2011 Daytona 500 Presumable Entry List
As a big NASCAR fan, I am always intrigued to see who is on the entry list for an upcoming race. Just to let you know right off the bat, I am weird. I am not your typical NASCAR fan. During the season, I will look online to see if NASCAR releases the entry list to the next race. I can usually find the entry list to the next race usually that Tuesday before the race. My friend, Josh Shinn, usually has the entry list up on YouTube right away, as he is usually my source to see it.
But when I check it, I look at who’s in the cars that are not locked in. I like to see if there are any changes for drivers going to other cars.
So, now I present a presumable 2011 Daytona 500 entry list. These predictions are to give you an idea of what to expect come February. These predictions are based off of the past few years, and trends from this season. For those fans like me out there, I hope you enjoy and take a look. Drivers with a (?)* Symbol indicates there is a write up on that car number toward the bottom of the page. Those will give you an idea of who might drive that car come Daytona.
For this list, there are 53 drivers on it.
Updated since origional upload
00 David Reutimann
1 Jamie McMurray
2 Kurt Busch
4 Kasey Kahne
5 Mark Martin
6 David Ragan
7 Robby Gordon
9 Marcos Ambrose
10 Terry Labonte
11 Denny Hamlin
13 Casey Mears
14 Tony Stewart
16 Greg Biffle
17 Matt Kenseth
18 Kyle Busch
20 Joey Logano
21 Trevor Bayne 22 Kurt Busch
24 Jeff Gordon
27 Paul Menard
29 Kevin Harvick
31 Jeff Burton
33 Clint Bowyer
34 Travis Kvapil
37 David Gilliland
39 Ryan Newman
42 Juan Montoya
43 A.J. Allmendinger
46 JJ Yeley
47 Marcos Ambrose
48 Jimmie Johnson
56 Martin Truex Jr.
57 Norm Benning
71 (?)* 75 Derricke Cope 76 (?)*
78 Regan Smith
83 Brian Vickers
87 Joe Nemechek
88 Dale Earnhardt Jr.
90 Scott Riggs
97 Jeff Fuller
99 Carl Edwards
09 – Despite rumors surrounding the team that Bill Elliott would run the first five races, those rumors were denied. With a Past Champion’s Provisional, Bill Elliott can very easily get the 09 team into the top-35. No word on who will drive the car in Daytona.
Landon Cassill --- Landon ran a few races for the team, making his debut in the Sprint Cup Series with Phoenix Racing at the June Michigan race.
Mike Bliss --- Mike Bliss has ran this car on and off since 2008. With a top-10 with this team in the April race, Bliss could race the 09 machine. Bliss raced his way into the Daytona 500 in Tommy Baldwin’s machine this past year. Look for Bliss as a possible candidate for the 500.
12 – With Verizon Wireless leaving the team, the 12 team is locked into the first 5 races of 2011. With Brad Keselowski heading to the 2, and Kurt Busch heading to the 22, the 12 car’s owner points could be sold off to another team.
(Questionable at this time.)
23 – R3 Motorsports has attempted three Sprint Cup races the past two years, but has never been part of a Cup field. Using three different drivers, R3 tried for the Daytona 500 in 2009, and they tried for the Fall 2010 races at Charlotte with Johnny Sauter and Texas with Josh Wise, respectively.
Johnny Sauter --- If the 23 team shows up at Daytona, expect Johnny Sauter to try and race the car into the show. Johnny hasn’t raced the Daytona 500 since 2007, but he knows what to do and has 80 Sprint Cup races under his belt.
26 – Latitude 43 Motorsports had funding from the Air National Guard from the Spring Bristol race to the season finale. Falling out of the top-35 early in the season, the team came as close as under 75 points to the top-35 lock in, but the team struggled with seven different drivers. With no word from the team since the end of the season, it is questionable if the ANG will come back for 2011.
(Questionable at this time.)
