The Daytona 500 is the greatest race of the NASCAR season. Now that the football season is over and baseball has yet to start, we can focus on racing to pass the time. This should be a great season filled with newcomers and veterans. There are several new faces, and old faces in new rides. There have also been some rule changes as we enter the 2018 NASCAR season.
Driver & Car Changes:
-Danica Patrick is out of the #10 car for Stewart-Haas racing, replaced by Aric Almirola. Bubba Wallace has replaced Aric Almirola in the #43 Richard Petty Motorsports ride.
-Dale Earnhardt Jr has retired, and the #88 Hendrick Motorsports car is now driven by Alex Bowman. Also, Chase Elliott moved into the #9 car for Hendrick, which put William Byron in the #24.
-Penske added a third car to their team. Ryan Blaney will be driving the #12 car full time in the Cup series.
– NASCAR has cut the number of crew members who can be over the wall on a pit stop from 6 to 5. This means that there will only be a 4 man crew for all tire changes, with the 5th man being the gas man.
– NASCAR has increased the time allotted to work on damaged vehicles from 5 minutes to 6.
– Teams will now be forced to use the same air gun while changing tires on pit road. Teams used to be able to develop their own guns, with some spending millions to look for an advantage.
Daytona Week Schedule:
– Thursday, Feb 15th – Can Am Duels to decided Daytona running order. Alex Bowman has already won the Pole, with Denny Hamlin joining him on the front row.
– Saturday, Feb 17th – NASCAR Xfinity Series PowerShares QQQ 300 at Daytona
– Sunday, Feb 18th – Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Daytona 500