Starting Line-up, Weather, and More: All You Should Know About the 2021 NASCAR Busch Clash

Published 02/09/2021, 7:44 AM EST
MARTINSVILLE, VIRGINIA – NOVEMBER 01: Kurt Busch, driver of the #1 Monster Energy Chevrolet, Kyle Busch, driver of the #18 M&M’s Toyota, and Cole Custer, driver of the #41 HaasTooling.com Ford, race during the NASCAR Cup Series Xfinity 500 at Martinsville Speedway in Martinsville, Virginia. (Photo by Brian Lawdermilk/Getty Images)


21 cars, 35 laps, and one mission – to win the 2021 NASCAR Busch Clash. The weather looks perfectly set up for a Tuesday evening of racing under the glowing lights at the renowned Daytona International Speedway.

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Searing through the 3.61 miles road course portion of the circuit, drivers will have 35 laps to emerge champion of the invitation-only NASCAR exhibition event. A caution will come in at Lap 15, following which the frenetic segment of the remaining 20 laps will take place.

Viewers in the United States can watch the live broadcast from Daytona on the Fox Sports 1 (FS1) channel, with the coverage beginning from 6 PM Eastern Time (ET). The Busch Clash is set to be green flagged at 7:14 PM ET.

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Ryan Blaney will start in pole as Chase Elliott lines up in sixth in the 2021 NASCAR Busch Clash

The starting grid lineup, decided by draws this time around, sees Team Penske’s Ryan Blaney start in pole position for the event. Interestingly, both Busch brothers, Kyle and Kurt, will start together on Row 8 of the grid.

2020 Cup Series champion Chase Elliott begins the race in sixth, lining up alongside Stewart-Haas Racing’s Cole Custer, who enters a sophomore year in NASCAR. Last year’s Busch Clash winner Erik Jones starts the event in ninth on Row 5.

Aric Almirola has the misfortune of starting the race in last place but will look to gain track positions with the passage of laps. Hence, the draw has certainly shuffled the pack around, with an entertaining event in prospect for racing fans.

What happened in the 2020 edition of the invitational event?

After Ryan Newman had drawn top spot in last year’s Busch Clash, the expectation was that he would go on also win the event. However, following strong surges of pace from Jones, who built his way up from his starting position of 12th.

DARLINGTON, SOUTH CAROLINA – AUGUST 31: Ryan Newman, driver of the #6 Oscar Mayer/Velveeta Ford, stands on the grid during qualifying for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Bojangles’ Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway in Darlington, South Carolina. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

The race was also marred by some crashes between Laps 70-80, taking it into an overtime finish with a contested figure of 88 laps. Jones claimed the lead in the final lap and secured the victory in the end.

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Therefore, unpredictability is the name of the game in the Busch Clash, as another edition gets underway on February 9.

Can Erik Jones retain his crown again? We will have to wait and watch.

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MORE – REVEALED! Chase Elliott’s Classy New Helmets for the 2021 NASCAR Cup Series Season

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Bhargav Gopal

927 articles

Hailing from Bengaluru, Bhargav is an F1 and NASCAR author for EssentiallySports. He is a huge fan of Max Verstappen and Red Bull Racing. Bhargav also has an MBA in Sports Management from the Symbiosis School of Sports Sciences, Pune.

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