When is the Daytona 500 in 2021? Date, start time, TV schedule for race and qualifying

Staff Report
·5 min read

The Daytona 500 will kick off the 2021 NASCAR Cup Series season and feature a mix of new teams like Michael Jordan’s 23XI Racing along with more established units such as Hendrick Motorsports, home to defending series champion Chase Elliott.

This year’s Daytona 500, the 63rd running of The Great American Race, is scheduled for Sunday, Feb. 14, with a start time of 2:30 p.m. ET. TV coverage will be on FOX, with live streaming on FOX Sports Go and the radio call on MRN.

The Daytona 500 culminates Speedweeks, a full schedule of practice, qualifying and racing that includes action from all three NASCAR national series, as well as the ARCA Menards Series. Below is all you need to know for watching the Daytona 500, NASCAR’s crown jewel race:

When is the Daytona 500 in 2021?

  • Date: Sunday, Feb. 14

  • Start time: 2:30 p.m. ET

  • TV channel: FOX

  • Live stream: Fox Sports Go

  • Radio: MRN

The FOX broadcast will feature a new voice in the booth as former Cup Series driver Clint Bowyer joins NASCAR Hall of Famer Jeff Gordon and veteran play-by-play announcer Mike Joy. FOX is returning to a three-person booth after one year with a two-man setup following the retirement of Darrell Waltrip.

Bowyer and Gordon developed a rapport during broadcasts of the eNASCAR iRacing Pro Invitational Series last season when NASCAR paused due to the COVID-19 pandemic. FOX is looking to bring that banter over to NASCAR broadcasts as anticipation builds for the unpredictable Bowyer’s booth debut.

Larry McReynolds, America’s favorite crew chief, will continue to provide analysis for the FOX Sports booth from the network’s Charlotte studios.

Daytona 500 2021 TV schedule

The Daytona 500 culminates Daytona Speedweeks presented by Advent Health, six days of NASCAR action that starts on Tuesday, Feb. 9 with the Busch Clash at Daytona. The 43rd annual exhibition race will run on the 14-turn, 3.61-mile Daytona Road Course for the first time, and it will start under the lights at 7 p.m. ET on FS1. NASCAR drivers can qualify for the Busch Clash in a number of different ways.

Practices and qualifying sessions will return at Daytona. Last season, practices were canceled and lineups were set first by draw and then by a mathematical formula during the COVID-19 pandemic. This season, there will be practice and qualifying at select events, including the Daytona 500, as NASCAR continues to work with state, local and federal officials to ensure the safety of its competitors and spectators.

Here’s a look at the full Cup Series schedule of events for Speedweeks:

  • Tuesday, Feb. 9

Event

Start time

TV channel

Live stream

Radio

Busch Clash at Daytona

7 p.m. ET

FS1

Fox Sports Go

MRN

  • Wednesday, Feb. 10

Event

Start time

TV channel

Live stream

Radio

First practice

12:05 p.m. ET

FS1

Fox Sports Go

N/A

Qualifying

7 p.m. ET

FS1

Fox Sports Go

MRN

  • Thursday, Feb. 11

Event

Start time

TV channel

Live stream

Radio

Duels at Daytona

7 p.m. ET

FS1

Fox Sports Go

MRN

  • Saturday, Feb. 13

Event

Start time

TV channel

Live stream

Radio

Second practice

9:30 a.m. ET

FS2

Fox Sports Go

N/A

Final practice

12:05 p.m. ET

FS1

Fox Sports Go

N/A

  • Sunday, Feb. 14

Event

Start time

TV channel

Live stream

Radio

Daytona 500

2:30 p.m. ET

FOX

Fox Sports Go

MRN

Daytona 500 2021 qualifying

Setting the lineup is different for the Daytona 500 than any other NASCAR national series event. Busch Pole Qualifying, set for 7 p.m. ET Wednesday, Feb. 10, on FS1, will determine the front row for the main event. The two fastest times from single-car qualifying will line up on Row 1 on Sunday for the Daytona 500.

The rest of the lineup will mostly be determined by results of Thursday’s Bluegreen Vacations Duels, starting at 7 p.m. ET on FS1. The winner of Duel 1 will line up in Row 2 behind the polesitter, with subsequent finishers in Duel 1 filling the odd-numbered slots throughout the 40-car field.

Meanwhile, the winner of Duel 2 will line up in Row 2 behind the second-fastest car in qualifying, with subsequent Duel 2 finishers filling out the rest of the even-numbered slots. The top Open (non-chartered) cars in Duel 1 and Duel 2 will fill the next slots, with any remaining open spots being filled by the best qualifiers.

All of this will lead to a full lineup for Sunday’s Daytona 500 at 2:30 p.m. ET on FOX.

Daytona 500 2021 entry list

This Daytona 500 entry list is unofficial and subject to change:

No.

Driver

Team

00

Quin Houff

StarCom Racing

1

Kurt Busch

Chip Gannasi Racing

2

Brad Keselowski

Team Penske

3

Austin Dillon

Richard Childress Racing

4

Kevin Harvick

Stewart-Haas Racing

5

Kyle Larson

Hendrick Motorsports

6

Ryan Newman

Roush Fenway Racing

7

Corey LaJoie

Spire Motorsports

8

Tyler Reddick

Richard Childress Racing

9

Chase Elliott

Hendrick Motorsports

10

Aric Almirola

Stewart-Haas Racing

11

Denny Hamlin

Joe Gibbs Racing

12

Ryan Blaney

Team Penske

14

Chase Briscoe

Stewart-Haas Racing

15

Derrike Cope

Rick Ware Racing

16*

Kaz Grala

Kaulig Racing

17

Chris Buescher

Roush Fenway Racing

18

Kyle Busch

Joe Gibbs Racing

19

Martin Truex Jr.

Joe Gibbs Racing

20

Christopher Bell

Joe Gibbs Racing

21

Matt DiBenedetto

Wood Brothers Racing

22

Joey Logano

Team Penske

23

Bubba Wallace

23XI Racing

24

William Byron

Hendrick Motorsports

33*

Austin Cindric

Team Penske

34

Michael McDowell

Front Row Motorsports

36*

David Ragan

Front Row Motorsports

37*

Ryan Preece

JTG Daugherty Racing

38

Anthony Alfredo

Front Row Motorsports

41

Cole Custer

Stewart-Haas Racing

42

Ross Chastain

Chip Ganassi Racing

43

Erik Jones

Richard Petty Motorsports

47

Ricky Stenhouse Jr.

JTG Daugherty Racing

48

Alex Bowman

Hendrick Motorsports

49*

Chad Finchum

MBM Motorsports

51

Cody Ware

Rick Ware Racing

52

Josh Bilicki

Rick Ware Racing

53

TBD

Rick Ware Racing

62*

Noah Gragson

Beard Oil Motorsports

66*

Timmy Hill

MBM Motorsports

77

Jamie McMurray

Spire Motorsports

78

B.J. McLeod

Live Fast Motorsports

96*

Ty Dillon

Gaunt Brothers Racing

99

Daniel Suarez

Trackhouse Racing Team

* = Will likely need to race way into Daytona 500