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1801 W. International Speedway Blvd.
Daytona Beach, FL 32114

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TAILGATING INFORMATION:

Tailgating at the Daytona 500 is is one of the all time great tailgating mecca's. There are huge parties with fanatic race fans and excellent tailgating. Bring your lawn chairs and appetite for a great time and do not forget about Daytona Beach. Although it is February the weather may work to your favor for hitting some sand.

Click MAP IT at the top of the page to get directions.

CAMPING, PARKING and CARRYING ON:

Get a leg up and go to the Daytona International Speedway web site and down load the fan guide. It has tons of information about the grounds, regulations, parking and tailgating. It is also helpful to see where you are parking in relation to you seats. The Daytona International Speedway grounds is fairly large and if you are not familiar you could end up walking a fair distance from where you are tailgating to your seats.

You will find private parking across from the front stretch on the side streets off of International Speedway Blvd. You can't really tailgate in some of these areas but it is convenient to leave from them.

There is RV camping available on the grounds including inside the track around Lake Lloyde. Tent camping is also available in and around the speedway. This is the best for tailgating as you really never go anywhere. You can see the race, eat some food, have a cocktail and then eventually go to bed, right there.

Daytona Beach International Airport offers premium race parking for race fans looking for convenient parking close to Daytona International Speedway for Speedweeks events. Not sure if you can fire up a grill and crack a cold one but you should give them a call.

TAILGATING CHECKLIST:

  • Your Tickets
  • Local Map
  • Grill
  • Cooler
  • Ice
  • Napkins
  • Serving Utensils
  • Plates/Utensils
  • Radio
  • Garbage Bags
  • Umbrella, poncho,hat
  • Something to sit on
  • Charcoal or gas
  • Lighter/Matches
  • Fire extinguisher
  • Food/Drinks

NOTE: Tailgate safely as there are huge crowds. Use you head and act as you would if you were in your own hometown.

FLORIDA FLAVOR:

Typical Floridian affair would be to boil up some fresh crabs or steam some clams but traditional foods are always welcome. Burgers, sausage and wings are always a hit. Key lime pie is always well received and remember being in a southern state that bbq rules supreme. Ribs, pulled pork and bbq chicken with a tangy tomato based sauce is a good idea.

TRACK DETAILS:

Seats: 168,000
Track Length: 2.5 Mile
Track Shape : Tri-Oval
Banking: 31 Degree Turns 3 Degree Straights
Length of Frontstretch: 3,800 Feet
Length of Backstretch: 3,000 Feet
Length of frontstretch (including dogleg): 2,332 feet
Infield: 180 Acres

 

Daytona International Speedway is a superspeedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. It is a 2.5 mile (4 km) tri-oval race track facility with a seating capacity of 168,000 spectators.

It hosts races of motor vehicles of various kinds, including go-karts, dirt bikes, motorcycles, sports cars, modified pickup trucks, and stock cars. The facility also includes a 3.56 mile (5.7 km) road course and a 180-acre infield, including the 29 acre Lake Lloyd.

NASCAR BEGINS AT DAYTONA

NASCAR was founded by William France Sr. at Daytona Beach, Florida in 1947. The original premiere event in the series was held at the Daytona Beach Road Course. France began planning a new track for the premiere event in his fledgling series in 1953. On August 16, 1954 he signed a contract with city officials to create this new track that would become famous as the Daytona International Speedway. Ground was broken on November 25, 1957 The soil underneath the banked corners was dug from the infield of the track, and the large hole in the infield was filled with water and is now known as Lake Lloyd. The speedway opened on February 22, 1959 to a crowd of 41,000 people.

DAYTONA 500

The NASCAR Championship's most important race, the Daytona 500, is held annually at Daytona International Speedway. It is a 200-lap, 500 mile (805 km) stock car race. The list of Daytona 500 winners is very long dating back to the inaugural race in 1959, and includes "The King" Richard Petty, and Dale Earnhardt.

MORE DAYTONA RACES

NASCAR, the premier stock car organization in the United States, holds some of its most important races on this track. These include competitions in its Craftsman Truck Series (where pickup trucks are raced), Busch Series (the stock car junior league), and Nextel Cup series. The Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona is also held at Daytona.

