NASCAR has confirmed they will allow Daniel Suarez to compete in the Advance Auto Parts Clash at Daytona International Speedway (Feb. 18, FS1).
Suarez has replaced Carl Edwards in the No. 19 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota Camry. NASCAR came to the decision after it was determined the team was already in the advanced stages of preparing the car and sponsorship for the race.
The rookie will be the first Mexican-born driver to compete in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series, earning a spot in the 75-lap exhibition event based on Edwards’ six poles during the 2016 season.
Clint Bowyer, who is taking over Tony Stewart’s No. 14 Ford Fusion, is still ineligible for the event due to Stewart-Haas Racing’s prior knowledge of Stewart’s retirement, compared to the Edwards’ surprise departure from JGR.
Alex Bowman will be the substitute driver for Dale Earnhardt Jr. in the No. 88 Hendrick Motorsports Chevy, qualifying for the event after winning the pole in the fall race at Phoenix International Raceway last year.
Here is the complete list of those eligible to race in the Clash at Daytona:
2016 pole winners: Greg Biffle, Alex Bowman, Kurt Busch, Kyle Busch, Austin Dillon, Carl Edwards (replaced by Daniel Suarez), Chase Elliott, Denny Hamlin, Kevin Harvick, Jimmie Johnson, Matt Kenseth, Brad Keselowski, Joey Logano and Martin Truex Jr.
Former Advance Auto Parts Clash race winners: Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Tony Stewart
Former Daytona 500 pole winners: Danica Patrick
2016 Chase drivers: Chris Buescher, Kyle Larson and Jamie McMurray