KANSAS CITY, Kan. (Jan. 24, 2017) – NASCAR, in collaboration with industry stakeholders, announced an enhanced competition format that will be implemented in all three of its national series – the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series, the NASCAR XFINITY Series and the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.
Increasing the sense of urgency and emphasizing aggressive racing and strategy, the race format will deliver more dramatic moments over the course of an entire race and season, with playoff point incentives on the line throughout.
“This is an exciting announcement for our fans and our sport,” said Kansas Speedway President Patrick Warren. “I’m looking forward to seeing the thrilling on-track action as drivers compete for the segment wins and additional bonus points as they compete for the championship in their respective series. These changes are all about delivering what our fans want - thrilling on track competition where every lap of every race matters.”
The enhanced format consists of the following:
Races will now consist of three stages, with championship implications in each stage.
The top-10 finishers of the first two stages will be awarded additional championship points.
The winner of the first two stages of each race will receive one playoff point, and the race winner will receive five playoff points. Each playoff point will be added to his or her reset total following race No. 26, if that competitor makes the playoffs.
All playoff points will carry through to the end of the third round of the playoffs (Round of 8), with the Championship 4 racing straight-up at Homestead-Miami Speedway for the title.
Championship points following the first two stages will be awarded on a descending scale, with the stage winner receiving 10 points, second receiving 9 points, and so on.
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.
“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.”
NASCAR also announced a playoff bonus structure that will see the regular season points leader honored as the regular season champion, earning 15 playoff points that will be added to the driver’s playoff reset of 2,000. In addition, the top-10 drivers in points leading into the playoffs will receive playoff points, with second place receiving 10 playoff points, third place will earn 8 points, fourth place will receive 7 points, and so on. All playoff points will carry through to the end of the Round of 8.
“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.”
Racing returns to Kansas Speedway on Friday, May 12 with the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Toyota Tundra 250, and Saturday, May 13 with the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Go Bowling 400 under the lights. In October, the Hollywood Casino 400 is an elimination race in the playoffs on Sunday, Oct. 22. The NASCAR XFINITY Series Kansas Lottery 300 will again be a part of the playoffs for the NASCAR XFINITY Series on Saturday, Oct. 21, while the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards will wrap up their season on Friday, Oct. 20. Tickets are currently on sale by calling 866.460.RACE (7223) or online at www.kansasspeedway.com.
General parking is always free at Kansas Speedway and fans can bring in one 14x14x14-inch soft-sided cooler with their favorite food and beverages.
Fans can follow Kansas Speedway on Facebook at www.facebook.com/kansasspeedway or follow us on Twitter (@kansasspeedway).