Last season NASCAR welcomed back the fans and in some cases overwhelmingly so.  More than once or twice, track officials had to expand the lot for RV’s and campers to accommodate the crowd.

While the Busch Light Clash in Los Angeles marks the beginning of the season; the official beginning of the 2022 NASCAR racing season begins at Daytona which will feature all three racing series and the most unusual qualifying format in racing.

With over a month until the season begins, track officials at Daytona International Speedway has announced that all reserved tickets have been sold for the Daytona 500.

The 2020 season marked the fifth year in a row that the track hosted a sell out crowd for the 500.  Last year, the fans returned but in smaller numbers due to Covid restrictions.

Not only does the 2022 racing season mark a return to full capacity, NASCAR will debut the Next Gen car.

Track president at Daytona International Speedway Frank Kelleher spoke on the sell out saying, “the fans have definitely spoken.  We’re going to have a packed house for the 64th annual Daytona 500, but we are happy to showcase a multitude of other opportunities for fans to be a part of The Great American Race, in addition to all of the other racing action that makes up Speedweeks presented by AdventHealth.”

Tickets for the 500 may have sold out, but Kelleher notes that there are still plenty of opportunities to participate in events at Daytona. 

A package is available for $145 that allows a fan to see Luke Combs perform in concert and access to the UNOH Fanzone where fans can watch see into the garage; as well as, attend special VIP appearances.

Suite seating is still available; as are hospitality options, and tickets to the Xfinity and Camping World Truck Series races.

While there is still much to see during Speedweeks at Daytona, one things fans will not get the chance to see is NASCAR Hall of Fame driver Dale Earnhardt Jr.

Junior participated in the Next Gen car testing earlier this week but has eliminated any possibility of making a full time return to racing; especially in the Cup Series.  While Junior admits that getting some seat time in the new Next Gen car will help him do a better job in the broadcast booth; he is no longer a young man who no longer takes chances.  Junior said, “you know, I think that it’s a long story, but I’m old, 47 years old, and take a guy like William Byron and he’s young, he’s a risk taker, and I’m done taking risks. You know, I’ve got two little girls that I love being around and I put my wife through a lot to race, you know, half of my career that she was with me. She put everything in her role on pause for eight or 10 years while we did all that, and I just don’t know that at 47 years old I would be willing to take the necessary risks out on the race track that a young guy like William Byron would be willing to do.”

Dale Jr fans will have to wait until the Xfinity Series race in April race at Martinsville to see him behind the wheel for his once a year race.

He does admit that he would not object to getting behind the wheel of the Next Gen car for another testing session.

A big fan of the Washington Football Team, Dale Jr compared returning to the Cup Series like a retired NFL player saying, “this is, the Cup Series is elite. You don’t just show up and think you’re just going to go out there and compete. It’d be like, you know, an old retired football player just showing up for an NFL game and thinking he’s gonna go out there and compete with those guys. You’d get destroyed. I remember when (Jamie) McMurray came back and ran a couple years ago for Spire, he got out and he told me, he said, ‘man, I don’t remember it being that hard.’ It’s tough. Not an easy thing.”