Starting Position DOES Matter if You Want to Win the Daytona 500
The Budweiser Duels are now complete, and the field has been set for the 57th running of the Daytona 500 this Sunday. Jeff Gordon will start on the Pole in his last 500, with teammate Jimmie Johnson joining him on the front row.
However, a number of big names are starting deep in the field. Brad Keselowski, Matt Kenseth, and Denny Hamlin (among others) will start outside the Top 25.
Some argue that starting position at a restrictor plate track doesn’t hold a ton of value. Matt Kenseth (39th) made the biggest move up the field to win the Great American Race in 2009. He actually started from the back of the field (43rd) after crashing in the Duel race and being forced to go to a backup car.
But history seems to suggest that past winners have shared one thing in common: a strong starting position.
|Avg. Starting Position of Past Winners (56 races)||8.57|
|Won from the Pole||10|