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Teams can focus on race setups in '05

Updated: February 10, 2005, 8:14 PM ET
Associated Press

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- Nextel Cup drivers are looking forward to working more on race setups now that NASCAR has given the top teams a free pass into the field.

Beginning with the Daytona 500, the top 35 teams in car owner points from 2004 will make the lineup. After five races, 2005 points will determine the automatic berths.

So, top teams will no longer need to spend much time on qualifying setups. Other factors, for the most part qualifying speeds, will fill the last eight ...

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