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(Photo: Zach Catanzareti)

NASCAR Announces Drivers Eligible for 2019 Clash

NASCAR announced Thursday (Dec. 13) the drivers eligible for the 2019 Advance Auto Parts Clash at Daytona International Speedway on Sunday, Feb. 10, 2019.

“There’s no better way to start the season,” Steve O’Donnell, NASCAR executive vice president and chief racing development officer, stated in a press release. “The close, door-to-door action you see in the Advance Auto Parts Clash is a precursor to the intense competition you’ll see in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series throughout 2019.”

There will likely be 20 drivers participating in the 75-lap preseason exhibition race. If a driver competed full-time during the 2018 season and won a pole during the season, has either won a pole or the race in either the Clash or the Daytona 500, or made the 2018 playoffs, he was eligible to compete.

Drivers eligible from winning a Busch Pole Award in 2018 are Ryan Blaney, Alex Bowman, Kurt Busch (now in the Chip Ganassi Racing No. 1), Kyle Busch, Chase Elliott, Denny Hamlin, Kevin Harvick, Erik Jones, Kyle Larson, Joey Logano, Paul Menard, Daniel Suarez (likely to be in the Stewart-Haas Racing No. 41) and Martin Truex Jr (now in the Joe Gibbs Racing No. 19).

Drivers eligible to make the race as former Daytona 500 champions are Jamie McMurray, competing one final time for CGR (and possibly the Daytona 500) before becoming an analyst for Fox Sports, and Ryan Newman, now in the Roush Fenway Racing No. 6.

Drivers eligible for the race as former Daytona 500 pole winners are Austin Dillon and Jimmie Johnson, in his first race in Ally Financial colors.

Finally, drivers eligible for the race because they made the 2018 playoffs are Aric Almirola, Clint Bowyer and Brad Keselowski.

The race will be the first race action for the Ford Mustang in Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series competition.

The Clash will follow Daytona 500 Pole Qualifying after traditionally being run on Saturday night, the night before qualifying. The 61st Daytona 500 will be Sunday, Feb. 17, 2019, at 2:30 p.m. ET on Fox.

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About Wesley Coburn

Wesley Coburn
Wesley has been with Fronstretch since October 2017. He loves well-told stories in whatever format he finds them. Aside from NASCAR, he enjoys reading, country music and OKC Thunder basketball. He has a BA in Liberal Arts/English and currently lives in eastern Oklahoma, where he works as a freelance writer/editor.

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