Top storylines, race information, key trends for Friday night’s NextEra Energy 250

TRACK: Daytona International Speedway (2.5-mile oval)

Coverage: 7:30 p.m. ET

Green Flag: 7:44 p.m. ET


Radio: MRN

Distance: 100 Laps/250 Miles

Stage Lengths: 20/20/60

Fresh Faces Up Front?

Grant Enfinger’s win in last year’s race wasn’t too big of a surprise. He’s a good superspeedway racer. But, just look at the finishing order behind him. Jordan Anderson (2nd), Codie Rohrbaugh (3rd), Derek Kraus (4th) and Natalie Decker (5th) rounded out the top five. The year prior, Austin Hill won this race. That was somewhat of a shock. You got Spencer Boyd (4th) also in the top five in the end too.

This race has always provided a surprise up front battling for the win in the end. Will this year’s do the same?

Stacked Field

The big news of the offseason was that Thorsport will swap from Ford power to Toyota. This series has also seen a lot of seats get taken lately too. DGR announced Hailie Deegan and Tanner Gray are back with them. Taylor Gray, Tanner’s younger brother, will drive seven races in the No. 17 Ford too. David Gilliland will drive the Truck this weekend though at Daytona.

Derek Kraus is back in the No. 19 Toyota. Todd Gilliland is also back in the No. 38 Ford. We know Austin Hill is back with HRE for a third season. GMS will have Sheldon Creed, Tyler Ankrum and Zane Smith back with Chase Purdy moving up to replace the departing Moffitt. They also added Raphael Lessard for what was initially 12 races and now is a full time basis. John Hunter Nemechek will replace Lessard with KBM in the No. 4 Ford while Chandler Smith will move into Christian Eckes’ seat.

Niece will see Carson Hocevar drive the No. 40 Chevrolet, Ryan Truex in one and Brett Moffitt in the the No. 45 Chevrolet. James Buescher is back again, this time driving a fourth Niece Truck at Daytona only.

Young’s Motorsports announced that Spencer Boyd will return to the No. 20 Chevrolet in 2021 too.

We will also see the entire top seven of last year’s points back with adding someone like Nemechek to the mix too and you get what should shape up to be a wild season as well.

Key Trends:

  • Todd Bodine is the only driver in series history to have won back-to-back at Daytona (2008-2009).
  • Toyota dominated with eight consecutive wins at Daytona from 2007 to 2014, but Austin Hill’s win in 2019 was the first Toyota driver to have won for the manufacturer at the track since 2014.
  • Each manufacturer has won in the last three years. Chevrolet (2018), Toyota (2019) and Ford (2020). Who breaks the trend on Friday night?
  • Only 4 drivers in NASCAR Camping World Truck Series history have won the pole award as well as the race at Daytona International Speedway. Joe Ruttman (2001), Mark Martin (2006), Jack Sprague (2007) and Kaz Grala (2017) are it.
  • 13 of the 21 year history of this race has seen the winner come from a top 10 starting spot. In fact, only six times has someone started outside of Row 7 on back.
  • Only Johnny Sauter and Todd Bodine has won this race multiple times. Austin Hill, Timothy Peters and Grant Enfinger are the only ones entered on this year’s entry list to have won this race in the past.
  • Last year’s race was the closest finish ever (.010 seconds).

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