DAYTONA 500 Halted After 20 Laps, Completion Postponed Until Monday at 4 p.m.

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DAYTONA BEACH, FLORIDA – FEBRUARY 16: Ricky Stenhouse Jr., driver of the #47 Kroger Chevrolet, leads the field to the green flag, waved by former NASCAR driver, Dale Earnhardt, Jr. to start the NASCAR Cup Series 62nd Annual Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 16, 2020, in Daytona Beach, Florida. Photo by Brian Lawdermilk/Getty Images

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Feb. 16, 2020) – The completion of the 62nd annual DAYTONA 500 has been postponed until Monday at 4 p.m., due to rain Sunday at Daytona International Speedway.

The season-opening race for the NASCAR Cup Series season will be televised by FOX. The race was halted Sunday night after 20 of the scheduled 200 laps were run on the 2.5-mile tri-oval, with polesitter Ricky Stenhouse Jr. leading the event in the No. 47 Kroger Chevrolet.

Speedway parking lots open at 11 a.m. Monday. Gates and the UNOH Fanzone open at 1 p.m. with hospitality areas opening at 2.

DAYTONA 500 tickets, hospitality passes, and parking passes will be honored in all areas.

NASCAR Hot Topics Daytona

NASCAR Hot Topics Daytona on Fan4Racing Blog and Radio

Editor’s Note: Fan4Racing writer Andy Laskey is the co-host for NASCAR Hot Topics Sound Off on Fan4Racing Radio every Monday and Thursday night at 10 pm ET. He’ll now offer a weekly blog of NASCAR Hot Topics to elaborate on subjects that – due to time constraints – we miss or short-change on the radio show. Please share your perspective of these hot topics in the comments section below.

Hot Topics 1 – Daniel Suarez Fails to Make Daytona 500

DAYTONA BEACH, FLORIDA – FEBRUARY 09: Daniel Suarez, driver of the #96 Toyota Certified Used Vehicles Toyota, stands on the grid during qualifying for the NASCAR Cup Series 62nd Annual Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 09, 2020, in Daytona Beach, Florida. Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images

Arguably one of the biggest disappointments to start the 2020 NASCAR season has to be Daniel Saurez missing the season-opening Daytona 500. The driver of the Gaunt Brothers Racing No. 96 Toyota was involved in a crash in the Duel 1 race that sent him to an early exit from the race and subsequent DNQ from the 500.

Daytona 500 Run Eludes a Frustrated Daniel Suarez

This is incredibly disappointing for a team trying to gain traction and establish themselves in the NASCAR Cup Series. The deal between Saurez and Gaunt Brothers Racing came together fairly late in the off-season, which put the team in a position of hiring personnel and building cars barely in time for Daytona Speedweeks. Making the Daytona 500 would have helped this up and coming team in a major way, especially in terms of financial benefits by starting the event, with a good performance and showing the potential to win.

What ‘could have been’ was the chance to gain exposure and sponsorship for the team. Missing the biggest race of the season automatically puts this team in a deficit and it will be interesting to see how they can overcome this set-back in the coming weeks.

Hot Topics 2 – No Sophomore Slump for Gragson

DAYTONA BEACH, FLORIDA – FEBRUARY 15: Noah Gragson, driver of the #9 Bass Pro Shops/BRCC Chevrolet, celebrates with the checkered flag after winning the NASCAR Xfinity Series NASCAR Racing Experience 300 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2020, in Daytona Beach, Florida. Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images

A feel-good story to start the 2020 NASCAR Xfinity Series season has to be Daytona winner Noah Gragson. Entering his sophomore season in the Xfinity Series for JR Motorsports, Gragson finds himself in a situation of opportunity to step up and establish himself as a title favorite and help secure his long term future in the sport.

Noah Gragson gets First NASCAR Xfinity Win

There’s no better way to do that than start the season off by winning the biggest race of the year. Granted, winning a superspeedway race doesn’t guarantee success for the whole season but it certainly gives this team a lot of confidence moving forward. To start the weekend, Gragson exhibited a lot of confidence and optimism for the 2020 season, as do all teams this time of year. But you just get the feeling that this has the potential to be a big year for Gragson and certainly his win at Daytona helps establish himself as one of the favorites.

With last year’s Big Three drivers in Cole Custer, Christopher Bell, and Tyler Reddick moving to the Cup Series, it remains to be seen exactly who will fill that void, however, this weekend Noah Gragson certainly made his case that he’ll be a season-long contender.  

Jeb Burton Ends Strong Xfinity Showing in Defeat at Daytona

Jeb Burton takes his JR Motorsports No. 8 to the garage after a strong run ends in an accident at Daytona
DAYTONA BEACH, FLORIDA – FEBRUARY 15: Jeb Burton, driver of the #8 LS Tractor Chevrolet, prepares to pit during the NASCAR Xfinity Series NASCAR Racing Experience 300 at Daytona International Speedway on February 15, 2020, in Daytona Beach, Florida. Photo by Brian Lawdermilk/Getty Images

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Making the first of a handful of starts for the JR Motorsports team Jeb Burton won the first stage of Saturday’s NASCAR Racing Experience 300 Xfinity Series opener at Daytona International Speedway and led a race-best 26 laps only to get tangled in a late-race accident that derailed his shot a career-first victory.

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