Daytona Duels 2021 live updates, results, highlights from Daytona 500 qualifying races
NASCAR is completing its qualifying process for the Daytona 500 on Thursday night with the annual Duel races at Daytona International Speedway. The twin 150-mile races will set not only the starting positions for the Feb. 14 race, but also determine the final two drivers to make the 40-car field.
Phase 1 of qualifying took place Wednesday night with pole qualifying. Hendrick Motorsports teammates Alex Bowman and William Byron posted the two fastest qualifying lap times and thus gained the pole and No. 2 position, respectively, for the race.
Two other drivers — Ryan Preece and David Ragan — earned entry into the race with their qualifying runs. They secured two of the four open spots in the field. The other two spots will be up for grabs in the Duels, with six drivers competing for them. The overall qualifying results set the lineups for the Duel races: Drivers in odd-numbered qualifying positions will race in Duel 1; drivers in even-numbered positions will race in Duel 2.Sporting News is tracking live race updates and lap-by-lap highlights from the 2021 Daytona Duels races. Follow below for complete results and the official starting lineup for the Daytona 500.MORE: Watch the Daytona Duels live with fuboTV (7-day free trial)Daytona 500 starting lineupThe first race will establish the inside row for the Daytona 500. The results will be updated below when Duel 1 is complete.Duel 1 resultsStarting position
Duel 2 resultsThe second race will establish the inside row for the Daytona 500. The results will be updated below when Duel 2 is complete.Starting position
Daytona Duels 2021 live updates, highlights(All times Eastern)7:35 p.m.: We’re through the first quarter of Duel 1 (15 laps of 60), and top three are Aric Almirola, Joey Logano and Christopher Bell. Austin Cindric is leading the open drivers needing to race into the 500. This will all have changed by the time you read this, because Daytona.7:30 p.m.: Denny Hamlin wanted no part of a potential Big One inside the first 10 laps. The two-time defending 500 winner dropped way below the double yellow and shuffled himself to the back of the pack. 7:20 p.m.: Green flag! They’re racing on the superspeedway!7:10 p.m.: Tyler Reddick will start Duel 1 at the rear because of unapproved adjustments. Fox Sports reported Reddick’s team changed the transmission in Reddick’s No. 8 car.
7 p.m.: NASCAR reminded drivers (with animation) that they need to keep their cars above the double yellow line on the track:Daytona Duels 2021 start timesDuel 1: 7 p.m. ETDuel 2: 8:45 p.m. ETThe lineup for Duel 1 consists mainly of the drivers who finished in odd-numbered spots in pole qualifying. That means pole sitter Alex Bowman will be on the front row for his Duel race, along with Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (third in qualifying). The lineup for Duel 2 consists mainly of the drivers who finished in even-numbered spots in pole qualifying. That means second-place qualifier William Byron will lead the field for his Duel race along with Bubba Wallace (fourth in qualifying).