It's an annual event that draws hundreds of journalists from across the country to set the tone for the upcoming season.

Jeff Gordon called it " an exciting time of year," because it essentially signals the green flag for a new campaign.

But drivers know what they're in for when they step into the Daytona International Speedway facilities -- a long day.

Gordon and teammates Kasey Kahne and Dale Earnhardt Jr. took part in the afternoon session of the event, while Jimmie Johnson opted for the morning portion.

We thought we'd follow Johnson throughout Media Day to provide a better feel for what the production is really like.

5 a.m.: Johnson's alarm sounds. A flight to Florida awaits, so he brews a cup of coffee and prepares for the day. His bags were packed the night before.

5:30 a.m.: Casey Mears arrives to pick up Johnson, and the two head to the airport to hop on a plane bound for Daytona Beach, Florida.

7:15 a.m.: Not long after the sunrise, Johnson arrives in Daytona and makes his way directly to his motorhome. At this point, just enough time remains for a quick shower, shave and breakfast before getting Media Day started.

8 a.m.: Johnson's schedule begins with a 90-minute tour from partner to partner. From MRN radio to PRN radio, ESPN radio, Fox Sports 1, Sprint and plenty more, Johnson spends seven minutes with each group before moving on to the next one.

"It's just a long day, and we're racers. We want to sit in the race car, we want to burn some tires up, we want to burn some fuel up. So being in a building and having structured work is just hard on us all."

Jimmie Johnson

9:30 a.m.: The fun is just getting started as Johnson heads to the main Media Day headquarters, and more rapid-fire interviews begin with a stop at the SiriusXM Radio booth.

9:40 a.m.: Three consecutive on-camera segments kick off when Johnson spends 10 minutes with Marty Smith and ESPN.

9:50 a.m.: Fox Sports 1's Race Hub is the next 10-minute segment.

10 a.m.: For, Johnson chats about fatherhood in addition to a few on-track tidbits.

10:10 a.m.: Five more minutes with is up next, though this portion is not on camera. It's a Reddit AMA with the NASCAR social media team.

10:15 a.m.: Meeting with dozens of gathered print media is next on the docket. The media members form a semicircle around Johnson, who takes a seat in front of a Daytona 500 backdrop. He discusses everything from Gordon's final season to his quest for a seventh title, the future of the sport and even Tiger Woods' leave of absence from golf.

10:35 a.m.: The hat dance. Still photography is up next, and that means posing for photos with NBC, Goodyear, Getty Images and many more. Part of that also means putting on dozens of different hats to represent various partners.

"In the back of your mind, you're like, man, I know Photoshop is really cool and works, and they could do this easily," Johnson laughs. "But it's just part of the process. You know you've come to Media Day and you're just going to dedicate a full day to the broadcast partners so we all look good."

11:25 a.m.: A walk along the red carpet awaits, as dozens of cameras -- and four separate stops with sets of microphones attached to stands -- wait to interview the six-time champion.

12 p.m.: A quick trip back to the motorhome allows just enough time for a breather and a bite to eat before it's back to business.

1 p.m.: Some of the coolest shots of the day come at the FOX shoot. Lights, decorations and even some pyrotechnics get involved as Johnson does his part for the FOX NASCAR broadcasts.

2:50 p.m.: The last stop of the day comes in the form of a call-in to Jay Mohr's show. Johnson interacts with the host of the 2014 Sprint Cup Series Awards to wrap up Media Day.

3 p.m.: With his obligations at an end, Johnson finally has a chance to relax. Instead, he goes for a five-mile run and a 20-mile bike ride.

"We'll go have some fun on a nice, warm bike ride," Johnson said during his stop on the red carpet. "It's been hard to get miles because it's been so cold at home. Then chill out and get ready and go racing Saturday night."

Just a day in the life of a six-time Sprint Cup champion on NASCAR Media Day.

For more photos from Thursday's Media Day, click here.