Peyton Manning to drive pace car at Daytona 500

Oct 25, 2017; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Former NFL player Peyton Manning attends game two of the 2017 World Series between the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Houston Astros at Dodger Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

On Sunday, the Great American Race will be led by a familiar face in Broncos Country as two-time Super Bowl winning quarterback and Nationwide spokesperson Peyton Manning will serve as the honorary pace car driver for the 60th annual Daytona 500.

Manning will pilot the Toyota Camry XSE, pacing the 40-car field prior to taking the green flag on Sunday, as NASCAR opens it’s season with it’s 60th year at the heralded 2.5-mile, signature high-banked tri-oval for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series.

“Serving as the Honorary Pace Car Driver will be a truly unique and exciting experience,” Manning told NASCAR.

“I want to thank NASCAR, Daytona International Speedway and Nationwide for making this possible. I’m really looking forward to race day.”

The former Super Bowl Champion will lead the reigning NASCAR champion out to start the race, as Martin Truex Jr. and the Denver-based Furniture Row racing team look to defend their title as NASCAR’s best.

The Furniture Row team was the 26th fastest car in Sunday’s Daytona 500 pole qualifying, but pole qualifying only locked in the front row for Sunday’s Daytona 500. The remaining line-up will be determined after Thursday’s Cam-Am Duels, 60-lap qualifying race.

Alex Bowman, who took over the #88 car for retiring Dale Earnhardt Jr., won the pole on Sunday driving under Manning’s endorser, Nationwide.

Last year’s winner of the Daytona 500, Kurt Busch, will start out of the #9 position after qualifying over the weekend.

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