No More “Chase”, Rest Breaks During Races…Here’s NASCAR’s New Format Changes!

No More “Chase”, Rest Breaks During Races…Here’s NASCAR’s New Format Changes!

NASCAR has been hard at work trying to figure out how to keep fans entertained and drivers happy, and over the years there have been hits and misses. “Have at it, boys!” racing perked up the fan base, but that was offset by the Car of Tomorrow disaster and the strange layout that is The Chase. Whatever happened to mark a distance, hope you don’t wreck or blow the engine, and cross the line first to win? We don’t know, but we’ve recently found out that NASCAR is changing things up again. Here’s what to expect for the next season, for all three series (Monster Energy Cup, Xfinity series, and Trucks), courtesy of

1. Each race will be divided into three segments, with ten-minute breaks in-between racing.

A break in the middle of the action? That used to be the godsend that came with a car winding up on it’s roof in the infield, but now that’s going to be a scheduled deal. Each race will be measured out and divided into thirds, with breaks set in between. The reason: “there will be collaborative effort between NASCAR and the TV networks to avoid missing as much on-track action as possible (including pit stops).”

2. A new points system will be used.

“At the end of each stage, drivers who finish in the Top 10 will be awarded points on a scale from 10 points to one point which will be included in their total from the race. At the end of each race, the winner will receive 40 points, while second through 35th position will be awarded on a 35 to two-point scale, with all positions 36th and lower to be awarded one point.

Each stage winner will also receive one playoff point and the overall race winner will receive five playoff points – all of which will be carried into the 10-race NASCAR playoff at the end of the season.”

Um, okay.

3. Don’t call it “The Chase”. 

Points can be collected throughout the season up until the season finale race at Homestead-Miami Speedway, at which point the top four will race for championship honors, which will go to the driver who has the highest finishing position. During the “regular season”, the driver who gains the most points will have fifteen additional “playoff points” added to their total, as will the top-ten finishers of each race until the Round of Eight race.

Racing timeouts? Points tracking? Fantasy NASCAR seasons? What do you make of all of this?

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39 thoughts on “No More “Chase”, Rest Breaks During Races…Here’s NASCAR’s New Format Changes!

  1. Nick

    Okay sure, mess with the points and or the chase.. but splitting the races up into 3 race sessions is not for me.. kinda guarantees to ruin the flow of a long race plus whatever the weather or wrecks is going to do.. and what next?.. perhaps a break for signing autographs half way through the Bathurst 1000 or maybe a breakfast break during Le Mans.. I know they’re just trying to please the people with short attention spans and/or get people up out of their seats buying stuff but no thank you.

    1. Matt Cramer

      I think ruining the flow of a long race was kind of the idea here – most of the action happens on the last couple laps the way things are now.

  2. Andamo

    Who are they trying to BS ? This isn’t what the fans want, it’s what the TV networks and advertisers want.

  3. orange65

    Give up the circus crap and just straight up race! Yes, you are going to lose the people who flocked to NASCAR because it was the in thing- but they were going to leave anyway. Focus on your roots- what made people like you to begin with- good racing!

  4. Mr. Mercury

    NASCAR is gasping for air. It has been in a downward spiral for years and there is nothing they can do to save it. Most fans have moved on and quite a few major sponsors have left the “sport”.
    Have you noticed how the cameras show only low shots of the track during a race? That is because the grandstands are half empty and they do not want that televised.
    Maybe, just maybe if they would go back to racing STOCK CARS instead of the excuse for a stock looking vehicle they now use a few fans might start to show interest again. Slight chance for sure.

  5. Race Car Alex

    I, as well as many others have pretty much completely given up on NASCAR. Im sick of the politics, whining, fines, rules, and changes. Ease off and let the guys race like men, and I’ll gladly flip on the tv every Sunday. NASCAR is scratching and clawing for more viewers after the last couple years. Im sick of it, and may watch a couple select races, but thats it. Drag Racing is the one for me.

    1. Tont Roberts

      I agree, NHRA. I can buy a decent priced ticket with pit pass and probably get any picture, autograph and smell like racing alcohol by the time I go home. Use to not miss Nascar, haven’t watched a complete race in over 3 yrs. haven’t wanted to go to any in over 8 yrs. use to not miss a race either on TV or was always going to them. Politics and feed the suits back pockets.

