DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — Daytona International Speedway is getting new pavement.
The old pavement doesn't intend to go quietly, however.
Just as the speedway was preparing to host its first NASCAR race since February's pothole-plagued Daytona 500, it faced a startling reality.
The asphalt problem, thought corrected until the track can be repaved after this weekend, decided to return just in time for tonight's Coke Zero 400.
DIS released a statement early Friday indicating a section of the track approximately 1 foot by 41/2 feet was repaired in Turn 2 as a "precautionary measure" following Thursday's track activity. The problem was discovered during an inspection by the track's engineers.
The new troubled section is located adjacent to the area which required more than a 21/2-hour delay to repair during the Daytona 500.
Fans camped near the trouble spot in Turns1 and 2 said track crews made multiple visits to the area throughout the day Thursday.
While no asphalt came up as it did during the 500, the fans said the area was "visibly cracking."
"The surface out there, I know everybody has zeroed in on that," NASCAR chairman Brian France said. "The track has found an issue, but we believe we've fixed it."
Track activity proceeded without incident Friday except rain that halted Sprint Cup qualifying.
Points leader Kevin Harvick, who won the series' most recent restrictor-plate race April 25 at Talladega, Ala., will start on the pole as the lineup was set by the NASCAR rulebook.
Four-time reigning series champion Jimmie Johnson will start second and Kyle Busch third.
"It's going to be tested, but the precautions we are taking make us confident we are going to have a great Coke Zero 400," track president Robin Braig said.
"It is the only area on the track where we've seen any deterioration."