Friday, October 7 2022

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Spectators watch crew members prepare their vehicles in the garage as the rain falls before a NASCAR Cup Series auto race at Daytona International Speedway, Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, in Daytona Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)

PA

The NASCAR Cup Series race at Daytona International Speedway was rainy Saturday night and rescheduled for Sunday.

The 400-mile race, the regular season finale that will decide the final two playoff spots, will now begin at 10 a.m. EDT. It will air on CNBC. The weather forecast predicts 40% chance in the morning, increasing to 70% in the afternoon.

Fifteen drivers remain in the hunt for the playoffs. Two places are still open, although one of them will go to Ryan Blaney or Martin Truex Jr.

Aric Almirola, Chris Buescher, Harrison Burton, Cole Custer, Austin Dillon, Ty Dillon, Todd Gilliland, Justin Haley, Erik Jones, Brad Keselowski, Michael McDowell, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and Bubba Wallace must win to enter the 16 field pilots of the playoffs.

Blaney and Truex can advance without winning at Daytona. If either Blaney or Truex wins at Daytona, the other automatically gets points. If any of the 14 pilots already locked in the playoffs land in victory lane, Blaney and Truex would do so based on points. If there is another new winner on Sunday, whoever finishes the race with more points between Blaney and Truex will advance.

This will be the third summer race at Daytona in years delayed by one day. The 2014 and 2019 events have been postponed due to weather conditions.

NASCAR officials moved the Daytona summer race from July to August in 2020 in part in hopes of avoiding summer thunderstorms. The Xfinity race which started on Friday evening was delayed by three hours before Jeremy Clements managed to avoid four late multi-car collisions and reach victory lane for the first time since 2017 and the second time in 421 races.

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More AP Auto Racing: https://apnews.com/hub/auto-racing and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

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