a couple out here. But 370 is a reach for me.”

The Rays were kicking off an interleague series with the Pittsburgh Pirates. In addition to batting practice, Almirola gave Rays manager Joe Maddon a crew shirt while fellow Tampa native and Daytona International Speedway President Joie Chitwood III presented a Rays-themed driver’s helmet autographed by all 43 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers.

Maddon gave Almirola a Rays autographed batting helmet with the special message: “Aroma matters: Stay fast.”

Almirola visited with Pittsburgh Pirates star Andrew McCutchen, 2013 NL MVP and three-time All-Star.

Almirola will make his second visit of the year to Daytona International Speedway next week for the Coke Zero 400. Earlier this year in the season-opening Daytona 500, he was collected in a multi-car crash and finished 39th.

He hopes to avoid trouble and have an opportunity to win at his hometown track in the mid-summer classic and secure a spot in the NASCAR Chase for the Sprint Cup.

“I want to win there more than I want to win anywhere,” Almirola said. “For whatever reason, I always have some sort of bad luck. Hopefully, knock on wood, this year we won’t have any bad luck when we show up to go Fourth of July racing.”

The stars of NASCAR return to Daytona International Speedway on July 3-5. Tickets to the Coke Zero 400 Powered By Coca-Cola NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race and the Subway Firecracker 250 Powered By Coca-Cola NASCAR Nationwide Series race are available by calling 1-800-PITSHOP or online at www.daytonainternationalspeedway.com.

You can also catch the Coke Zero 400 Powered By Coca-Cola live from Daytona International Speedway on Saturday, July 5 at 6:30 p.m. ET on TNT. The race will also be broadcast on MRN Radio and SiriusXM.

Fans can follow NASCAR and stay up to speed on the latest news by using hashtag #NASCAR and #COKEZERO400. Fans can also stay connected with Daytona International Speedway on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest for the latest news all season long. Fans can follow the latest on DAYTONA Rising, the $400 million frontstretch renovation at the “World Center of Racing” by using #DAYTONARising on Twitter or visiting www.daytonarising.com.

Jun 18 | Daytona International Speedway to Host Red Bull Global Rallycross

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On Aug. 22-23, Daytona International Speedway will host the seventh round of the 2014 Red Bull Global Rallycross season.

Red Bull Global Rallycross

Daytona International Speedway annually hosts stock cars, sports cars, motorcycles and go-karts. The “World Center of Racing” is now adding a new form of motorsport to its event calendar – rallycross.

On Aug. 22-23, Daytona International Speedway will host the seventh round of the 2014 Red Bull Global Rallycross season. Currently in its fourth year, Red Bull Global Rallycross  competes across the world with a 10-race schedule that also includes events in marquee locations like Barbados, New York, Seattle, and Las Vegas.

“We’re excited to be a part of Red Bull Global Rallycross,” Daytona International Speedway President Joie Chitwood III said. “On a challenging course located inside the Speedway, this new event to our calendar will showcase talented athletes battling side-by-side in a unique combination of horsepower, sliding and flight.”

Among the rallying and action sports athletes that compete in Red Bull Global Rallycross are Ken Block, Brian Deegan, Scott Speed, Nelson Piquet Jr. and Tanner Foust.

On a track that will include portions of Daytona’s famed road course asphalt and a challenging dirt section including an 8’ jump, drivers will slide, bang and fly in manufacturer-backed entries from Ford, Hyundai, Subaru, and Volkswagen. Red Bull Global Rallycross Supercars produce 600 horsepower and accelerate from 0 to 60 miles per hour in less than two seconds.

Red Bull Global Rallycross features an open paddock where fans are able to walk through the garages, engage the drivers and watch the mechanics wrench on the cars.

A detailed two-day event schedule will be released in the coming weeks.

Tickets for Red Bull Global Rallycross are on sale now by calling 1-800-PITSHOP or by visiting www.daytonainternationalspeedway.com. Race fans can purchase in advance to save 30 percent on a two-day admission, which are available for $35 for adults and $10 for ages 6-12. Daily admissions are available at the gate.

The feature race is scheduled for 2:30 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 23 and will be broadcast live on NBC. For more information on Red Bull Global Rallycross, please visit www.redbullglobalrallycross.com.

