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Daytona 500 purse a record $19 million

- Associated Press - Wednesday, February 1, 2012

DAYTONA BEACH, FLA. (AP) - The Daytona 500 will boast a record purse of more than $19 million, and the winner of NASCAR's biggest race is guaranteed a minimum $1.4 million.

Daytona International Speedway also announced Wednesday a $200,000 bonus for the driver leading at the halfway point of the race.

The "Daytona 500 Mid-Race Leader Award" will not be automatically awarded if the race is under caution at lap 100. The bonus will then be rolled over and paid to the driver leading the race at the completion of the fifth consecutive green flag lap following the caution.

Daytona president Joie Chitwood believes the bonus is incentive for drivers to race up front and not lay back in the Feb. 26 season-opening race.

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