DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — Three-time Grammy Award winner Darius Rucker will perform a pre-race concert before the Daytona 500 in February.
It will be Rucker’s fourth appearance at Daytona International Speedway and first at the “Great American Race,” which will again serve as NASCAR’s Cup Series season opener. The 500-mile race is scheduled for Feb. 16.
Track president Chip Wile says Rucker’s appeal “is massive, encompassing fans of both rock and country music, making him a perfect fit for fans” at Daytona.
Rucker served as frontman for Hootie & the Blowfish until venturing into country music as a solo artist in 2008. He has since released five albums and notched nine No. 1 singles on country radio, earning him induction into the famed Grand Ole Opry in 2012.
Hootie & the Blowfish returned to the road in 2019 for their Group Therapy Tour and released “Imperfect Circle” last month, their first new album in nearly 15 years.
Rucker twice performed at Daytona before the Coke Zero Sugar 400 in July (2002, 2010). Hootie & The Blowfish took part in the Dale Earnhardt Tribute Concert in 2003.
JTG Daugherty finalizes driver, crew chief lineup
After adding veteran and two-time winning NASCAR Cup Series driver Ricky Stenhouse Jr. to its stable in October, JTG Daugherty Racing finalized its driver and crew chief lineup with an announcement on Monday.
Stenhouse will move to the team’s No. 47 Chevrolet, which was driven by rookie Ryan Preece in 2019. Moving over from Roush Fenway Racing alongside Stenhouse is crew chief Brian Pattie. The pair won twice together in 2017 at Talladega and Daytona to make the Cup playoffs.
Preece slides over to the team’s No. 37 Chevrolet to replace the outgoing Chris Buescher, who left for RFR to occupy Stenhouse’s old No. 17 Ford. Crew chief Trent Owens will stay put with the No. 37 team. Preece posted a career-best finish of third at Talladega in the spring.
LaJoie returning to Go Fas Racing
Fourth-year Cup Series driver Corey LaJoie announced on his podcast Tuesday morning that he will return to Go Fas Racing’s No. 32 Ford in 2020. He will have a new crew chief, however, as veteran Randy Cox has departed the team for personal reasons.
LaJoie ran his first fulltime schedule with the team in 2019, racking up his first two career top 10 finishes at Daytona in July and at Talladega in October. His sixth- and seventh-place finishes were the two best results in team history.