NASCAR has announced a much-needed change to the Sprint All-Star Race format for the 2013 event, scheduled for Saturday, May 18th at Charlotte Motor Speedway (live on SPEED at 7:30 p.m. ET): the running order for the fifth and final segment of the event will be based on the average finishes in the first four segments.
According to NASCAR:
“The running order at the completion of the fourth segment (Lap 80) will be repositioned based on the average finish for the first four segments directly behind the caution car prior to the opening of pit road for the mandatory four-tire pit stop. The order of the cars returning to the track will determine the starting order of the fifth segment. Running order ties will be broken by the finish of the fourth segment. This revision puts a premium on making all of the laps count leading up to the final 10-lap shootout with the race winner earning a $1 million pay day from Sprint.”
The race will continue to be run in four, 20-lap segments and one 10-lap final segment. All laps will count in segments one through four. In the fifth and final segment, only Green Flag laps will be counted. There will be optional pit stops during the break following each of the first three segments, with the field set by the pit stop/stay out positioning during the five caution laps.
In 2012, drivers who won their segments dropped to the back of the field – “sandbagging,” some called it – in order to save their cars for the final segment and the $1 million prize.
The eligibility criteria for the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race remain the same:
- Drivers who have won NASCAR Sprint Cup races in the current and preceding year. If a driver leaves a team with which he has won a race, he or she remains eligible (through the last race before the all-star race), however, the team does not
- Drivers who are past NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race winners in the past 10 years
- 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
Information in this piece provided by NASCAR Media
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