Speedweeks and the festivities surrounding the Daytona 500 have kicked off the NASCAR racing season for over 60 years. This year NASCAR held pole qualifying and the return of The Clash on the same day.
Next season, The Clash will see some big changes; not only in the day it is run; but also the format.
Next year Speedweeks will begin with a running of The Clash on February 9 under the lights. And instead of running the high banks of the two and a half mile track, the drivers will run the road course like the IMSA series and the Rolex 24 hours at Daytona which will run the weekend before.
The news came just as Daytona International Speedway is preparing for the annual motorcycle races of the Daytona Supercross.
Daytona president Chip Wile spoke on the changes saying, “we continue to look for opportunities to differentiate the Busch Clash from the Daytona 500 and obviously everything we do around Speedweeks presented by Advent Health is about building toward the 500. This is about how we can continue to push and elevate the Busch Clash to be something different. And we’ve done that with a lot of new initiatives the first weekend.”
Wile continued, “we’ve seen growth year over year with the Busch Clash and that weekend, but to see the resurgence in road-course racing and the excitement around it from the fans, we thought, why can’t we do this.”
Wile noted that NASCAR fans have been asking to see more road course racing and the sport is listening and trying to comply with the request.
NASCAR Vice President of Racing Development Ben Kennedy also spoke on Daytona and the changes to The Clash saying, “the famed road course at Daytona has a long and storied history with sports cars and motorcycles and now we can write a new chapter on it with stock cars. Fans coming to the track will get to see six consecutive days of exciting NASCAR action, with no days being the same.”
The six day plan for Daytona Speedweeks in 2021 is
Feb 9 – The Clash
Feb 10 – Daytona 500 Pole qualifying
Feb 11 – The Bluegreen Vacations Duel races under the lights
Feb 12 – the Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series
Feb 13 – the Xfinity Series and ARCA Menards Series races
Feb 14 – the Daytona 500