NASCAR Cup: Michael Waltrip confirms he’ll run Daytona 500
Photo courtesy of Getty Images for NASCAR
By AMANDA VINCENT
In responding to a fan question via Twitter just before Christmas, Michael Waltrip confirmed that he would compete as a driver in the Daytona 500 on Feb. 26.
While Waltrip has confirmed entrance in the 2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season-opener, details regarding for whom he’d drive have not been released, other than he’ll be driving for a Toyota team with sponsorship backing from Aaron’s with whom Waltrip has a long-running relationship. Waltrip is a former co-owner in the series, but his Michael Waltrip Racing team shuttered its operations at the end of the 2015 season.
Despite retiring from full-time competition as a driver in 2009, Waltrip continues to be a fixture in Cup-level restrictor-plate races, including the Daytona 500. He has competed, as a driver in every Daytona but one since 1987. He failed to make the race in 2012.
Waltrip is a two-time Daytona 500 winner, winning the race in 2001 and 2003, both as a driver for Dale Earnhardt Inc.
Waltrip drove for BK Racing in the 2016 Daytona 500, finishing 30th after starting 36th. It was one of two starts he made last season. Waltrip also drove for Premium Motorsports at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway in 2016. He finished 12th at Talladega.