Fans can stay connected with Daytona International Speedway on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest for the latest news all season long.  Fans can follow the latest on DAYTONA Rising, the $400 million frontstretch renovation at the “World Center of Racing” by using #DAYTONARising on Twitter or visiting www.daytonarising.com.

About Red Bull Global Rallycross

Designed to produce the fastest and most exciting racing in motorsports, Red Bull Global Rallycross pits small production-based cars against each other in door-to-door racing featuring dirt, asphalt, and table-top jumps. With enhanced engineering and safety features, the cars produce 600 horsepower and can accelerate from 0-60 miles per hour in less than two seconds, and can also withstand 70-foot jumps and other vehicle contact. For more information visit www.RedBullGlobalRallycross.com.

Jun 17 | Four Medal of Honor Recipients to be Honored During Coke Zero 400 Weekend Powered By Coca-Cola

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This is the sixth consecutive year that the Speedway has honored Congressional Medal of Honor recipients. The program actually started back in the 1970s by Bill France Sr.

During the upcoming Coke Zero 400 Weekend Powered By Coca-Cola on July 3-5, Daytona International Speedway will pay tribute to four Congressional Medal of Honor recipients.

The Medal of Honor recipients, all from the Vietnam War, are:

  • Don Jenkins, Staff Sergeant, U.S. Army
  • Melvin Morris, Staff Sergeant, U.S. Army
  • Gary Littrell, Command Sergeant Major, U.S. Army
  • Robert Patterson, Command Sergeant Major, U.S. Army

For complete biographies on the four Congressional Medal of Honor recipients, visit http://www.cmohs.org/

This is the sixth consecutive year that the Speedway has honored Congressional Medal of Honor recipients. The program actually started back in the 1970s by Bill France Sr.

“We’re honored to host and salute these four Medal of Honor recipients during the Coke Zero 400 Weekend,” Daytona International Speedway President Joie Chitwood III said. “These four individuals have been recognized with our nation’s highest military honor for their heroic actions in combat and we look forward to honoring them during our Independence Day holiday weekend.”

All four Medal of Honor recipients will be recognized during a special luncheon on Friday at the Bill France Room, will attend driver’s meetings and participate in pre-race ceremonies for both the Subway Firecracker 250 Powered By Coca-Cola NASCAR Nationwide Series race on Friday night, July 4 and the Coke Zero 400 Powered By Coca-Cola NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race on Saturday night, July 5.

During Saturday’s 56th annual Coke Zero 400 Powered By Coca-Cola, a special salute will take place for the four Medal of Honor recipients during pre-race ceremonies.

In addition, the four Medal of Honor recipients will take part in an autograph session with race fans in the Sprint FANZONE on Saturday prior to the Coke Zero 400 Powered By Coca-Cola.

The Medal of Honor is the highest military decoration awarded by the United States government. It’s bestowed on a member of the United States armed forces who distinguishes himself or herself conspicuously by gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his or her life above and beyond the call of duty while engaged in an action against an enemy of the United States.

The stars of NASCAR return to Daytona International Speedway on July 3-5. Tickets to the Coke Zero 400 Powered By Coca-Cola NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race and the Subway Firecracker 250 Powered By Coca-Cola NASCAR Nationwide Series race are available by calling 1-800-PITSHOP or online at www.daytonainternationalspeedway.com.

Fans can follow NASCAR and stay up to speed on the latest news by using hashtag #NASCAR and #COKEZERO400. Fans can also stay connected with Daytona International Speedway on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest for the latest news all season long. Fans can also follow the latest on DAYTONA Rising, the $400 million frontstretch renovation at the “World Center of Racing” by using #DAYTONARising on Twitter or visiting www.daytonarising.com.

Jun 13 | Photo Opportunity with DAYTONA 500-Winning No. 88 Car, Collectible DVD Part of Special Coke Zero 400 Ticket Offer

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All eyes will be on Dale Earnhardt Jr. as he tries to sweep both the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Daytona International Speedway in 2014 and we have the ticket package for his fans to witness his attempt at history.

Dale Earnhardt Jr

During the upcoming Coke Zero 400 Powered By Coca-Cola on Saturday, July 5, all eyes will be on Dale Earnhardt Jr. as he tries to sweep both the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Daytona International Speedway in 2014.