The racing season begins at Daytona starting with the testing sessions. The year's racing begins with the 24 Hours of Daytona race in the Grand American Sports Car series. Then the racing begins for the Nextel Cup with the Budweiser Shootout and the Gatorade Duel. The Craftsman Truck Series begins with the GM Flex Fuel 250. The Busch Series begins with the Hershey's Kissables 300, and then it is back to the Nextel Cup in "The Great American Race," the Daytona 500. The Nextel Cup also features the Pepsi 400 in July at Daytona.

DAYTONA INTERNATIONAL SPEEDWAY UNDER THE LIGHTS

Lights were installed in 1998 so that the Pepsi 400 could be held at night. However, the race was delayed until October that year due to thick smoke from wildfires that summer. The Pepsi 400 has been held under lights ever since.

It also contains an attraction called Daytona USA The winning car from the Daytona 500 is placed in front of the attraction building each year. Wikipedia.org

TRIVIA

January 26, 1947: Red Byron captures the inaugural NCSCC event, billed as the "Battle of the Champions," on the Beach-Road course at Daytona.

February 5, 1950: Harold Kite drives a Lincoln to victory in the 200-mile NASCAR Grand National race at the Daytona Beach-Road course in his first start. Kite finishes 53 seconds ahead of runner-up Red Byron in the caution-free event.

February 11, 1951: Marshall Teague wheels his Hudson Hornet to victory in the season-opening NASCAR Grand National race on Daytona's Beach-Road course. Bill France is successful in luring suspended AAA driver Bill Holland into the NASCAR fold. Holland drives a Nash Ambassador, but encounters early mechanical trouble and finishes 47th in the 54-car field.

February 15, 1953: Fonty Flock runs out of fuel on the final lap as Bill Blair drives to victory in the NASCAR Grand National event on the Beach-Road course in Daytona. It is the first NASCAR Grand National race to be determined by a last-lap pass.

February 20, 1954: A starting field of 136 cars, the largest ever in a NASCAR event, take the green flag in the 100-mile Modified-Sportsman race at Daytona. Cotton Owens wins the race.

February 21, 1954: Tim Flock finishes first but is disqualified from his apparent win at Daytona, elevating Lee Petty to the official winner. Flock quits NASCAR in disgust. Flock's car had been equipped with a two-way radio, the first such use in NASCAR Grand National competition.

February 27, 1955: Tim Flock is declared the winner of the 160-mile Daytona Beach race when Fireball Roberts' Buick is disqualified on a technicality. Flock wins for team owner Carl Kiekhaefer, who makes his maiden voyage in NASCAR a successful one.

February 26, 1956: Tim Flock outruns and outlasts a huge 76-car field to score his second straight win in the Daytona Beach NASCAR Grand National event. African-American driver Charlie Scott posts a 19-th place finish.

February 17, 1957: Cotton Owens drives the Ray Nichels Pontiac to victory in the Daytona Beach NASCAR Grand National event, recording the first NASCAR win for the Pontiac nameplate.

February 23, 1958: Paul Goldsmith drives Smokey Yunick's Pontiac to victory in the 160-mile NASCAR Grand National race on Daytona's Beach-Road course. The event is the final NASCAR race staged on the picturesque 4.1-mile course on the shore.

February 1, 1959: Practice sessions begin on the new Daytona International Speedway in preparation for the inaugural Daytona 500. Shakedown runs are conducted despite the fact that the guardrail isn't completed.

February 22, 1959: Johnny Beauchamp is flagged the winner of the first Daytona 500 in a photo finish with Lee Petty. Beauchamp and Petty cross the finish line abreast after 500 miles of green flag racing. Most observers feel that Petty reached the finish line first. Bill France announces the results are unofficial and solicits all still photos and film so a decisive winner can be determined.

February 25, 1959: Lee Petty is officially declared the winner of the Daytona 500-mile race 61 hours after the checkered flag fell on the historic event. NASCAR president Bill France says photographs and film evidence "substantiated" that Petty won the hard-fought race.

January 31, 1960: The CBS television network sends a skeleton production crew to Daytona International Speedway to televise the pole position and compact car races during the opening of Speedweeks. Bud Palmer is the anchorman for the first live telecast of NASCAR stock cars.

February 12, 1960: Herman Beam becomes the first driver to be black-flagged in a NASCAR even at Daytona International Speedway. Race officials notice that Beam forgot to put on his helmet before the Twin 100-mile qualifying race. NASCAR officials park Beam for the remainder of the race.

