Hall of Famer Dale Earnhardt Jr. is getting used to racing his Late Model Stock Car at Florence Motor Speedway. Having finished ninth in last year’s South Carolina 400 at the NASCAR Home Track, the 49-year-old during Saturday’s edition of the race will have his third chance at a Florence victory in 2023.
Earnhardt is included on the loaded entry list for this year’s South Carolina 400 at Florence Motor Speedway (Saturday, 4:30 p.m. ET on FloRacing). He finished sixth in the track’s Locked In 150 a couple months ago to secure his place in the 250-lap feature. Earnhardt also ran Florence’s Icebreaker in February, when he logged a 16th-place finish.
Saturday’s South Carolina 400 figures to be another action-packed show one year after Late Model Stock star Brenden “Butterbean” Queen took the checkered flag in what was his debut race with Lee Pulliam Performance. Queen is back for 2023, as is Carson Kvapil, the JR Motorsports driver whom Queen outlasted for last year’s win.
That’s all we know ahead of a long day of practice and qualifying Saturday as more than 40 Late Model Stock Car competitors look to add a Florence crown jewel to their trophy cases that evening.
Below is everything to know about the 2023 South Carolina 400 at Florence Motor Speedway, including the entry list and how to watch.
South Carolina 400 at Florence Motor Speedway: TV channel, live stream
The 2023 South Carolina 400 at Florence Motor Speedway will be shown exclusively on FloRacing, the streaming home of all NASCAR Roots properties.
That means the race will not broadcast on a traditional TV channel/network.
FloRacing’s coverage of Saturday’s action is scheduled to start at 4:30 p.m. ET. That’s when qualifying will begin for all three divisions (Street Stocks, Mini Stocks, Late Models).
Pre-race ceremonies are scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. ET, immediately followed by feature racing. Twin Late Model heat races will begin the feature action, followed by the Street Stock and Mini Stock races. The 250-lap Late Model feature will close the night.
Streaming start time
How to watch
South Carolina 400 at Florence Motor Speedway
Saturday, Nov. 18, 2023
4:30 p.m. ET
Dale Earnhardt Jr. headlines the entry list for Saturday’s South Carolina 400 at Florence Motor Speedway. But the NASCAR legend’s Hall of Fame credentials will do little to help him against a stacked field of Late Model Stock Car aces.
For example, Earnhardt will race against the driver who delivered JR Motorsports the 2020 NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Series national championship. Josh Berry, who will drive the No. 4 Ford Mustang in the NASCAR Cup Series next season for Stewart-Haas Racing, will pilot Kevin Harvick’s late model at Florence.
Last year’s SC 400 front-runners Brenden Queen and Carson Kvapil are back in the field for 2023. As are talented late model drivers William Sawalich, Kaden Honeycutt, Doug Barnes Jr., Katie Hettinger, Kade Brown, Carter Langley, Brandon Pierce, Ryan Glenski, Landon Huffman, Josh Williams and Stephen Nasse, to name a few.
The complete Late Model Stock Car entry list is below.
(As of Nov. 13)
51 Matt Cox
02 Justin Milliken
03 Brenden Queen
34 Matt Linker
13 Cody Kelley
16 Casey Kelley
95 Jacob Heafner\
21 Lanie Buice
99 Austin Somero
23 Kade Brown
95 Sam Yarbrough
94 Jamie Weatherford
07 Averitt Lucas
1 Trent Barnes
88 Doug Barnes Jr.
71 Katie Hettinger
29 Casey Wyatt
2 Gracie Trotter
18 Anthony Adams
5 Carter Langley
2 Brandon Pierce
30 Paul Owens
55 Mark Wertz
28 Ryan Glenski
75 Coy Beard
3 Dale Earnhardt Jr.
8 Carson Kvapil
62 Josh Berry
T2 Travis Truett
20 Josh Dickens
32 Zack Miracle
5 Bryant Barnhill
18 Truett Miranda
21 Landon DeVaughn
28 Landon S. Huffman
11 Josh Williams
16 Adam McCumbee
09 Riley Gentry
75 Landon Huffman
18 David Roberts
43 William Sawalich
10 Kaden Honeycutt
04 Ronnie Bassett Jr.
51 Stephen Nasse
Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s South Carolina 400 history at Florence Motor Speedway
Dale Earnhardt Jr. last year made a significant return to his roots when he competed in the South Carolina 400 at Florence Motor Speedway.
In what was the 30th edition of the race, Earnhardt drove a car sporting a throwback scheme to the Bass Pro Shops car his father Dale Earnhardt Sr. drove in the 1998 NASCAR All-Star Race.
Junior qualified 26th and methodically worked his way into contention ahead of the final 50-lap run. With 13 laps to go, Earnhardt made contact with Matt Cox down the backstretch while the two were racing for third. The contact sent Cox into the inside wall, and event officials penalized Earnhardt by sending him to the tail of the field for causing the crash.
Earnhardt marched back through the field a second time, but an incident with Landon Pembelton with fewer than five laps left saw Earnhardt penalized a second time, resulting in a ninth-place finish.
