Daytona Beach, FL (SportsNetwork.com) - Following a near six-and-a-half-hour delay for rain, the 56th running of the Daytona 500 is underway again.
A shower moved over Daytona International Speedway about 40 minutes after the green flag waved for the start of Sunday's prestigious race at 1:30 p.m. ET. NASCAR displayed the red flag when 38 laps had been completed, as the field came to a stop on pit road.
The National Weather Service had issued a severe thunderstorm warning as well as a tornado warning for the area during the late afternoon. The rain stopped shortly before sunset, and NASCAR's new track-drying system, the Air Titan, moved onto this 2.5-mile superspeedway. The Air Titan was designed to shorten the amount of track-drying time.
The field returned to the track at 8:35 p.m., running eight laps under caution before the green flag was displayed again at 8:53 p.m. It was the longest rain delay in Daytona 500 history. Kyle Busch held the lead when the race resumed.
"It's a totally different scenario now," Busch said. "It's under the lights at night, and everybody is going to have everything that they need. It's going to be no holds barred on to the end. We'll see how it goes."
There is a possibility of more showers on the way here.