Daytona's twin qualifying races move to prime time

Twin qualifying races for Daytona 500 moving to prime time beginning in 2014

Associated Press
Daytona's twin qualifying races move to prime time
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Tony Stewart drives out on the track during practice for the NASCAR Daytona 500 Sprint Cup Series auto race at Daytona International Speedway, Wednesday, Feb. 20, 2013, in Daytona Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux)

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (AP) -- The twin qualifying races for the Daytona 500 are moving to prime time.

The 150-mile qualifiers, called the Budweiser Duel races and historically run in daylight, will be held under the lights beginning in 2014.

The races are scheduled for Thursday, Feb. 20, and will be televised by FOX Sports.

Daytona International Speedway President Joie Chitwood III says moving the races will "add another dimension" to Speedweeks.

He adds that "to earn a coveted starting spot in the Daytona 500, the stars of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series will have to perform under the lights and in front of a prime-time audience."

Speedweeks will have four prime-time races next season: the exhibition Sprint Unlimited, the twin qualifiers and the Truck Series opener.

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