Victory Lap Nascar Race Car gift basket of beer bottle nuts, checkered-flag butter mints, dip-a-stick pretzels with honey mustard dipping sauce, car-themed music CD...
Winner of the Daytona 500, the first event of the NASCAR season
No. 29 Chevy
won by 0.02 seconds over Mark Martin
Richard Childress, owner of Harvick's car
the Great American Race
the Super Bowl of stock-car racing
185,000 in attendance at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida
200 laps, 500 miles
Cal Ripken Jr. drove this year's pace car
Nicolas Cage, the Grand Marshall
"Gentlemen, start your engines."
TOPICS & ISSUES
* Toyota the first foreign manufacturer to compete in the Cup series since Jaguar in the 1950s (lots of anti-Japanese sentiment brewing)
* Formula One driver Juan Pablo Montoya of Colombia brings a Latino flavor to the Nextel Cup this year
* five crew chiefs and a team vice president were suspended
* five drivers and teams were assessed fines and subtracted race points
RACE-CAR DRIVERS TO KNOW
- won the Daytona 500 and captured his first Next Cup championship last year
- crew chief Chad Knaus
two-time Cup champion
crew chief Kenny Francis was suspended
- crew chief Robbie Reiser was suspended
DALE EARNHARDT JR.
- crew chief is cousin Tony Eury Jr.
- - -
- a sport that began with moonshiners
- Southeastern roots
National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing
- television deal with Fox and ABC/ESPN
- TV ratings second only to professional football
- second-tier Busch Series racing in Mexico City and Montreal
- president Mike Helton