  6. David Beard

    Shorten the races up so they can be finished on one tank of gas and let them RACE. Not drive fast for a long time and then race for the last ten laps. Or use the new break format and that’s the only time you can fuel or work on the car. Then turn them loose to RACE.

    The other thing I’d like to see is NHRA and Napcar stop referring to their post season as “playoffs”. We don’t screw around playing games, we race. I’d prefer it if they got rid of the whole post season though. There’s no reason racing needs to emulate stick and ball sports.

  7. MGBChuck

    Seems like a Walt Disney production to me, wouldn’t mind shortening most races to around 2 hours, couple 4 500 milers, and the one who scores the most points from all the races is the CHAMPION. Drag Racing needs to go back to who scores the most in ALL the races is CHAMPION too. These big organizations are doing an excellent job of making it easy to watch all the quality doorslammer racing on the internet instead!

  8. Grumpy Greg

    Here’s a thought, go back to racing “stock cars”, not some shop made car…
    If you want to race a Camry make sure it has 4 doors!!!
    Not sure how racing has gotten so far off track smh

  9. Bob

    A break in a race? Really?! That is just ridiculous and and makes it more like the Friday night dirt track races broken into heats. Part of the history of the sport is to have the endurance to go the whole race and not stop, have a snack, and then go back out. I have faded away from watching nascar the last couple years and I am done with them.

  10. Ricky Harper

    I stopped watching and following NASCAR in the early 90s. It’s downhill trend of legislating the racing out of racing had begun, and I was getting disgusted. Then, at one of their way too few road races I watched a driver get black flagged for passing on the right. What?! Even the announcers were incredulous. I said to my wife I would never watch NASCAR again, and have not once done so.

    If they would get back to interesting cars and real racing instead of a show, I would be right there with them.

    NASCAR is the WWE of racing.

  11. Crazy

    last 12 races are still the chase..
    This just makes it so you can’t click off laps until the end. one of the main things people complained about..
    The rest in between heats is good as it allows lower funded teams to play..
    It also makes a team earn points for racing the 1st part middle and if they get in a wreck later the races isn’t a total lost points wise.. So they won’t be fearing getting a DNF and total loss of points..
    The lower teams that don’t have an army of engineers the break will allow time to talk back and forth to think about what to adjust and how..
    Also allows those that, you know support the racing by going to the tracks, go get a beer or restroom/food and not miss anything..

  12. mike

    get rid of the “aero” it has ruined the racing. i’d rather see cars going 150 banging on each other than cars going 190 and spread out because when the y catch another car the air goes off their nose and can’t pass. leads to 495 mile parades

  13. Tont Roberts

    Really sick to see the sport that once was neck to neck with College Football, Both that have been at the top of the sports World for many years,Yes both are very popular southern sports where Nascar comes from and all the great names that made the sport what it was, I’ve heard some say redneck so what. It came from the south and proud of it. If you know any history at all about Nascar the 1979 Daytona race what happend and what became the great birth of Nascar to live TV. Not promoting fighting, but letting men be men in a rough & tough sport. If you want to stay pretty take up Dancing with the Stars. Oh but of course fighting, some foul language ect. and the sponsors all whine we can’t have that. The name “Intimidator” wasn’t from being the political correct guy. Love them or hate them Bobby,Bill, Cale, Dale, Darrel,Davey,David,Jeff,Junior,Mark,Richard, Rusty and many more of the old guys are what put Nascar to the top. It wasn’t the suits & ties sucking up the money. Got one good tip for all you suits. I bet you want get the first fan to come to the track without some good drivers doing there job. Need to get the big boy panties out of the bottom of the closet, if not the track are going to be corn fields before long.

  14. Gary T Koeller

    National Association of SAME Car Racing. Barnum and Baily is alive and well. It’s all over exsept for the sad singin’ for NASCAR, like motor sports of all disciplines. I know…..I hate it too!

  15. 1966longroof

    Other than safety, let these guys build their own cars again. Starting with a factory body. Currently the cars are pretty much identical, other than the head light and tail light decals. Its just a 400-500 iroc race. Frick’n boring. More and more, home town short tracks are starting to live stream there Saturday night shows. Thats what i watch, and its a hell of alt more entertaining!!

  16. Andrew Smith

    Honestly Nascar does need changes but these are not the changes it needs. The races are dull. The cats are ask the same and there is nothing stock about them. Tube frames with 65 Galaxie front suspension and 67 Chevy Truck rear suspension with dedicated Nascar engines.

