Checkers or Wreckers.
This is the one race on the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series schedule where no fan is able to tell you who finished second and on Tuesday, NASCAR announced a new series of rules to the annual All-Star Race. The rules, according to the press release, will add emphasis on finishing well in each of the segments that airs Saturday, May 18th from Charlotte Motor Speedway.
The race will still be broken into four 20 lap segments and a final 10 lap segment, but instead of being based on the finishing order of the fourth segment or how the driver comes off pit road between segments, the final 10 laps will be determined by the driver’s average finish in the first four segments.
Aside from the new segment rules, their is a new incentive to win. An extra $1 million will be driven to the driver if he or she wins all five segments. The race will still feature one mandatory four-tire pit stop.
As you read this something is telling me that you’re asking why the changes. Last year, Jimmie Johnson laid back during the middle of the race. He won the first segment, which ensured the No. 48 crew that they’d lead the field down pit road for the final segment. So for the middle segments, Johnson drove around to keep his Lowe’s Chevrolet safe.
The NASCAR Sprint Cup All-Star race is definitely one crew chief’s tell their driver to go all out and just bring home the steering wheel if necessary. $2 million dollars could bring some fantastic racing.
The eligibility criteria for the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race remain the same:
· Race winners from 2012 and 2013: Matt Kenseth, Denny Hamlin, Tony Stewart, Brad Keselowski, Ryan Newman, Greg Biffle, Kyle Busch, Jimmie Johnson, Kasey Kahne, Joey Logano, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Clint Bowyer, Jeff Gordon, Marcos Ambrose, Kevin Harvick.
· All-Star winners the past 10 years: Carl Edwards, Kurt Busch and Mark Martin.
· Drivers who are past NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champions in the last 10 years
· The top two finishers in the Sprint Showdown, the 40-lap race that precedes the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race
· The top Sprint Fan Vote driver who finishes on the lead lap of the Showdown and whose car is in “raceable” condition as determined by the series director