This season marks yet another highly anticipated Sunoco Rookie of the Year class debut – and when it comes to the Daytona 500, a couple extra first-timers are on the list.
Richard Childress Racing’s Daniel Hemric (No 8 Chevrolet), JTG Daugherty Racing’s Ryan Preece (No. 47 Chevrolet) and Front Row Motorsports’ Matt Tifft (No. 36 Ford) will highlight the full season Sunoco Rookie of the Year competition. Hemric finished runner-up in the 2018 NASCAR Xfinity Series championship while driving for Childress. Tifft finished sixth in the Xfinity Series last year. Preece, a two-time Xfinity Series race winner, makes his full-time Cup debut after five starts in 2015.
Of the newcomers, Hemric earned the best starting position in Thursday’s Gander RV Duel races to set the Daytona 500 starting lineup. All three of the rookies are in the first Duel. Hemric will start third, Preece will start 15th and Tifft rolls off 18th in the 21-car field.
None of the three have ever won a race at Daytona International Speedway. (NASCAR PR)