Sunday, February 18News That Matters

How to watch the 2018 Daytona 500

From our friends at Fox:

The Daytona 500 will take place Feb. 18, 2018. Pictured is 2017 champion Kurt Busch.

The Daytona 500 will take place Feb. 18, 2018. Pictured is 2017 champion Kurt Busch.

(Peter Casey-USA TODAY Sports)

NASCAR fans, get ready: the Daytona 500 is less than a week away.

Drivers will hit the track this month at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Fla., in hopes of winning the 500-mile race.

Read on for what you should know about this year’s competition.

What time is the Daytona 500?

Feb 26, 2017; Daytona Beach, FL, USA; The field crosses the start finish line during the 2017 Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway. Mandatory Credit: Peter Casey-USA TODAY Sports - 9902068

The Daytona 500 will take place later this month.

(Peter Casey-USA TODAY Sports)

Viewers can tune in Feb. 18, 2018, at 2:30 p.m. ET on FOX to catch the action.

Those with a participating TV provider can also watch the race online and on smart devices using FOX Sports GO.

Fans dying to see the Daytona 500 in person can buy tickets online.

How many laps are there?

"The Great American Race" consists of 200 laps.

Who are some of this year's drivers?

Expect to see 24-year-old Alex Bowman, who has already earned the top starting spot for the Daytona 500.

NASCAR star Danica Patrick — who announced she will retire later this year — is also slated to compete.

Ta da! 🙌🏻 here’s my No 7 @GoDaddy Chevy wrapped and ready for Daytona! Love the #DanicaDouble!

— Danica Patrick (@DanicaPatrick) February 2, 2018

Patrick tweeted that her vehicle was "wrapped and ready for Daytona!"

Jeffrey Earnhardt — racer Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s nephew — will enter the race, too, Yahoo! Sports reported.

Cars are coming together @StarcomRacing and the @VRXsimulators paint scheme is pretty sweet #NASCAR #racing #DAYTONA500

— Jeffrey Earnhardt (@JEarnhardt1) February 4, 2018


Who is the grand marshal?

Dale Earnhardt Jr. prior to the NASCAR Cup Series 301 auto race at the New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon, N.H., Sunday, July 16, 2017.(AP Photo/Charles Krupa)

Dale Earnhardt Jr. will be the grand marshal for the Daytona 500.

(Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

That role is going to be filled by Earnhardt Jr., a two-time Daytona 500 champion. He won in 2004 and 2014.

The 43-year-old will give the famous command for drivers to start their engines, a Daytona International Speedway press release said.

Actor Owen Wilson, who voiced the race car Lightning McQueen in the "Cars" animated movie series, was grand marshal in 2017.

What else should I know?

FILE - In this July 17, 2017, file photo, actress Charlize Theron waves as she arrives for the world premiere of the movie 'Atomic Blonde' in Berlin, Germany. Academy Award winner Charlize Theron has been named honorary starter for the 60th running of the Daytona 500. The 42-year-old actress will wave the green flag for the season-opening race Sunday in NASCAR's Monster Energy Cup Series. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn, File)

Charlize Theron is this year's honorary starter for the Daytona 500.

(AP Photo/Michael Sohn, File)

Former NFL player Peyton Manning is set to serve as the honorary pace car driver. He'll be behind the wheel of the Toyota pace car and lead the 40-car field to the green flag to start the race.

Charlize Theron has been named honorary starter, and will wave the green flag for the season-opening race in NASCAR's Monster Energy Cup Series.

Country music group Rascal Flatts is set to perform a pre-race concert, while Navy Band Southeast will peform the national anthem.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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