On January 23rd, 2017, NASCAR begins a new era in how points and races will be run for all three national divisions. These changes are meant to help the fans see more action on the track from the television standpoint. Experts project that fans will see 20% more laps under green in this new format.
Drivers, team owners, and other industry stakeholders are excited about the changes coming down NASCAR’s pipeline.
“I believe this is part of the natural evolution of our sport as we continue to enhance the product on the race track.The enhancements are a result of unprecedented collaboration between the teams, NASCAR, broadcast partners and drivers, and in direct response to what the fans have expressed a desire for. Stage style racing has a strong history throughout many levels of motorsports, and I’m personally excited to watch as the new strategies play out during the upcoming season,” said Jack Roush of Roush Fenway Racing.
“Today’s announcement will take NASCAR competition to new levels beginning with Speedweeks,” Daytona International Speedway President Chip Wile said. “Race fans will see more can’t-miss moments on the track as every lap of every race is going to impact championships for all three national series. The enhanced format also heightens the importance of the Cam-Duel At Daytona as the 150-mile qualifying races will now determine both starting positions for ‘The Great American Race’ but also award points that will impact the championship. Today’s news is the product of the industry working together as well as listening to the fans,” said Chip While, President of Daytona International Speedway, who was part of industry discussions.
"All of us here at Talladega Superspeedway are extremely excited about the competition changes announced by NASCAR," said Grant Lynch, Chairman of Talladega Superspeedway. "Every heart-pounding lap here – with three and four-wide racing at 200 mph – is going to mean something for every driver. We look forward to hosting our races this May and October with these changes, as they will provide even more winning moments for multiple drivers in these segments. The format will ultimately tie the season together from the start of the Daytona 500 all the way to the Championship at Homestead with better racing."
“Every stakeholder group in our sport has worked together to take NASCAR racing and make it even better. Spectacular sports events are driven by dramatic moments and this sets the stage for 2017 to be one of the greatest seasons in NASCAR history. The new format is going to pay off for NASCAR fans. We looked at all these decisions and all these different opportunites from the eyes of a fan. We all really take that to heart. This isn't just our job. We love the sport and this is for the fans,” said Marcus Smith, President and CEO of Speedway Motorsports Inc. and General Manager of Charlotte Motor Speedway, who was also part of the discussions.
Many Drivers went to Twitter to express their support of the new system.
— Ty Dillon (@tydillon) January 24, 2017
Excited about the new @NASCAR format! Drive hard every lap, sounds good to me!! ?— Daniel Suárez (@Daniel_SuarezG) January 24, 2017
Digging the new @NASCAR racing format. Going to be interesting to see how these stage points effect the way the teams race the entire race.— Clint Bowyer (@ClintBowyer) January 24, 2017