Trump named Daytona 500 grand marshal, will give 'start your engines' command

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President Trump is taking part in this year’s Daytona 500.

Not as a driver, but as grand marshal, which means he gets to give the “start your engines” command to the 40 entrants in the Great American Race.

Trump hosted NASCAR Champion Martin Truex Jr.'s team at The White House. (Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images)

The only other time a sitting president attended the race as grand marshal was when George W. Bush came in 2004, the year Dale Earnhardt Jr. won his first 500.

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Earnhardt was grand marshal in 2018 and will be on the stand this Sunday to wave the green flag as honorary starter.

Trump was endorsed in 2016 by former NASCAR CEO Brian France Jr. and has hosted series champions Joey Logano and Martin Truex Jr. at the White House. Trump also gave NASCAR team owner Roger Penske the Presidential Medal of Freedom last year.

And while the president won’t be getting on the track, his name will. Just not on Sunday.

(Mike Harmon Racing)

Joe Nemechek will be driving a Mike Harmon Racing car in the NASCAR Xfinity Series race on Saturday, sponsored by the Patriots PAC of America, that will have Trump/Pence 2020 logos on it.

Fox News Channel's John Roberts reported Friday that the White House is in discussions to have Trump take a lap of the track in the presidential limousine, known as the Beast, before the race.

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This story has been updated to correct that President Bush was also a grand marshal.