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Daytona 500: guide for first time attendees

DAYTONA BEACH, FLORIDA – FEBRUARY 16: The Air Force Thunderbirds perform a flyover prior to the NASCAR Cup Series 62nd Annual Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 16, 2020 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)


Each February, more than 100,000 NASCAR fanatics descend on Daytona Beach in Florida. The reason: to experience the thrills and excitement of Daytona 500 in person. Known as the most prestigious event in the stock car racing calendar, attending the Daytona 500 is on the bucket list of many racing fans across the world.

Yet due to its popularity, it’s not as simple as rocking up to Daytona Beach on the day, gaining entry to the famous Daytona International Speedway, and enjoying the 500-mile long race between NASCAR’s elite drivers. With reserved seats selling out each time for the last five years, you have to be prepared if you want to be part of the event. 

Plus it’s not just about buying your tickets or booking a hotel room. To maximize your viewing experience, there are also various points to remember once you’re at the race. With that in mind, here’s a guide for first-time attendees to Daytona 500. 

Book your tickets ASAP

Before moving on with anything else, you should purchase your Daytona 500 tickets as soon as possible. Admittedly, the event doesn’t sell out straight away once tickets go on sale. Yet if you want to secure the best-reserved seats in the house, you need to be quick off the mark. 

For the upcoming Daytona 500 in 2021, tickets start at a reasonable $125 each. However, beware going for the cheapest option. Yes, you will gain entry to the race, which is the main priority. The issue is your view will be restricted. Due to this, you should go up the pricing tier until landing on seats that offer a fantastic bird’s eye view of the entire racetrack. 

Pick the right accommodation 

While ticket prices might be reasonable, the one significant expense of the trip – assuming you’re staying overnight – is the accommodation. As expected, hotels in and around Daytona Beach ramp up their prices when NASCAR arrives in the city. 

Even so, you will typically want to pay for the luxury of having a central base to get to the Daytona International Speedway with ease. If you’re struggling to come up with the cash for a hotel room, you can acquire a loan. For instance, LoanOnYourCar is a specialist provider of log book loans. A log book loan is secured by your car, so there’s no credit check, and you receive the funds instantly – perfect if there’s only one room left at your accommodation of choice. 

Points to remember during the race

You’re at the race. Excitement levels have reached fever pitch. Yet before you can start cheering on your favorite NASCAR driver, there are a few points to remember. These include: 

  • Wear sunscreen: It might be February, but this is Florida. With the sun beating down on your body for hours, always be prepared by wearing sunscreen. 
  • Take rain ponchos: Due to the unpredictable nature of the weather, you need to be prepared for all situations. As umbrellas are not permitted at Daytona 500, the next best option is rain ponchos. 
  • Use earplugs: If you’ve never heard 40 race cars flying past you at close to 200mph, you can be shocked by the noise. With this happening for hours, protect your ears by wearing earplugs. 
  • Binoculars: To enhance your viewing experience, take a pair of binoculars with you. This way, you can get a closer look at pit stops and closely follow your favorite drivers. 

Sit tight afterwards 

After a long day of racing fun, you’ll no doubt be exhausted and want to get back to your hotel room immediately. There’s just one problem with this: everyone else wants to do the same. Traffic is notoriously bad once the event has finished, to the point where you could be sat staring at another car’s trunk for hours. 

To avoid this, it’s recommended to simply sit back and wait for everyone else to sample the snail’s pace traffic. While they’re doing that, you can have a meal at one of the local eateries. Once done, you should have an easy drive away from the track. 

Enjoy your time in Daytona Beach

Rather than simply visiting for Daytona 500, you should turn the trip into a memorable holiday. Daytona Beach has plenty to offer for everyone. For a start, you should pay a visit to The Motorsports Hall of Fame of America Museum. Situated at the Daytona International Speedway, this museum contains exciting displays any NASCAR fan would want to see up close. 

Aside from racing-themed attractions, you also have the thrilling Daytona Lagoon, the tranquil Tomoka State Park, and the vibrant Main Street Pier that are well worth experiencing. 

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Posted by on June 26, 2020. Filed under Cup Series,Featured,NASCAR. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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