Daytona 500 Start Time: Wet Weather Clouds NASCAR's Current Schedule

Donald WoodFeatured ColumnistFebruary 26, 2012

DAYTONA BEACH, FL - FEBRUARY 25:  James Buescher, driver of the #30 Fraternal Order of Eagles Chevrolet, celebrates with the checkered flag after winning the NASCAR Nationwide Series DRIVE4COPD 300 at Daytona International Speedway on February 25, 2012 in Daytona Beach, Florida.  (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
Chris Graythen/Getty Images

There is no question that the Daytona 500 is the Super Bowl of the NASCAR season, but this race may be facing the underhandedness of Mother Nature.

With rain on the radar and passing squalls happening all morning at Daytona International Speedway, there are serious questions about the actual start time of this race and how long it will continue.

The scheduled start time for the event is 1:00 p.m. ET, but any fan in the know understands that the race starts much closer to 1:30 p.m. With the track still fairly wet, there are questions about whether it will be dry enough to race on before the scheduled time.

For NASCAR, this is unthinkable.

There has never been an edition of the Great American Race that has been postponed until the following Monday, but weatherman across Florida are concerned about the start and the conclusion of the event.

There appears to be a break in the system from 12-2 p.m., but the system behind it on the radar leads weathermen to believe that even if the race gets going, it may not have the chance to finish.

The biggest race on the sports calendar taking place on a Monday due to weather is a ratings nightmare. With everything riding on a great start to their season, this is the kind of event that could really hurt NASCAR as a sport.

NASCAR has their dryers out on the track, and they are doing their best to make it work, but they need to be realistic. If it’s not dry, they can’t race; I don’t care how big the event is.

Safety should be and always needs to be the top priority in this sport. Everything else can just work itself out.

 

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