Daytona International Speedway to host historic ‘soccer fest’

Daytona International Speedway, home of NASCAR’s iconic Daytona 500 race, has detailed plans to stage a historic football event at the venue next year.

The inaugural Daytona Soccer Fest is scheduled to be held at the venue on July 3-4, 2021 and has been billed as a “two-day multi-sensory entertainment experience for the entire family”.

Daytona International Speedway announced the event in association with Latin American sports and entertainment company Torneos. Specific details of the event have not been revealed but it is set to feature “world-class” football and high-profile music performers.

It will mark the first time that a professional football pitch has been built into the infield at Daytona International Speedway, which has a capacity of 101,000. It will also be the first time a NASCAR racetrack has hosted a professional football match.

Professional teams from North and South America are set to take part in the event, which will also feature concerts, ride-alongs, carnival rides, water slides, a fishing tournament and an esports competition. Daytona Soccer Fest will culminate in a fireworks display to mark the July 4 holiday.

Daytona Soccer Fest has been organised as the venue prepares for its first year without staging a NASCAR race near the July 4 holiday. This year’s race will instead be held in August, with Indianapolis Motor Speedway to host the July 4 event.

Daytona International Speedway president Chip Wile said: “The inaugural Daytona Soccer Fest will be a groundbreaking event. We’re always looking to add new events to our already busy calendar and to be able to host a professional international soccer match in the tri-oval along with other family fun-filled activities on the July 4th Weekend is an incredible opportunity to showcase our state-of-the-art facility.”

Torneos chief executive Ignacio Galarza added: “We are truly honoured by this partnership with Daytona and we are very pleased to bring our 37 years´ experience and leadership in sports and entertainment to this festival. It will certainly be a unique experience. We will present world-class soccer to the growing American fans in this amazing setting.”

Local production of the event will be led by Onside Entertainment. Tickets will go on sale on July 4.

Image: Daytona Soccer Fest