36 – Tommy Baldwin Racing’s two years in Sprint Cup hasn’t produced much to boast about. With over 10 drivers attempting to race in the 36 car the last two seasons, the team has never been locked into the top-35 in Owner’s Points. The team has made the Daytona 500 both years it has been in existence. Perhaps, can this team find a driver to get the car into the 500 this February?
Dave Blaney --- Dave Blaney and Tommy Baldwin’s professional relationship dates back to 2006, when Baldwin was the crew chief for the car Dave Blaney drove. Blaney attempted a few races for TBR late this past season. Blaney hasn’t raced in the Daytona 500 since 2008, but he could just very well be the driver for Tommy Baldwin.
38 – Front Row Motorsports opened their three car operation this past year, with all three cars struggling to stay afloat in the top-35. This car fell out of the top-35 after a failed inspection in Michigan in June cost the team 100 Owner Points. The 38 car got as close as five points outside the top-35, but the team never made it back to the top-35. Owner Bob Jenkins could very well cut back to two cars, or even acquire the Owner Points from another team and attempt a full schedule in 2011.
Dave Blaney --- Blaney could very well be a candidate for this ride, if something were to pan out. Blaney ran a few races for this team in late 2010, and had a best finish of 24th at Atlanta.
Tony Raines --- Tony Raines split the ride with Dave Blaney in late 2010. Raines has raced for the team on and off since 2009, and raced the Nationwide program for two years.
Robert Richardson Jr. --- This one might be farfetched, but Richardson ran four races for FRM this past year with sponsorship from Mahindra Tractors. Possibly, Richardson could run for Rookie of the Year if Mahindra Tractors is willing to step up to the Sprint Cup side. It could very well be a repeat of a Kevin Conway situation, as Jenkins is desperately trying to find funding.
55 – PRISM Motorsports’ Sprint Cup program has had their cars running at the finish a combined four times the past two years, as this team is notorious for starting and parking. With the team cutting back to a one car operation team, two cars could compete in the Gatorade Dules come Daytona, or just one.
Michael Waltrip --- Michael Waltrip plans on running the Daytona 500 this year. Waltrip wants to run a select few races next year, and if he could get Aarons to sign on board again, Waltrip could race this car next year.
64 – In its two years in existence, Gunselman Motorsports has failed to finish a Sprint Cup race, with the team’s best finish coming in Las Vegas in 2009, 35th. This team did not attempt the Daytona 500 last year, but they could very well attempt the 500 this upcoming year.
Landon Cassill --- Cassill made a few starts in this car toward the end of the season. Cassill could be a top candidate to attempt the Daytona 500 this year.
Geoff Bodine --- With brother Todd leaving the team mid season, Geoff could very well get back into the seat. In a recent interview with The Racing Experts, Bodine says that he would like to get back into Sprint Cup racing. He tried for the Daytona 500 in this car in 2009, and could be a likely candidate for the job.
66 – PRISM Motorsports’ Sprint Cup program has had their cars running at the finish a combined four times the past two years, as this team is notorious for starting and parking. With the team cutting back to a one car operation team the 66 team will likely compete in the Gatorade Dules come Daytona.
Michael Waltrip --- Michael Waltrip plans on running the Daytona 500 this year. Waltrip wants to run a select few races next year, and if he could get Aarons to sign on board again, Waltrip could race this car next year in a few races, bringing on possible funding for this one car operation.
71 – Now, here is a team that got lucky. Using the Past Champions Provisional of Bobby Labonte, the team easily stayed in the top-35 all year. Using different drivers, TRG start and parked at times, and would race when funding was found. TRG’s 71 car would start and park last of the cars to do so, to maximize winnings and precious Owner Points. TRG has a long list of candidates to possibly run the car in the 500.
Elliott Sadler --- Having raced the Daytona 500 every year since 1999, Sadler has had decent finishes, and has always been a top-10 contender. Sadler almost won the 2009 Daytona 500. TRG is looking for sponsorship as TaxSlayer.com is leaving for JR Motorsports. Sadler could very well be a contender for this ride, and start TRG with a bang for 2011.
