The Daytona 500 is the culmination of weeks of testing and qualifying, all open to the public. There are a number of races in the week prior to the main event, beginning with the Busch Clash on the preceding Sunday. Final qualifying begins on the Thursday with the Twins, the first 20 in the two races going through to the 500. On Friday, the International Race of Champions takes place, followed by the Goodys 300 on Saturday.
Seats for the Daytona 500 normally sell out way in advance, though it is possible to have a restricted view from the infield at dollars 35 (pounds 23.50) per person plus dollars 10 parking. However, Page and Moy, the Leicester travel company specialising in motor racing tours, is organising a trip to the race. The seven-night package, costing pounds 599 per person, is based in Orlando, an hour's drive from Daytona Beach. Grandstand seats are extra. Tickets for the qualifying and preceding races are available from the track, priced from dollars 30-dollars 70.
The Daytona International Speedway is a D-shaped oval, with 31-degree banking at the ends. Last year's race was run at an amazing average of 168mph, with few yellow flags, when cars must remain in formation behind the pace car after an accident. Racing restarts when the track is clear.
Daytona 500, 20 February.
Daytona International Speedway, PO Box 2801, Daytona Beach, Florida 32120-2081 (Tel: 010 1 904 253 7223).
Daytona Beach Convention and Visitors' Bureau, 121 Gloucester Place, London, W1H 3PJ. (Tel: 071-935 7756).
United States Travel and Tourism Administration, PO Box 1EN, London W1A 1EN. (Tel: 071-495 4466).
Page and Moy Ltd, 136-140 London Road, Leicester LE2 1EN (Tel: 0533-524344): Seven nights in Orlando, pounds 599 per person. Tickets for Daytona 500: Joe Weatherley Grandstand pounds 56.50, Oldfield Grandstand pounds 28.50.Reuse content