Luke Combs has been selected as this year's pre-race entertainment for the Daytona 500 next month. The country star will perform a live show ahead of the 63rd running of The Great American Race, marking his first live concert since the coronavirus pandemic began.
"I grew up watching the NASCAR race every Sunday with my granddad; that was our thing," Combs said in a statement. "I never could have imagined back then that I’d be playing the Daytona 500 one day, so this is super awesome and is something I’m really looking forward to."
"The tradition of the Daytona 500 Pre-Race Show has been an incredibly popular hit with race fans," Daytona International Speedway President Chip Wile added. “Luke has been one of the most influential country music stars over the last few years and his fan appeal is incredible. It’s a bonus, too, that he loves our sport. He will help get another thrilling DAYTONA 500, as well as a new NASCAR season, off to an exciting start."
Combs' upcoming performance is NASCAR's first major live performance since PitBull and Blake Shelton performed in the final race in early March 2020. In an email to the Associated Press, Combs said that he "can't wait" to feel the energy of a live show again.
"It’s the thing that allows the fan to be connected to the artist in a very intimate way, something that you can’t really explain," he continued. "Live music is a way for us to be able to disconnect from everything else, and just be there in the moment. The pandemic has definitely hurt our industry as a whole, but I personally just really miss being on stage every night with the guys and the fans."
"It’s why I do what I do," Combs added. "When I said ‘I miss the road, I miss my band’ in my song ‘Six Feet Apart,’ I really meant it. It’s hard being away from (the fans) and I can’t wait to get back out there."
The pre-race show and Daytona 500 will be attended by a limited number of fans. Be sure to tune in to FOX on February 14 at 1 p.m. ET to watch Combs' performance.
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