With the Chase for the Sprint Cup well underway, teams are already thinking about the 2014 season. The first stop of the new season is always Daytona, and next year the preseason testing garage will be more crowded than ever. Preseason Thunder, the annual test session held at Daytona International Speedway in preparation for the season-opening races at the 2.5-mile superspeedway, will include all three NASCAR national series – the NASCAR Sprint Cup, NASCAR Nationwide and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.
“Preseason Thunder at Daytona offers teams an opportunity to prepare for one of the most important race weekends of the season,” said Robin Pemberton, NASCAR vice president of competition. “Races at Daytona International Speedway are unique to NASCAR competition, and Preseason Thunder will not only give all three of our national series an opportunity to test, but will allow us to settle upon a rules package that will benefit our teams and provide the best on-track action for our fans.”
Kicking off the “Road to Daytona” which culminates with the 56th running of the Daytona 500 on Feb. 23, 2014, Preseason Thunder testing begins Thursday and Friday, Jan. 9-10, with the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series participating in two days – and four sessions – of on-track activity. NASCAR Nationwide Series testing will follow on Saturday and Sunday, Jan. 11-12, with the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series testing on Monday and Tuesday, Jan. 13-14.
It’s the first time since 2008 that the Nationwide Series and Camping World Truck Series teams have participated in January testing sessions at Daytona International Speedway. All test sessions are scheduled between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. each day, weather permitting. Each session includes a lunch break from noon until 1 p.m.
“We’re looking forward to hosting all three of NASCAR’s national touring series for Preseason Thunder,” Daytona International Speedway President Joie Chitwood III said. “Having the Nationwide and Camping World Truck Series teams join the stars of the Sprint Cup Series in testing the high banks will ignite plenty of excitement for the start of the new NASCAR season.”
In addition to the on-track action, NASCAR and Daytona International Speedway announced the return of Preseason Thunder Fan Fest, a fan-favorite event featuring driver question-and-answer opportunities, autograph sessions and more. The Preseason Thunder Fan Fests are scheduled on Thursday night, Jan. 9 for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and Saturday night, Jan. 11 for the NASCAR Nationwide Series.
The schedule of driver question-and-answer and autograph sessions will be finalized closer to the event. Tickets for Preseason Thunder, which include the autograph session wristbands, will be available for purchase on Monday, Nov. 18 by calling 1-800-PITSHOP. Tickets for the NASCAR’s biggest, richest and most prestigious race – the 56th annual DAYTONA 500 on Sunday, Feb. 23 – start at $65 and are available online or by calling 1-800-PITSHOP.
Fans can watch each day’s testing at no cost from a section of the Oldfield Grandstands on the Daytona International Speedway frontstretch.
The next NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race is the AAA 400 at Dover International Speedway on Sunday, September 29 at 2 p.m. ET, airing on ESPN, Motor Racing Network Radio and SiriusXM Satellite Radio.
Fans can follow NASCAR on Twitter and stay up to speed on the latest news by using hashtags #NASCAR, #DAYTONA500 and #ROADTODAYTONA. Stay connected with Daytona International Speedway on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest for the latest news all season long. Fans can also follow the latest on DAYTONA Rising, the $400 million frontstretch renovation at the “World Center of Racing” by using #DAYTONARising on Twitter.
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