Tha Sports Junkies 101

NASCAR Announces Sweeping Points And Race Format Changes


NASCAR held a press conference Monday evening regarding massive changes to the points point and race format structure. The move affects all three NASCAR National Series (CUP, XFINITY, and Trucks) and the race formats in all three.

The sanctioning body will now divide each race into three segments. The top-10 finishers of the first two stages will be awarded additional championship points and the winner of the first two stages of each race will receive one playoff point. The third stage will reward full race points with the race winner following the final stage will now receive 40 points, second-place will receive 35, third-place 34, fourth-place 33, and so on. Additionally, the race winner will additionally earn 5 bonus points towards the playoffs. Finally, NASCAR will work with broadcasters to reduce commercials and missed green flag laps under the new format.

“Simply put, this will make our great racing even better,” said Brian France, NASCAR chairman and CEO. “I’m proud of the unprecedented collaboration from our industry stakeholders, each of whom had a common goal – strengthening the sport for our fans. This is an enhancement fully rooted in teamwork, and the result will be an even better product every single week.”

Additionally, the NASCAR “Chase” is no more and is now simply called a Playoff. The round and number of races during it will not change. But, playoff points earned will be retained after each round of the playoff with the exception of the “Final 4” at Homestead, where points will be straight up. Playoff seeding and reseeding however will not change and remain the same as the past 3 years. Qualifying for the playoff is also no different from in the past and a points win earns it first, followed by top points finishers.

“These are enhancements that the NASCAR fan has long sought, and the entire industry has worked hard to develop a better racing format for our fans,” said Steve O’Donnell, NASCAR executive vice president and chief racing development officer. “This format puts a premium on every victory and every in-race position over the course of the season. Each point can eventually result in winning or losing a championship.”

Other noteworthy changes include the crowning of a regular season champion, which will be crowned at Richmond (26th race) and the removal of the controversial “Caution Clock” in the Camping World Truck Series due to the segment format. The Can-Am Duels at Daytona will also reward the top 10 of each race points.