By JENNA FRYER
AP Auto Racing Writer
IndyCar driver Conor Daly would accept a last-minute Daytona 500 ride if offered the chance to enter “The Great American Race.”
Helio Castroneves last week ruled out trying to make NASCAR‘s season-opening race because the four-time Indianapolis 500 winner did not believe there was enough time to prepare for the Feb. 19 event. Castroneves, after a ride failed to materialize with Trackhouse Racing, entered discussions with the team owned by Floyd Mayweather.
Daly, meanwhile, made his NASCAR Cup Series debut last October driving for Mayweather’s team. Daly indicated Wednesday that talks with The Money Team Racing about the Daytona 500 opened after Castroneves pulled out.
“Who knows what will happen in the next couple days or weeks, I guess,” he said. “If that opportunity were to come up, I chatted with a young man by the name of Helio Castroneves earlier, and I think for him an opportunity like that could probably come about really anytime.
“But for me, I don’t know if an opportunity like that would come again. If there is a chance, I feel like I can’t not do it, or not try to do it at least.”
TMT last year made the Daytona 500 with driver Kaz Grala in the first NASCAR race for Mayweather’s team. Grala finished 26th.
Daly’s only NASCAR experience on an oval was in the Truck Series. His Cup race in the No. 50 was on The Roval at Charlotte Motor Speedway, a hybrid road course that uses a portion of the oval. He finished 34th.
“Really cool to get to do that and be a part of the NASCAR Cup Series and hopefully obviously shine some light on the IndyCar Series, as well,” Daly said.