Spoiler alert: they only take left turns.
Crazy, right? So is watching the Great American Race without these must-know facts and superstitions to occupy your mind so you don't get distracted by thinking you have what it takes to be a NASCAR driver just because you've had three cups of coffee before noon.
The Daytona 500, also known to many as "The Great American Race" is without a doubt the biggest NASCAR race of the year. Comparatively, it's relatable to the Super Bowl of the NFL, the World Cup of Soccer and the favorite mug of your morning coffee — it just wouldn't be the same without it.
With the first wave of the green flag in 1959, Daytona has cemented itself in NASCAR history forever and boasts one of the largest outdoor stadiums in the U.S. that goes well beyond NASCAR including hosting country music festivals, motorcycle shows and more, hosting fans of all backgrounds from all over the world.
With all the history behind it also comes a little superstition. You know—like avoiding walking under ladders and that morning ritual that we can't leave home without, which some of us discretely refer to as "just having a cup of coffee." Whatever you choose to believe in, there's a chance you probably can't relate to some of the strangest superstitions in NASCAR history.
1. For starters, $50 bills are believed to be bad luck as legend has it that two $50 bills were found in Joe Weatherly's pocket after he died in a fatal crash at Riverside Speedway in 1964. Lucky for you, $50 gets you enough coffee to run a Daytona 500, let alone drive it. Plus, you get free shipping–so what's to lose?
2. Next, there's the superstition that the color green is bad luck in all of motorsports because of issues that drivers like Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Danica Patrick have had in green cars. Know what's not bad luck? Black. Next time you have a coffee skip the cream and sugar and see for yourself.
3. Lastly, there's the superstition that facial hair contributes to a driver's success and shaving on race day is forbidden. Maybe that's why Death Wish partnered with Anthony Alfredo for the Daytona 500, or maybe it's because he heard about a little thing we like to call "performance enhancing coffee."
Want to see it in action for yourself? Tune into this year's running of the Daytona 500 to see if Anthony Alfredo makes the field of 40 and keep an eye out for other drivers that seem to be going a little faster than normal or might be quicker to avoid potential wrecks to guess who else might be sipping on some Death Wish Coffee behind the wheel.
Who knows, with a little bit of luck and a whole lot of superstition, maybe you'll find yourself behind the wheel at Daytona one day. Until then, keep an eye out for our upcoming collaboration with driver Anthony Alfredo and a behind-the-scenes look at what it takes to qualify for the Great American Race.
[Featured Image Credit: Tim Trad via Unsplash]