February 14, 1960: Junior Johnson passes a spinning Bobby Johns with nine laps remaining and hustles to victory in the second annual Daytona 500. Driving a 1959 Chevrolet Impala, Johnson beats a record 68-car field and wins $19,600.

February 24, 1961: Fireball Roberts and Joe Weatherly share victory lane in Daytona's crash-marred Twin 100-mile qualifying races. Lee Petty is badly injured when he sails over the guardrail in the second event. Richard Petty sprains his ankle after soaring over the rail in the opening 100-miler.

February 26, 1961: Marvin Panch takes the lead 13 laps from the finish and wins the third annual Daytona 500. Panch cruises into first place when teammate Fireball Roberts blows his engine while holding a commanding lead.

February 18, 1962: Fireball Roberts leads 144 of the 200 laps in his overwhelming triumph in the fourth annual Daytona 500. Roberts caps off a perfect Speedweeks, winning the American Challenge invitational event for winners of 1961 events, the pole position for the 500, the Twin 100-mile qualifier, and the Daytona 500. Richard Petty, who finishes second protests Roberts' win, claiming the Yunikcs team used more than six pit crewmen during the race. Roberts' win is upheld three days later.

February 22, 1963: Johnny Rutherford takes the lead with five laps remaining and wins the second Twin 100-mile qualifying race at Daytona. Rutherford becomes only the sixth driver to win in his first career NASCAR Grand National start.

February 24, 1963: DeWayne "Tiny" Lund, filling in for the injured Marvin Panch, drives the Wood Brothers Ford to victory in the Daytona 500. Lund leads a 1-2-3-4-5 sweep for the Ford nameplate. The lead changes hands five times in the final 17 laps.

February 21, 1964: Junior Johnson and Bobby Isaac win the Twin 100-mile Daytona qualifying races to kick off Speedweeks. Johnson's win is his first start in a Ray Fox Dodge. Isaac's victory in a three-abreast photo finish is his first NASCAR Grand National win.

February 23, 1964: Driving a potent Plymouth with the new Hemi engine, Richard Petty leads 184 of the 200 laps to win the Daytona 500 going away. Plymouths run 1-2-3 at the finish line. The triumph is Petty's first on a superspeedway.

January 5, 1965: Billy Wade is killed during a tire test at Daytona. Wade had replaced the late Joe Weatherly on the Bud Moore Mercury team and had become the first driver to win four NASCAR Grand National events in a row.

February 14, 1965: Fred Lorenzen wins the rain-shortened Daytona 500, finishing a lap ahead of runner-up Darel Dieringer. Ford's and Mercury's take the top 13 positions as the factory Chrysler team continues its boycott.

February 27, 1966: Richard Petty overcomes a two-lap deficit and wins the Daytona 500 in a runaway. Petty is a full lap in front of runner-up Cale Yarborough when a thunderstorm halts the race after 198 of the scheduled 200 laps.

February 24, 1967: Fred Lorenzen scores his 26th career victory in the 100-mile qualifying race at Daytona. Lorenzen drives the 100 miles without making a pit stop. LeeRoy Yarbrough wins the other Twin 100-miler.

February 26, 1967: USAC star Mario Andretti leads the final 33 laps and wins the Daytona 500. It is Andretti's first NASCAR Grand National win.

February 25, 1968: Cale Yarborough wins the Daytona 500 by less than a second over LeeRoy Yarbrough. Gordon Johncock's Smokey Yunick-prepared Chevrolet is not permitted to compete when NASCAR officials find a number of rules violations during inspection.

February 23, 1969: LeeRoy Yarbrough passes Charlie Glotzbach on the final lap to win the Daytona 500. Yarbrough wins in his back-up car.

February 19, 1970: Cale Yarborough and Charlie Glotzbach win the Twin 125-mile qualifiers at Daytona. Rookie Talmadge Prince is fatally injured in a 19th-lap crash in the second qualifier.

February 22, 1970: Pete Hamilton, recently signed to drive a Petty Enterprises Plymouth, posts an upset victory in the Daytona 500. Hamilton passes Ford's David Pearson with nine laps to go and wins by three car lengths.

February 14, 1971: Richard Petty bags his third Daytona 500 win ahead of Buddy Baker, giving Petty Enterprises a 1-2 finish in NASCAR's most celebrated event. Dick Brooks finishes seventh in a winged Dodge Daytona, the final appearance of the exotic aerodynamic wonder in a NASCAR event.

