Daytona 500 facing possible delays as rainy, cold weekend expected in Central, Northeast Florida

Don’t think you will be able to escape this weekend’s rain by heading south of Jacksonville. Our wet weather will be heavier in central Florida as a Gulf system threatens to drench the state.

This downpour could dampen outdoor plans, lead to flooding, and potentially impact the Daytona 500 if it doesn’t move south in time by Sunday.

A brewing batch of rain in the central Gulf of Mexico will sweep moisture across Florida as it tracks east on Saturday and Sunday. Rain is expected to be steady Saturday with 1.5 to 3 inches in Northeast Florida but upwards of over 3 inches in Daytona Beach through Saturday night.

The Daytona 500, scheduled for 2:30 p.m. on Sunday at Daytona International Speedway, could face weather delays if the rain lingers. If the storm moves faster than expected, the race might avoid delays. However, the speedway is equipped with lights, allowing for a nighttime race if dry conditions return later on Sunday.

Severe thunderstorms are unlikely due to the lack of instability and cooler air across the state, temperatures will be significantly lower than average, dropping by 10-15 degrees Fahrenheit in central Florida.

So it’s not just damp and soggy, but cold as highs stay in the mid to upper 50s along the east coast from Daytona to Jacksonville.

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