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How the Daytona 500 field is set for the 2017 race

Chase Elliott

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The Daytona 500 is a unique event in many ways, including how the 40-car field is set for this year's race (Sunday, Feb. 26, 2 p.m. ET, FOX, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio).

There are two days that carry the most significance in how the field is set. The first is Sunday, Feb. 19 when two rounds of single-car qualifying will take place starting at 3:10 p.m. ET (FOX). The second is Thursday, Feb. 23 when the Can-Am Duel races take place, starting at 7 p.m. ET (FS1).

Here are more details:

SINGLE-CAR QUALIFYING


Programming info for single-car qualifying

When: Sunday, Feb. 19
Where: Daytona International Speedway
TV: FOX
Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio

What is the format?
This event will determine the front row (spots 1 and 2) for the Daytona 500. There will be two rounds of single-car qualifying, with the 12 fastest cars in Round 1 advancing to Round 2. There will be a 10-minute break between rounds, and cars will make their Round 2 run based on Round 1 times (slowest going first, fastest last).

The fastest time in Round 2 will be the Coors Light Pole Award winner for the Daytona 500. The second-fastest time in Round 2 will earn the other spot on the front row for the Daytona 500. The pole winner will start first in the first Can-Am Duel race on Thursday. The other front-row driver will start first in the second Can-Am Duel race.

The rest of the field will line up for Thursday's Can-Am Duels based on qualifying time, with odd-numbered finishers lining up in the first Duel, and even-numbered finishers lining up for the second Duel.

CAN-AM DUELS

Programming info for the Can-Am Duels

When: Thursday, Feb. 23
Where: Daytona International Speedway
TV: FS1
Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio

What is the format
?
The Can-Am Duels will determine spots 3-38 in the Daytona 500 grid. With 36 Charter teams entered in the race, two of these spots will be filled by the top Open car in each Duel race. The qualifiers from the first Duel will line up on the inside row in the Daytona 500 depending upon their finish in Duel 1. The qualifiers from the second Duel will line up on the outside row for the Daytona 500 depending upon their result in Duel 2.

The remaining two spots on the Daytona 500 grid will be awarded to the top Open teams from Sunday's qualifying that are still left (i.e. didn't qualify through the Duels).

In review
:
- Two spots (front row) determined by Sunday's qualifying.
- Spots 3-38 determined by results of Duels races.
- Spots 39, 40 go to the top Open cars remaining.
- That's a total of 40 cars for Sunday's race (36 Charter cars, 4 Open cars).


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