Drivers to previously to sweep the DAYTONA 500 and the Coke Zero 400 in the same season are Jimmie Johnson (2013), Bobby Allison (1982), Fireball Roberts (1962), Cale Yarborough (1968) and LeeRoy Yarbrough (1969).

And as the driver of the No. 88 National Guard Chevrolet pursues history, the “World Center of Racing” has put together a special ticket offer around the two-time DAYTONA 500 champion.

 

 

The ticket package includes:

  • A Coke Zero 400 Powered By Coca-Cola grandstand ticket
  • Dale Earnhardt Jr. 2014 DAYTONA 500 2-Time Champion Collectible DVD
  • Commemorative photo with Dale Jr.’s No. 88 DAYTONA 500 champion car on race weekend

Tickets for the special ticket offer start at $63 and are available by clicking here or by calling 1-800-PITSHOP.

 

The stars of NASCAR return to Daytona International Speedway on July 3-5. Tickets to the Coke Zero 400 Powered By Coca-Cola NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race and the Subway Firecracker 250 Powered By Coca-Cola NASCAR Nationwide Series race are available by calling 1-800-PITSHOP or online at www.daytonainternationalspeedway.com.

Fans can follow NASCAR and stay up to speed on the latest news by using hashtag #NASCAR and #COKEZERO400. Fans can also stay connected with Daytona International Speedway on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest for the latest news all season long. Fans can follow the latest on DAYTONA Rising, the $400 million frontstretch renovation at the “World Center of Racing” by using #DAYTONARising on Twitter or visiting www.daytonarising.com.

Jun 11 | McMurray, Chitwood Visit Jacksonville Jaguars Training Facility

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“Speed in racing is a big deal,” Chitwood said. “When you go out there and see these athletes at speed is pretty impressive. It doesn’t translate on TV. When you see them out there practicing, it’s amazing how fast things happen. It’s definitely something that I appreciated today.”

NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Jamie McMurray got a taste of life in the National Football League on Tuesday as the driver of the No. 1 McDonald’s/Cessna Chevrolet SS Chevrolet participated in offseason training activities with the Jacksonville Jaguars.

McMurray and Daytona International Speedway President Joie Chitwood III were at the Jaguars training facility promoting the upcoming Coke Zero 400 Powered By Coca-Cola on Saturday, July 5.

McMurray and Chitwood were worked through drills during the first hour of practice at the fields adjacent to EverBank Field.

“Dale Jr. actually sent me a text last week at a test and asked me about doing fantasy football,” McMurray said. “I’ve never done it before. This year is going to be my first time. It’s nice to get down here and meet these guys and see everything they go through.”

“It’s all about the athletes,” Chitwood said. “When you can put those together, it’s a great opportunity.”

Among the activities the duo performed were returning punts, catching passes alongside quarterbacks Blake Bortles and Stephen Morris and pushing the blocking sled. The Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates driver wore a black No. 1 jersey while Chitwood wore No. 59 signifying the first year of operation of Daytona International Speedway.

Joie Chitwood and Gus Bradley

Following practice, McMurray and Chitwood spoke to the team. Chitwood presented a Jaguars-themed driver’s helmet autographed by all NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers and McMurray gave a crew shirt to the organization.

The grueling and hot practice was an eye opener for both McMurray and Chitwood.

“Water boy would probably be the best spot,” McMurray joked about what position he could play in the NFL. “It’s crazy how big all the guys are and then to see how small some of them are at the same time and they go up against each other fighting for the same piece of property.”

Jamie McMurrary and Joie Chitwood

“Speed in racing is a big deal,” Chitwood said. “When you go out there and see these athletes at speed is pretty impressive. It doesn’t translate on TV. When you see them out there practicing, it’s amazing how fast things happen. It’s definitely something that I appreciated today.”

McMurray, who captured the 2010 Daytona 500 and won the Coke Zero 400 in 2007, will return to the “World Center of Racing” in a few weeks for the Independence Day holiday classic with hopes of adding another Daytona win to his resume and a spot in the Chase.

“When I look at Daytona, that’s kind of a wild card race that I think a lot of guys have an opportunity to win,” McMurray said. “I’ve won both races at Daytona in the past. I look forward to coming down here every time we race here but this year more than anything because guys are trying to get that one win to get into the Chase. Daytona is going to be a big event.”

