Snowball Derby – Qualifying Procedure

The above photograph features Kyle Busch and Johanna Long. Could we see a repeat of this on Sunday at the Snowball Derby?


The Snowball Derby is often called the Daytona 500 of short track racing.

A lot like the Great American Race, the Snowball is difficult to access. But unlike Daytona, the 2010 Snowball Derby has 58 entries gunning for 37 starting spots. So getting into the Snowball Derby is no simple task. But there is guaranteed starting spots for exceptional race winners.

For example, the previous race winner receives an automatic berth into this year’s race. If defending race winner Kyle Busch manages to appear in Pensacola before Friday qualifying, he’ll have one of the guaranteed 37 starting positions.

The rest of the procedure is better described by Jamie Secola of the Pensacola News Journal.

“The top 30 qualifying times among 58 drivers entered will make Sunday’s field. Each driver gets two qualifying laps around the half-mile, high banked oval. Their fastest lap of the two is their qualifying time.

Those who don’t qualify will try and finish in the top four of a 50-lap, last-chance race on Saturday afternoon. There will be other provisional positions, based on points by top Blizzard Series finishers. Last year, a field of 37 cars started the 2009 Snowball Derby.”

The Blizzard Series is a five-race Snowball Derby Qualifying Series held during the summer in Pensacola. This year’s champion is 15-year old Chase Elliott, son of former Cup Series Champion Bill Elliott. Elliott also finished seventh in last season’s event.


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