NASCAR: 6 drivers at risk of missing the 2024 Daytona 500

Six drivers on the entry list for the 2024 NASCAR Cup Series season-opening Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway are not locked into the race.

Jimmie Johnson, Legacy Motor Club, Daytona 500, NASCAR
Jimmie Johnson, Legacy Motor Club, Daytona 500, NASCAR / Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
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The single-car qualifying session to set the front row for the 2024 NASCAR Cup Series season-opening Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway is scheduled to take place this evening, with live coverage set to be provided by Fox Sports 1 beginning at 8:15 p.m. ET.

The results of this session are also set to determine the starting lineups for Thursday night's two 60-lap Bluegreen Vacations Duels at the four-turn, 2.5-mile (4.023-kilometer) high-banked Daytona Beach, Florida oval.

But in the grand scheme of things, perhaps the most important part of tonight's session is that it locks two drivers into the field who are at risk of missing the Daytona 500.

Daytona 500: 6 drivers not locked in

The 36 charter entries are all locked into Sunday's 200-lap race. The field size is capped at 40 cars, and there are 42 cars on the entry list. As a result, there are effectively six drivers going for four spots over the next two nights, and two drivers will fail to qualify for the race.

Those six drivers are:

Kaz Grala - No. 36 Front Row Motorsports Ford
J.J. Yeley - No. 44 NY Racing Team Chevrolet
David Ragan - No. 60 RFK Racing Ford
Anthony Alfredo - No. 62 Beard Motorsports Chevrolet
B.J. McLeod - No. 78 Live Fast Motorsports Chevrolet
Jimmie Johnson - No. 84 Legacy Motor Club Toyota

The fastest two of these drivers in tonight's session lock into the field. Then the highest finisher (among this group) in Duel 1 (Fox Sports 1, 7:00 p.m. ET) and the highest finisher in Duel 2 (Fox Sports 1, 9:00 p.m. ET) also lock in.

Should a driver(s) effectively lock in both ways, any remaining open spots would go to the next fastest driver(s) from tonight's session. The drivers who officially qualify on speed are set to start on the 20th and final row on the Daytona 500 grid, while the drivers who qualify via their Duel results are set have their starting positions determined based on those Duel results.

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The 66th annual Daytona 500 is set to be broadcast live from Daytona International Speedway on Fox beginning at 2:30 p.m. ET on Sunday, February 18. Begin a free trial of FuboTV and don't miss any of the action over the next few days!

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