— NASCAR Roots (@NASCARRoots) November 20, 2022
The race was Earnhardt‘s first at Florence Motor Speedway since his formative years in the 1990s. The 2023 edition of the South Carolina 400 will be his second start in the prestigious race.
Earnhardt also raced in Florence’s Icebreaker in February; he finished 16th. He finished sixth in the track’s Locked In 150 a couple months ago.
Saturday at Florence Motor Speedway will mark the second full day of racing action in what makes up the Charlie Powell Memorial event.
For Street Stocks, Mini Stocks and Late Models on Saturday, there will be two practice sessions ahead of qualifying. For the Late Models, those who don’t log a top-20 time in qualifying will compete in the heat races later in the evening to try to secure their starting positions. The top six finishers of those heat races will advance to the main event.
Below is the complete race-day schedule for Saturday at Florence.
Saturday, Nov. 18
8:30 a.m. ET
Late Model trailer parking
9 a.m. ET
Late Model pit gates open
9:30 a.m. ET
Late Model tire area opens / Late Model tech line opens
10:30 a.m. ET
Support divisions parking / gates
11 a.m. ET
Support divisions tire area opens
12:30 p.m. ET
Practice Round 1 (Street Stocks 20 minutes; Mini Stocks 20 minutes; Late Models 45 minutes)
2 p.m. ET
Practice Round 2 (Street Stocks 15 minutes; Mini Stocks 15 minutes; Late Models 30 minutes)
3 p.m. ET
3:15 p.m. ET
Pre-qualifying tech: Late Models
4:30 p.m. ET
Qualifying (Street Stocks, Mini Stocks, Late Models)
6 p.m. ET
Pre-race ceremonies and features (Late Model Heat Race 1 25 laps; Late Model Heat Race 2 25 laps; Street Stocks 50 laps; Mini Stocks 50 laps; Late Models 250 laps)
Below is the race format for the South Carolina 400, via Florence Motor Speedway.
ALL TEAMS WILL QUALIFY WITH THE TOP 20 LOCKING IN FROM QUALIFYING. THE POLE POSITION IS RESERVED FOR THE 95 OF SAM YARBROUGH WITH HIS WIN IN THE LOCKED IN 150.
AFTER QUALIFYING, THE TOP 20 WILL LOCK INTO THE 250 LAP FEATURE.
ALL OTHER CARS WILL BE RELEGATED TO TWO 25 LAP HEAT RACES WITH THE TOP 6 FINISHERS ADVANCING.
THE TRACK HAS THE OPTION TO ADD 3-4 PROVISIONALS IF DESIRED, TO CAP THE STARTING FIELD TO 36 CARS.
THE FEATURE WILL BE 250 LAPS WITH A 10-MIN BREAK AT LAP 125.
Although the Myrtle Beach 400 no longer exists, the tradition that started back in 1993 remains alive and well in the South Carolina 400.
For 26 years, Late Model Stock competitors across the southeast had the Myrtle Beach 400 circled on their calendar. The driver who found the most success during that timeframe was Frank Deiny Jr. He tallied three consecutive Myrtle Beach 400 victories from 2003-05 before adding one more checkered flag in the prestigious race back in 2010, which he accomplished by passing Steve Grissom‘s son Kyle Grissom with 20 laps remaining.
Other notable drivers who have scored a Myrtle Beach 400 victory include Josh Berry, Christian Eckes, Myatt Snider, Timothy Peters and Scott Riggs. Will Burns claimed the final Myrtle Beach 400 in 2019.
Below is the complete list of Myrtle Beach 400 and South Carolina 400 winners.
Myrtle Beach 400
Gary St. Amant
Frank Deiny, Jr.
Frank Deiny, Jr.
Frank Deiny, Jr.
Frank Deiny, Jr.
South Carolina 400
Florence Motor Speedway track profile
Even casual race fans know about South Carolina‘s Darlington Raceway, one of the most iconic venues the NASCAR Cup Series visits on an annual basis.
Those same fans may or may not know about a NASCAR Home Track located just 15 miles south of Darlington known as the Diamond of the Southeast. Florence Motor Speedway, nestled in the town of Timmonsville, is indeed a gem of a short track.
Florence Motor Speedway, now a NASCAR-sanctioned venue and part of the NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Series, has been hosting local short track racing since 1982. It has been operated on the watch of owner and promotor Steve Zacharias since 2020.
Zacharias is the reason Florence‘s racing season begins with the IceBreaker, an event that features late-model stocks in addition to super trucks, limited late models and mini stocks. He brought the IceBreaker to Florence from nearby Myrtle Beach Speedway upon that track‘s closing.
The track itself is unique in its layout. The 0.4-mile paved oval features progressive banking in the corners, a combination that‘s prone to producing side-by-side racing.
Perhaps the most unique attribute of Florence Motor Speedway is that fact that, with the exception of the frontstretch in front of the grandstands, it has no outside wall.
“It‘s unusual the first time you go there and experience it,” 2020 NASCAR Advance Auto Parts Weekly Series champion Josh Berry told NASCAR.com. “But after a while, it‘s no big deal.
“It‘s a really fun track.”