    How about real stockish cars that come from the Ford/Gm/Chrysler plants. Mustangs Camaros and Challengers are as big as the old 60s mid size cars now. Weld in a roll cage, tweak the engine and suspension and race.

    Stop overregulating and catering to sponsors with these fake cars. Real cars real drivers real racing. That’s the solution.

  17. C.M. Bendig

    I stopped watching when the ‘cars of the future’ started. That Daytona 500 me and the Ex got 2 cases of beer, cooked some BBQ pork, and were ready to watch some Racing. We were both asleep by lap 50. We both stopped watching Nascar racing that day.

    1. Barry

      Go back to this is the cubic inch motor you can run. Qualify then get our there run. Whoever wins the most races at the end of the season is your champion. Stop all this points crap 10 minutes and crap.

  18. CharlesW

    IMO do it like all the small tracks around the country, have heat races, semi features and a main feature going from a 40 car field to a 20 car field, you want to see some driving then, you would be sure to get it

  19. Truckin Ted

    If a race happens and there’s no one to watch it, it still might be a race…….no matter the format……but no one cares either way. First you have to put butts in the stands.

    Wanna know why Bowman Gray fills the stands every weekend? Because folks can afford a ticket.

  20. Brad Martin

    Put them on dirt for half the races. Get back to their roots and start over. The races have not been entertaining since the late 90’s. Kill it with fire and start over. Heats and Mains. 20 to 25 cars maximum, maybe more depending on track length. Let a garage built car have a chance. Sponsorship will drop but competition will be outstanding.

  21. Ted

    Part of the problem is this continual finishing a race under yellow. No brand difference, cookie cutter crap, and drivers who’d rather knit with the guys pitted next to them than duke it out. And I don’t mean that d-bag Busch, if he’s a brawler Stephen Hawkings is in trouble. Bring some cars on the track we can buy, small block 4 speeds, stop screwing with the flags and watch the fans come back. Car of the future…..bha ahah hahahahah….

  22. John Smith

    Why not just have driverless cars? The regular drivers can sit in their haulers and watch the race with their familes, When the race is over, the winning driver comes out for a photo op.

    NASCAR are you trying to finish off the brand. I’II be at NHRA events this year.

  23. Spanners

    This is just plain DUMB ASS, even for NASCAR.
    I agree with the majority of these comments, the returning ‘stock meaning stock’ especially so..
    These new changes are a misguided grasp at the wrong end of the tool, causing the tool to awkwardly fire across the cars roof being caught mid flight as a generous fan stopped any more damage being caused by halting the tools progress with their face.

    For freaking sake stop giving us “what you think we want to see” and give us “what we want to see”

    WOW. What’s freaking happening to Motorsports ??
    Not just in the USA, EVERYWHERE!
    Did it sleep with the pit-girls dodgy friend, now its got that weird rash
    Oh yea. That’s right………….

    Motorsport Codes around the world slowly started being run by Guys and Gurls with a ‘Management Degree’ together with their associates ‘Health and Safety’, ‘Resource Authority’ and ‘Marketing’

    Who’s combined volume of Passionate Automotive Blood wouldn’t amount to enough to even cc the dish of a piston. I am confident in my assumption that many of these directors would struggle to find the way to any pit garage or paddock and proceed to name any tool or component correctly, apart from the blindingly basic knowledge picked up by flicking through that preschool favorite ‘Wheels-On-The-Bus’

    Return the Motorsports to the Constructors, Drivers, Fans and Suppliers
    The entity that created its life
    A disposable investment free-for-all it will not make,
    but neither will a deceased race series

  24. Tim

    My opinion, well things never stay the same, sports, politics, hell as far as that goes, life in general.
    Although I don’t see this as bringing in more fane base, I do see it as a plus for those of us already watching NASCAR.
    When you combine all the changes I see it as we’re going to be watching 3 races in one. All the drivers will be trying to get into the top 10 in each segment, so instead of one race to the finish, you’re going to be seeing three.
    Then they can receive points up to Homestead? No Chase? So let’s face it, if you’re driver didn’t make the chase your interest level dropped. Now they have your interest for all the races.
    So I say, give it a chance, see where it goes.

    And just in case anyone is NASCAR reads these things, I’d love to see changes in the TV schedule. I refuse to pay outrageous cable/satellite prices just to watch NASCAR.

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