NASCAR: Daytona 500 suddenly has a ‘good problem to have’

The concerns over the Daytona 500 possibly not having a full field to start the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series season are no more.

Throughout the offseason, there has been speculation that the field will not be full (40 cars) for the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series season-opening Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway.

But two recent confirmations have changed that.

A Daytona 500 without at least 40 cars would have not only been the first Daytona 500 without at least 40 cars, but it would have been the first race at the Daytona International Speedway oval without at least 40 cars since the Firecracker 400 had just 37 back in July 1968.

A total of 106 races, including 53 of 63 Daytona 500s, have been contested since then.

Entering last week, there were 39 confirmed entries for this 200-lap race around the four-turn, 2.5-mile (4.023-kilometer) high-banked oval in Daytona Beach, Florida, including the 36 chartered entries and three non-chartered entries.

Despite initially being expected to run only the #66 Ford for Timmy Hill, MBM Motorsports are now set to run the #13 Ford for J.J. Yeley as well, bringing the entry total to 40.

And after several years of rumors, The Money Team Racing are finally slated to make their Cup Series debut. They are set to run the #50 Chevrolet for Kaz Grala.

That brings the entry total to 41, and there still might be another one from NY Racing Team for Greg Biffle to bring it to 42.

So all of a sudden, NASCAR has gone from being at risk of having a Daytona 500 without at least 40 cars to being in a position where one, and possibly two, cars won’t end up even getting into the field following the single-car qualifying session and the Bluegreen Vacations Duels.

It’s certainly an exciting prospect, especially given all the offseason doubt, but it sure won’t be for two teams after the Bluegreen Vacations Duels.

Don’t miss the Bluegreen Vacations Duels on Thursday, February 17 (7:00 p.m. ET, Fox Sports 1) and the 64th annual Daytona 500 itself on Sunday, February 20 (2:30 p.m. ET, Fox). Don’t miss this chance to start your free trial of FuboTV!