Q:

How is the Daytona starting order determined?

A:

Quick Answer

The Daytona starting order for the Sprint Cup Series is determined via two rounds of qualifying. The 12 cars with the fastest laps in the first round advance to the second round to determine the pole.

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Full Answer

Race cars take one timed lap in each round of qualifying. Each car is released in a predetermined timed interval, with NASCAR deciding whether more than one vehicle qualifies at the same time.

First-round order is determined by a random draw, and final-round order is determined by first-round speed. Positions 13 and beyond are set based on first-round qualifying speed, and positions 1 through 12 are determined by the fastest laps in the second round.

There is a 10-minute break between qualifying rounds, during which cars advancing to the final round are allowed to adjust tape and utilize a cool-down unit.

This format was instituted in March 2015 after drivers criticized the accident-prone group qualifying format used at the Daytona 500.

The Xfinity Series and the Camping World Trucks fields are divided into four groups of 12 vehicles for the first round and get 2 1/2 minutes to qualify. The top 24 advance to the second round, and the final 12 race for the pole. This format was instituted shortly after the Daytona 500 in February.

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