NASCAR expands Sprint Unlimited field

The grid for the pre-season exhibition race just got a little bigger.

NASCAR has opted to expand the field for the 2015 running of the pre-season exhibition race known as the Sprint Unlimited, which takes place at Daytona International Speedway. The 75-lap sprint offers no points and will kick off the new season on February 14th.

Eligibility ranges. All 16 drivers who qualified for this past year's Chase, all 2014 pole winners, as well as past Daytona 500 pole winners and victors of the Sprint Unlimited may compete. The only condition for former winners/pole-sitters being that they must have competed full-time in the previous season of racing.

The 2015 Sprint Unlimited has potential to be one of the most competitive ever

NASCAR's Steve O’Donnell

There must be at least 25 cars in the race, so if these requirements don't fill the field, then NASCAR reverts to drivers highest in points from the previous year who are not yet eligible. This rule will not needed for 2015, but MWR announced earlier today that Brian Vickers will miss that event (and the 500 itself) due to persisting 'health issues.'

“The 2015 Sprint Unlimited has potential to be one of the most competitive ever,” said NASCAR Executive Vice President and Chief Racing Development Officer Steve O’Donnell. “With more drivers eligible, the intensity level increases for our fans and competitors, making for a compelling start to the 2015 season.”

2015 eligible participants

  •          Kyle Busch (2014 pole winner)
  •          Austin Dillon (2014 pole winner)
  •          Jeff Gordon (2014 pole winner)
  •          David Gilliland (2014 pole winner)
  •          Denny Hamlin (2014 pole winner)
  •          Kevin Harvick (2014 pole winner)
  •          Jimmie Johnson (2014 pole winner)
  •          Matt Kenseth (2014 pole winner)
  •          Brad Keselowski (2014 pole winner)
  •          Kyle Larson (2014 pole winner)
  •          Joey Logano (2014 pole winner)
  •          Jamie McMurray (2014 pole winner)
  •          Brian Scott (2014 pole winner)
  •          Tony Stewart (2014 pole winner)
  •          Brian Vickers (2014 pole winner)
  •          Kurt Busch (former Sprint Unlimited winner)
  •          Dale Earnhardt Jr. (former Sprint Unlimited winner)
  •          Carl Edwards (former Daytona 500 pole winner)
  •          Danica Patrick (former Daytona 500 pole winner)
  •          Greg Biffle (former Daytona 500 pole winner)
  •          Martin Truex Jr. (former Daytona 500 pole winner)
  •          Ryan Newman (2014 Chase driver)
  •          AJ Allmendinger (2014 Chase driver)
  •          Kasey Kahne (2014 Chase driver)
  •          Aric Almirola (2014 Chase driver)
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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Dale Earnhardt Jr. , Jeff Gordon , Matt Kenseth , Tony Stewart , Kevin Harvick , Greg Biffle , Kurt Busch , Ryan Newman , Jimmie Johnson , Jamie McMurray , Kasey Kahne , Martin Truex Jr. , Brian Vickers , Carl Edwards , David Gilliland , Brad Keselowski , Denny Hamlin , Aric Almirola , Joey Logano , Brian Scott , Austin Dillon , Danica Patrick , Kyle Busch , Kyle Larson
Article type Breaking news