Countdown to Daytona

Reid Spencer, NASCAR Wire Service
The SportsXchange

Distributed by The Sports XChange

There are 59 days left before the Feb. 24, 2013 Daytona 500; hence, the number for today is:

59: The number of cars that started the inaugural Daytona 500 in 1959, won by Lee Petty in a photo finish over Johnny Beauchamp, as only those two drivers finished on the lead lap. Of the 59 cars that started the race, only 31 were running at the finish. Attrition started early, with Ken Marriott dropping out because of engine failure after one lap. It was not a lucrative day for the also-rans. Twenty-five drivers received the race minimum of $100 for their efforts.