NASCAR season schedule: start your engines


FILE – Drivers restart after a weather delay during the NASCAR Daytona 500 auto race at Daytona International Speedway, Sunday, Feb. 14, 2021, in Daytona Beach, Fla.(AP Photo/John Raoux, File)

(AP) — The NASCAR season opener at Daytona International Speedway is upon us and the sold-out 2022 Daytona 500 (3:06 p.m. EST, Fox) will serve as the ultimate proving ground as the “Next Gen” car makes its debut.

Here is a look at the upcoming schedule:


Daytona 500

Site: Daytona Beach, Florida.

Schedule: Wednesday, qualifying, 8:05 p.m.; Thursday, Duel 1, 7 p.m.; Duel 2, 9 p.m.; Friday, practice, 6 p.m.; Saturday, practice, 10:30 a.m.; Sunday, race, 2:30 p.m.

Track: Daytona International Speedway

Race distance: 200 laps, 500 miles.

Last year: Michael McDowell won after starting 17th.

Last race: Kyle Larson won the season finale at Phoenix, his 10th win of the season, and claimed his first season championship.

Fast facts: Larson’s 10 wins were by far the most in the series. Martin Truex Jr. and Alex Bowman were next with four wins each. … Larson finished in the top five 20 times in 36 races. Denny Hamlin was next with 19 top-five runs. … Former Formula One champion and Indy 500 winner Jacques Villeneuve will be among those trying to qualify for the race. … Joey Logano won The Clash, a preseason exhibition on a quarter-mile oval at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.

Next race: Feb. 27, Fontana, California.



Beef. It’s What’s For Dinner. 300

Site: Daytona Beach, Florida

Schedule: Friday, practice, 4:35 p.m.; Saturday, qualifying, 11:35 a.m., and race, 5 p.m.

Track: Daytona International Speedway.

Race distance: 120 laps, 300 miles.

Last year: Austin Cindric won after starting on the pole.

Last race: Daniel Hemric won for the first time in 120 career starts to claim the series championship after starting fourth at Phoenix.

Fast facts: Hemric finished on the lead lap a series-best 31 times in 33 races in 2021. … Cindric has moved up to the Cup Series driving for Team Penske.

Next race: Feb. 26, Fontana, California.



NextEra Energy 250

Site: Daytona Beach, Florida

Schedule: Thursday, practice, 5 p.m.; Friday, qualifying, 3 p.m., and race, 7:30 p.m.

Track: Daytona International Speedway.

Race distance: 100 laps, 250 miles.

Last year: Ben Rhodes won after starting 23rd, the deepest starting spot for a race-winner all season.

Last race: Chandler Smith won the season finale at Phoenix, and third-place finisher Rhodes claimed the season championship.

Fast facts: Rhodes won the first two races last season, then didn’t win any of the 20 races that followed. … John Hunter Nemecheck won a series-best five races last season and tied Rhodes and Todd Gilliland with 16 top-10 finishes.

Next race: March 4, Las Vegas.



Last race: Max Verstappen passed seven-time series champion Lewis Hamilton on the final lap and won his first series championship.

Next race: March 20, Sakhir, Bahrain.



Last race: Colton Herta won the season finale at Long Beach, California, as Alex Palou wrapped up the series championship.

Next race: Feb. 27, St. Petersburg, Florida.



Last event: Steve Torrence won the Top Fuel championship and Bob Tasca III won the Funny Car title in the Auto Club NHRA Nationals.

Next event: Feb. 17-20, Pomona, California.



Next event: Feb. 25, Columbus, Mississippi.


All Times Eastern

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