The starting lineup for Saturday night’s Sprint Unlimited exhibition event at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway is in the fans’ hands, or at least in the hands of fans at the track this weekend. The eligibility requirements are set in regards to who is in — 2012 pole winners and previous event (formerly known as the Budweiser Shootout) winners — but fans in attendance on race day, Feb. 16, will vote onsite as to how the starting order will be determined.
The choices fans have include:
1. Number of career wins, with the winningest driver on the pole and the driver with the least wins starting last.
2. Last year’s final Sprint Cup Series championship points standings.
3. The order in which drivers won their pole starting spots in 2012, with the polesitter for the first race of 2012 starting in the pole spot for the Sprint Unlimited.
Fans will be able to vote at one of four Daytona Rewards Stations on DIS grounds or by texting. Texting directions will be provided to fans on the property.
Fans, both those who’ll be attending and those watching at home, may also vote on the race format. Voting is currently underway at NASCAR.com/sprintunlimited. Fans have a voice in such areas as segment lengths, driver eliminations and pit stop requirements. Segment length voting ends at 11:59 p.m. ET Feb. 13, while voting for other criteria ends at various times throughout the race.
The Sprint Unlimited is scheduled to take the green flag at approximately 8 p.m. ET. It can be seen live on FOX.
Drivers who are entered in the Sprint Unlimited include Kasey Kahne, Marcos Ambrose, Denny Hamlin, Tony Stewart, Greg Biffle, Kyle Busch, Matt Kenseth, Joey Logano, Jeff Gordon, Kevin Harvick, Ken Schrader, Juan Montoya, Aric Almirola, Jimmie Johnson, Mark Martin, Martin Truex Jr., Kurt Busch, Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Carl Edwards.
A.J. Allmendinger, Bill Elliott and Terry Labonte are eligible, but did not enter.