Reed Sorenson --- Sorenson replaced Brian Vickers for most of the races he was out this season. With a top-10 finish in Daytona in July, Sorenson could be tapped to drive this car. Like Sadler, Sorenson does not have a full time ride in Sprint Cup competition for 2011 at this time.
Mike Bliss --- From racing just once in the Cup Series in 2008, to scoring two top-10 finishes this season, Mike Bliss ran impressive races at the restrictor plate races he ran. Bliss finished 10th at Talladega in the #09 car in April and 9th at Daytona in July in the 71 car. Surprisingly, Bliss didn’t race the fall Talladega race for either team, as his last two restrictor plate races have produced top-10 runs. With TRG locked in, they might want to try and recapture some Daytona magic.
Landon Cassill --- This name has popped up so many times on this story. Cassill had run for four different teams this past season, so he has opened up his avenues. He is likely to attempt the Daytona 500, but it is questionable if he will run this car.
Andy Lally --- Andy Lally has had a long NASCAR relationship with TRG. He’s ran six events in Sprint Cup for TRG the past two years, with the best finish this year at Watkins Glen Road Course – 18th. Andy Lally could be chosen to run the 500 in February, but this claim is questionable.
76 – America’s Racing Team, ART, was launched in mid-2010. The team said they would attempt the Daytona 500 this upcoming year, as they are asking for donations from the fans to help fund the car.
David Stremme --- In my opinion, Stremme’s best chance at attempting the Daytona 500 might come in this car. He raced 11 races last year, all in the 26 car, and he is looking into starting his own NASCAR Nationwide Series Team. Don’t be surprised to see Stremme in the car.
77 – With this car’s future up in the air, it is questionable if they will arrive in Daytona. Roger Penske says, “It all depends on a sponsor.” If the team can land a full time sponsor, expect the 77 car back.
Sam Hornish Jr. --- If sponsorship can be found, expect Hornish to race in the Daytona 500. Hornish will move back to the Nationwide Series, and run the Indianapolis 500 next year if a Sprint Cup deal can’t be found.
92 – K-Automotive Motorsports tried for the Daytona 500, and tried for a few races in 2010, but this team was unsuccessful in making any races. According to SPEED TV, the car they used to qualify was the car that Kasey Kahne won in at Lowe’s Motor Speedway in 2008. No official word if they are attempting the Daytona 500.
Mike Wallace --- If this team is going to Daytona, they best bring someone with restrictor plate experience. Even though Mike Wallace hasn’t raced in the Daytona 500 since 2007, Wallace’s last run in the 500 was a fourth place finish, as he has had a great history at the two biggest tracks in NASCAR.
Brian Keselowski --- With rumors that his team could be moving up to the Sprint Cup Series, Brian Keselowski has attempted a few races for the Sprint Cup Series, but he has never made a race. Brian could very well try for the Daytona 500, and try to get more Cup experience in the Gatorade Duels.
Dennis Setzer --- Dennis Setzer has raced seven Cup races, all coming in 1998. Setzer tried to attempt the Fall Martinsville race for this team, and had fast enough practice speeds to make the field. However, the team withdrew from qualifying, and he never had the chance to race. Although this is unlikely, Setzer is a potential candidate for the ride.
21 – TheRacingExperts.com has unconfirmed reports leading that the #19 owner points of Richard Petty Motorsports will be transferred over to the 21 team. Wood Brothers Racing presumable plans are that they would run full time IF sponsorship is found. Despite Trevor Bayne testing in Daytona, Bill Elliott will be in the car for Daytona.
Kevin Conway – Conway does have ExtenZe as a sponsor, as they tend to follow him to any car that he goes to. Despite his lack of experience, Conway could be in a car come Daytona, as he will likely bring ExtenZe with him to help get funding for that ride.
UPDATES SINCE THE UPLOAD:
-JJ Yeley has resigned with Whitney Motorsports, and will start the 500
-Trevor Bayne will drive the 21 car for WBR thanks to the owner points from the 19 team.
-David Starr could get a ride in the 500 with the new part time team, Leavine-Fenton Racing, but they have not announced plans to drive the 500.
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