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Feb 16, 2013 - 06:54 PM
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2013 Daytona 500 (Sprint Unlimited): NASCAR Sprint Cup Starting Line-up & Race Preview
Posted by: ASkyler on Feb 16, 2013 - 07:56 AM
2013 Daytona 500 (Sprint Unlimited): NASCAR Sprint Cup Starting Line-up & Race Preview

By Mike Sulka

The 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup season kicks it up a gear tonight as the 35th annual Sprint Unlimited (formerly Budweiser Shootout) fires up with a 75 lap no points, only glory race as 19 of NASCAR's top stars take to the track. Tonight there is only one goal, and that is to win!

The annual race takes place at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida just one weekend before the Super Bowl of racing... the 2013 Daytona 500!

In 2013, drivers became eligible by finishing in the top-25 in 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup points, being a past Bud Shootout winner, Daytona 500 or Coke Zero champion.

The format tonight is a 75-lap, 187.5-mile race with three segments - 30 laps, 25 laps and 20 laps - including yellow-flag laps. Between segments there will be a 10-minute pit stop which will allow tire changes, re-fueling and normal chassis adjustments. The format was determined by fan vote with 55 Percent of the vote. The type of pitstops haven't yet been announced as fans are allowed to vote until 8PM tonight at nascar.com.

As for providing the Pole sitter, we can't yet. Or even a starting line-up.

That will be up to the fans in attendance on race day. We'll update the starting line-up as soon as possible, so kept refreshing this page.

What we do know is that the drivers in the event will be: Aric Almirola, Marcos Ambrose, Greg Biffle, Kurt Busch, Kyle Busch, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Carl Edwards, Jeff Gordon, Denny Hamlin, Kevin Harvick, Jimmie Johnson, Kasey Kahne, Matt Kenseth, Joey Logano, Mark Martin, Juan Pablo Montoya, Ken Schrader, Tony Stewart and Martin Truex Jr.

The three possible options are for the starting line-up are: Number of career wins (most to least); 2012 final NASCAR Sprint Cup driver point standings and order in which drivers won their first Coors Light Pole last season, beginning with last year’s Daytona 500.

If you are looking for trends, there are a few interesting tidbits. Since 2001 Joe Gibbs Racing has won four times (2001, 2002, 2006, 2007). Three times with Tony Stewart - starting 15th - at the wheel, and once with Denny Hamlin - starting 16th.

Hendrick Motorsports also has multiple wins - since 2001 - with victories in 2005 (Jimmie Johnson) & 2008 (Dale Earnhardt Jr.). Four-time Cup champion Jeff Gordon has won this event twice, but hasn't won since 1997 - his other victory came in 1994.

You might also keep an eye on Richard Childress Racing's Kevin Harvick who won in 2009 & 2010 to become the fourth NASCAR driver to score repeat wins in Shootout history. But was seventh in 2011, no driver has ever won three Shootouts in a row.

Last year's winner was Kyle Busch.

So enjoy tonight's first taste of NASCAR Sprint Cup race action! And if you haven't voted, get out and vote!


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2013 Sprint Unlimited: NASCAR Sprint Cup Starting Line-up
Pos. No. Driver Sponsor Make Pole Positions Pole Win
1 99 Carl Edwards Fastenal Ford 1 Pole Position / Daytona
2 55 Mark Martin Aarons Dream Machine Toyota 4 Pole Positions / Phoenix
3 5 Kasey Kahne Farmers Insurance Chevrolet 4 Pole Positions / Las Vegas
4 16 Greg Biffle 3M Ford 3 Pole Positions / Bristol
5 11 Denny Hamlin FedEx Express Toyota 3 Pole Positions / California
6 56 Martin Truex Jr. NAPA Auto Parts Toyota 1 Pole Position / Texas
7 24 Jeff Gordon Drive to End Hunger Chevrolet 2 Pole Positions / Talladega
8 43 Aric Almirola Smithfield Ford 1 Pole Position / Charlotte
9 22 Joey Logano Shell Pennzoil Ford 2 Pole Positions / Pocono
10 9 Marcos Ambrose Stanley Ford 2 Pole Positions / Michigan
11 48 Jimmie Johnson Lowes Yellow Chevrolet 4 Pole Positions / Kentucky
12 20 Matt Kenseth Dollar General Toyota 1 Pole Position / Daytona
13 18 Kyle Busch M&Ms Toyota 2 Pole Positions / New Hamp.
14 42 Juan Pablo Montoya Target Chevrolet 2 Pole Positions / Pocono
15 14 Tony Stewart Mobil 1 / Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet 1 Pole Position / Atlanta
16 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr. National Guard Chevrolet 1 Pole Position / Richmond
17 29 Kevin Harvick Budweiser Chevrolet 0 Pole Position / 8th Points
18 78 Kurt Busch Furniture Row Racing Chevrolet 0 Pole Position / 25th Points
19 32 Terry Labonte C&J Energy Services Ford 0 Pole Position / 44th Points

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