February 20, 1972: A.J. Foyt blisters the field to win the Daytona 500 by nearly 5 miles. Foyt leads the final 300 miles in the lackluster event. Third place driver Jim Vandiver finishes six laps off the pace.

February 18, 1973: Richard Petty outlasts a speedy Buddy Baker to post his fourth win in the Daytona 500. Pole-sitter Baker leads most of the way but is foiled by an engine failure while running second with six laps to go.

February 17, 1974: Richard Petty rallies from a flat tire, takes the lead with 11 laps remaining, and drives to victory in the 450-mile Daytona 500. Speedway officials decide to drop the first 20 laps from the race and count the first lap as lap 21 to maintain the "500" in the name of NASCAR's most prestigious event.

February 16, 1975: Benny Parsons takes the lead three laps from the finish and wins the Daytona 500 when leader David Pearson spins in the backstretch. Parsons comes from the 32nd starting position to claim the upset win and the biggest victory of his career.

February 8, 1976: NASCAR disallows the speeds of the three fastest qualifiers for the Daytona 500, leaving unheralded Ramo Stott on the pole. A.J. Foyt, Darrell Waltrip and Dave Marcis have to requalify.

February 15, 1976: David Pearson creeps across the finish line at 20 mph to beat Richard Petty in a stunning finish to the Daytona 500. Pearson and Petty swap the lead four times on the final lap and tangle off the fourth turn. Pearson gets his Mercury straightened out and crosses the finish line first.

February 20, 1977: Cale Yarborough pulls away from Benny Parsons in the final laps to win in his second Daytona 500.

February 19, 1978: Bobby Allison ends his 67-race winless skid with a dramatic victory in the Daytona 500. Allison pushes his Bud Moore Ford around Buddy Baker with 11 laps remaining and leads the rest of the way.

February 18, 1979: Richard Petty hustles past the crashed cars of Cale Yarborough and Donnie Allison to win the Daytona 500, snapping his 45-race winless drought. Yarborough and Allison crash, then fight in the infield following a last-lap incident. The Nielsen ratings for the CBS live telecast are a remarkable 10.5, with the final half hour drawing an amazing 13.5 rating.

February 17, 1980: In his 18th Daytona 500 start, Buddy Baker shakes the monkey off his back with a resounding victory. Baker's Oldsmobile averages a record 177.602 mph. Bobby Allison finishes second.

February 15, 1981: Richard Petty wins his record seventh Daytona 500. Petty's longtime crew chief Dale Inman quits two days later to accept a job with the Rod Osterlund/Dale Earnhardt team.

February 14, 1982: Bobby Allison blisters the field to win his second Daytona 500. Allison's #88 DiGard Buick finishes a half-lap ahead of runner-up Cale Yarborough.

February 20, 1983: Cale Yarborough pushes his Pontiac around Buddy Baker on the final lap to win his third Daytona 500. Yarborough was in a backup car after crashing his Chevrolet in qualifying. Cale topped the 200-mph barrier on his first qualifying lap but flipped and destroyed the car on the second lap.

February 19, 1984: Cale Yarborough wins his fourth Daytona 500. Yarborough passes Darrell Waltrip on the final lap and outruns Dale Earnhardt off the final turn to preserve the victory.

February 17, 1985: Bill Elliott leads 136 of the 200 laps in dominating the Daytona 500. Elliott dominates Daytona's Speedweeks, winning the pole at more than 205 mph and nearly lapping the field in the Twin 125-mile qualifier.

July 4, 1985: Unheralded Greg Sacks stuns the favorites by winning the Pepsi Firecracker 400 at Daytona. Sacks drives an unsponsored car to a 23.5 second triumph over runner-up Bill Elliott. It is not only Sacks' first NASCAR Winston Cup Grand National victory, but also his first top-five finish.

February 16, 1986: Geoff Bodine outlasts Dale Earnhardt to win the Daytona 500. Earnhardt is poised to slingshot around Bodine for the win, but runs out of fuel with 3 laps remaining.

February 15, 1987: Geoff Bodine runs out of fuel with three laps to go, allowing Bill Elliott to score his second win in the Daytona 500. Benny Parsons finishes second in his first assignment since replacing Tim Richmond.

July 4, 1987: Bobby Allison blasts out of the middle of the pack, roars past Ken Schrader with two laps to go, and wins the Pepsi Firecracker 400 at Daytona. Allison is running 13th with five laps to go, but makes up the deficit and drives to an impressive triumph.

