WWE Superstar Sasha Banks will serve as the Honorary Starter for the 63rd DAYTONA 500 on Sunday, February 14. She will waive the green flag on the Great American Race, which is set for a 2:30 p.m. ET (FOX, FOX Deportes, MRN Radio and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio) start at the 2.5-mile World Center of Racing.
“I am honored to be the official starter of the Daytona 500. I would like to thank NASCAR and our partners at FOX for this opportunity,” said Sasha Banks. “I can’t wait to get out to the track in front of the great fans and find out which driver has what it takes to be a ‘Legit Boss’.”
Banks can be seen each week on Friday Night SmackDown®, which airs live every Friday night on FOX. The current SmackDown Women’s Champion, she is one of the most celebrated Superstars in WWE, having held every major Women’s Championship in WWE. As a pioneer of the WWE Women’s Division, Banks has continuously broken down barriers and shattered glass ceilings, helping usher in WWE’s current Women’s Evolution. She is a former NXT® Women’s Champion, a multi-time Raw® Women’s Champion, and one half of the first-ever WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions.
“The tradition of having high-profile athletes, including those from WWE, as part of the Great American Race continues this year with Sasha Banks as our Honorary Starter, and we couldn’t be more excited,” said Daytona International Speedway President Chip Wile. “She is a true champion, and I know our fans will be anxious to see her drop the green flag on the historical 63rd DAYTONA 500.”
Banks’ appearance at the DAYTONA 500 marks the second consecutive year that a WWE Superstar has been a part of pre-race ceremonies. In 2020, Sheamus® was the Honorary Pace Car Driver. Daytona International Speedway has a long history of professional athletes being involved in official capacities at the DAYTONA 500, dating to 1977 when then-Oakland Raiders quarterback Ken Stabler was the Honorary Starter. More recently, another WWE Superstar, John Cena, was the 2012 Honorary Starter and the 2016 Honorary Pace Car Driver while former NFL great Peyton Manning was Honorary Pace Car Driver in 2018.
For information on the 2021 DAYTONA 500 and all Speedweeks Presented By AdventHealth events, which kicks off on Tuesday, Feb. 9 with the 43rd Annual Busch Clash on the DAYTONA Road Course under the lights, fans can visit www.DAYTONA500.com or call 1-800-PITSHOP.
Tickets for Speedweeks events, excluding the DAYTONA 500 in which Denny Hamlin goes for a record third straight win, are still available. Fans wishing to attend are encouraged to quickly secure their seats. Excluding the DAYTONA 500, children 12 and under are FREE in the 100 level seating and $10 in all other reserved seating. Tickets start at $49 for adults for the Busch Clash, Thursday’s Bluegreen Vacations Duel At DAYTONA, Friday’s Nextera Energy 250 and Saturday’s doubleheader featuring the Beef. It’s What’s For Dinner. ® 300 for the NASCAR Xfinity Series and the Lucas Oil 200 Driven by General Tire for the ARCA Menards Series.
All Speedweeks events will be conducted in accordance with enhanced safety protocols and procedures to provide a safe environment for guests, NASCAR competitors, employees and the local community. All guests will be screened before entering the facility and will be required to wear face coverings while maintaining six feet social distancing throughout their visit.
For a schedule of on-track activities and protocols, logo onto www.DAYTONA500.com. Fans can stay connected with Daytona International Speedway on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram for the latest speedway news.
About Daytona International Speedway
Daytona International Speedway is the home of The Great American Race – the DAYTONA 500. Though the season-opening NASCAR Cup Series event garners most of the attention – as well as the largest audience in motorsports - the approximately 500-acre motorsports complex boasts the most diverse schedule of racing on the globe, thus earning it the title of World Center of Racing. In addition to eight major weekends of racing activity, rarely a week goes by that the Speedway grounds are not used for events that include civic and social gatherings, car shows, photo shoots, production vehicle testing and police motorcycle training.
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