Jamie McMurray and Joie Chitwood 

The stars of NASCAR return to Daytona International Speedway on July 3-5. Tickets to the Coke Zero 400 Powered By Coca-Cola NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race and the Subway Firecracker 250 Powered By Coca-Cola NASCAR Nationwide Series race are available by calling 1-800-PITSHOP or online at www.daytonainternationalspeedway.com.

You can also catch the Coke Zero 400 Powered By Coca-Cola live from Daytona International Speedway on Saturday, July 5 at 6:30 p.m. ET on TNT. The race will also be broadcast on MRN Radio and SiriusXM.

Fans can follow NASCAR and stay up to speed on the latest news by using hashtag #NASCAR and #COKEZERO400. Fans can also stay connected with Daytona International Speedway on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest for the latest news all season long. Fans can follow the latest on DAYTONA Rising, the $400 million frontstretch renovation at the “World Center of Racing” by using #DAYTONARising on Twitter or visiting www.daytonarising.com.

Jun 10 | Lee Brice to Perform Pre-Race Concert for the 56th Annual Coke Zero 400 Powered By Coca-Cola

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“We’re excited to welcome Lee Brice for the Coke Zero 400 Weekend Powered By Coca-Cola and have him perform in front of the thousands of race fans in attendance,” Daytona International Speedway President Joie Chitwood III said.

Lee Bice

Country music singer and songwriter, Lee Brice, whose list of hits include “A Woman Like You,” “Parking Lot Party,” CMA and ACM Song of the Year “I Drive Your Truck,” and “I Don’t Dance,” will perform an hour-long pre-race concert prior to the 56th annual Coke Zero 400 Powered By Coca-Cola NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race on Saturday, July 5 at Daytona International Speedway.

Through a special VIP Ticket Package, race fans can get unprecedented access to the 60-minute pre-race concert that will be staged on pit road in the tri-oval area of the “World Center of Racing.” With packages starting at $115, the VIP Ticket Package includes:

• A reserved grandstand ticket for the Coke Zero 400 Powered By Coca-Cola
• Pre-Race/Sprint FANZONE access
• Admission to the VIP viewing area in front of the stage for the pre-race concert by Brice.

VIP Ticket Packages can be purchased online at www.daytonainternationalspeedway.com.

“We’re excited to welcome Lee Brice for the Coke Zero 400 Weekend Powered By Coca-Cola and have him perform in front of the thousands of race fans in attendance,” Daytona International Speedway President Joie Chitwood III said. “As we celebrate the Independence Day holiday weekend, Lee’s energetic performance will prepare race fans for a thrilling night of NASCAR racing on the high banks.”

Brice , an “evocative, rough-edged singer with a penchant for songs that celebrate frailty" (NY Times), released his debut album Love Like Crazy in 2009 and its title track was Billboard’s Top Country Song of 2010. His second album, Hard 2 Love, was released in 2012 and has produced hit singles such as “A Woman Like You,” “Hard to Love” and “I Drive Your Truck,” which garnered both CMA and Academy of Country Music honors in the coveted Song of the Year category. Earlier this year Brice released “I Don’t Dance,” which is the title track for his third album set to release on September 9.

Brice is also an accomplished songwriter have written for stars such as Garth Brooks, Tim McGraw, the Eli Young Band, Adam Gregory and Jason Aldean.

The stars of NASCAR return to Daytona International Speedway on July 3-5. Tickets to the Coke Zero 400 Powered By Coca-Cola NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race and the Subway Firecracker 250 Powered By Coca-Cola NASCAR Nationwide Series race are available by calling 1-800-PITSHOP or online at www.daytonainternationalspeedway.com.

You can also catch the Coke Zero 400 Powered By Coca-Cola live from Daytona International Speedway on Saturday, July 5 at 6:30 p.m. ET on TNT.

Fans can follow NASCAR and stay up to speed on the latest news by using hashtag #NASCAR and #COKEZERO400. Fans can also stay connected with Daytona International Speedway on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest for the latest news all season long. Fans can follow the latest on DAYTONA Rising, the $400 million frontstretch renovation at the “World Center of Racing” by using #DAYTONARising on Twitter or visiting www.daytonarising.com.

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