February 14, 1988: It is 'Allison Wonderland' in the 30th running of the Daytona 500 as Bobby and Davey Allison finish first and second in NASCAR's most prestigious event. Richard Petty survives a wild tumble just past the halfway point. NASCAR's 'tire wars' begin as ten teams use Hoosier tires at Daytona.

February 19, 1989: In his 17th Daytona 500 start, Darrell Waltrip prevails in an economy run. Waltrip runs the final 132.5 miles without a pit stop and coasts across the finish line 7.64 seconds ahead of runner-up Ken Schrader. Most of the field runs on Hoosier tires as Goodyear pulls out the race due to safety concerns with its new radial tire.

February 18, 1990: Dale Earnhardt cuts a tire on the final lap, allowing Derrike Cope to post his first NASCAR win in the Daytona 500. Cope edges Terry Labonte by two car lengths.

February 19, 1991: Ernie Irvan surges past Dale Earnhardt with six laps to go and scores an upset win in the Daytona 500. Earnhardt spins out with 2 laps remaining and takes out contenders Davey Allison and Kyle Petty. Irvan cruises on the final lap as the race ends under the caution flag.

February 16, 1992: Davey Allison dodges several wrecks and finishes a car length ahead of Morgan Shepherd to win the Daytona 500. A 14-car crash cripples or takes out nine of the 16 cars running on the lead lap.

February 14, 1993: Dale Jarrett muscles his way past Dale Earnhardt on the final lap and records a one car-length victory in the Daytona 500. Jarrett's last-lap heroics thwart Earnhardt's 15th bid for a win in NASCAR's most prestigious event.

February 11, 1994: Veteran driver Neil Bonnett loses his life in a practice crash at Daytona International Speedway in preparation for the upcoming Daytona 500. Bonnett's Chevrolet breaks loose in the fourth turn and slaps the wall nearly head-on.

February 20, 1994: Sterling Marlin holds Ernie Irvan at bay in the final laps to record his first career NASCAR Winston Cup victory in the Daytona 500. Marlin's first triumph comes in his 279th start, the longest it has ever taken a driver to post his first win.

February 19, 1995: Sterling Marlin holds off Dale Earnhardt to score his second straight victory in the Daytona 500. Earnhardt is running 14th with 11 laps remaining, but charges to second and is edged by Marlin by .61 second.

February 18, 1996: Dale Jarrett passes Dale Earnhardt with 24 laps remaining and scores his second win in the Daytona 500. Jarrett blocks Earnhardt's final-lap moves to post a .12 second victory.

February 16, 1997: Jeff Gordon drives past Bill Elliott with six laps remaining and lead a 1-2-3 sweep for the Hendrick Motorsports team in the 39th running of the Dayton 500. Gordon, Terry Labonte and Ricky Craven gang up on Elliott in the stretch drive and take the top three spots in NASCAR's most celebrated event.

February 15, 1998: With the Thunderbird no longer available, Ford introduces the Taurus for competition in NASCAR's 50th Anniversary season. Dale Earnhardt ends two decades of frustration at the Daytona 500. Earnhardt, making his 20th start in NASCAR's annual 'Super Bowl', leads the final 61 laps and edges Bobby Labonte at the finish. It is the 71st win of Earnhardt's career and it snaps a victory drought that dates back to 1996.

February 14, 1999: Jeff Gordon assumes command with 11 laps remaining and staves off a charge by Dale Earnhardt to win his second Daytona 500. Gordon makes the decisive pass around Rusty Wallace on the apron of the speedway.

February 20, 2000: Dale Jarrett exercises patience to grab his third victory in the Daytona 500. After following Johnny Benson Jr., for 50 miles, Jarrett makes the decisive pass with four laps to go to beat Jeff Burton.

February 18, 2001: Michael Waltrip nips Dale Earnhardt Jr., at the finish line to win the Daytona 500, a tragic affair in which NASCAR icon Dale Earnhardt is fatally injured in a last-lap crash. Waltrip's first NASCAR Winston Cup victory turns from a joyous occasion to despair after the loss of NASCAR's most dynamic competitor.

February 17, 2002: Ward Burton leads only the final five laps and scores an upset win in the Daytona 500. Sterling Marlin is penalized by NASCAR when he pulls a fender off his right front tire during a late red flag. NASCAR rules prohibit work from being done to a car during a red-flag situation.

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