Daytona 500

Information about Daytona 500

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The qualifying procedure is unique for the Daytona 500. Some teams must race their way into the Daytona 500 field. The first row is set by a timed round of qualifying, held one week before the race (prior to 2003, this was two rounds; prior to 2001, it was three). The remainder of the field is set by two separate qualifying races (these were 100 miles (160 km) from 1959 to 1967; 125 miles (201 km) from 1969 to 2004; and 150 miles (240 km) with two lap overtime, if necessary, beginning in 2005 (these races were not held in 1968 due to rain). The top two drivers from the qualifying races who were not in the top 35 in owner points were given spots on the field, and the rest of the field was set by the finishing order of the duels, with guaranteed spots to those in the top 35. The remaining spots, 40 to 43, were filled by top qualifying times of those not already in the field from the qualifying race. If there was a previous NASCAR champion without a spot, he would get one of those four spots, otherwise, the fourth fastest car was added to the field.