On a night where the entire country will be celebrating its independence, what's more American than a night race at Daytona International Speedway?
Though it won't be the premier series, many of the top Sprint Cup drivers will once again fire up their engines in the Nationwide Series. Just a week after Kevin Harvick took the checkered flag in Kentucky, another notable name could visit Victory Lane at Daytona.
Drivers like Joey Logano, Kasey Kahne and, of course, Kyle Busch will all be starting in the Subway Firecracker 250 along with the full field of young drivers.
As for some new faces to the series, one driver to watch will be Darrell Wallace Jr. The two-time Camping World Truck Series winner will be making his fifth Nationwide start alongside truck owner Busch on Friday night.
Here's a look at the schedule, standings and full preview for the Subway Firecracker 250 in Daytona.
Subway Firecracker 250 Information
Where: Daytona International Speedway, Daytona, Florida
When: Friday, July 4, 7:30 p.m. ET
Live Stream: WatchESPN
|2014 Nationwide Series Standings|
|Pos.||Driver||Points||Wins||Top 5||Top 10|
Just eight points currently separate first and third in the points standings after Regan Smith took a tumble down to third place. Meanwhile, Elliott Sadler and Chase Elliott climbed up the standings, with Sadler collecting another strong finish in Kentucky.
Luckily for Smith, he now returns to the only track where he's collected a win this season in Daytona. It was a stark change from the previous year at the course when Smith was involved in a huge accident with Kyle Larson that sent parts of Larson's car into the grandstand.
Smith spoke about his win and the wreck, per Brant James of ESPN.com:
It still doesn't feel real. You know, last year was a tough pill to swallow. There were a lot of circumstances around it. You know, nobody felt worse than me on Sunday morning and Saturday night. We were fortunate that all turned out well with all the fans and everything.
Outside of Smith, though, the race at Daytona has been won by a full-time Sprint Cup driver 17 out of the last 19 times. The only other driver to steal away a win was James Buescher back in 2012, so the now 24-year-old might be another racer to watch this week.
With just one top-10 finish this season, Buescher has hardly been the same contender he was back in 2012, when he captured eight such results. That victory also just so happened to be his only win in the Nationwide Series.
As for Sadler, the new points leader finished fifth at Daytona earlier this season and might be in line for his second win of the year. The Joe Gibbs Racing driver likely won't be waiting back for a top-five finish this weekend, as Chris Knight of Catchfence.com explains:
Then there's his teammate Wallace, who will finally be returning to Nationwide at Daytona. He might have a chance to race full-time in the series in the next few seasons, but for now he'll make the most of his opportunity.
Wallace noted the difficulty at Daytona, per Jim Peltz of the Chicago Tribune: "With superspeedway tracks, things happen so quickly and we just need to keep ourselves out of trouble and be there at the end to have a chance for the win."
With a chance to make history, he'll have to hold off truck owner Busch and several other Sprint Cup drivers to earn a monumental win. Given the past winners, one premier series driver could be notching a victory before rolling out on Saturday night.
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