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NASCAR 2014 101: Making qualifying “more entertaining”

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When NASCAR announced changes for the 2014 season, one of its key changes was to qualifying for races beyond the Daytona 500. Here’s a quick look, provided by NASCAR, one what qualifying will look like for the rest of the year.

At tracks measuring 1.25 miles in length or larger, qualifying for the Coors Light Pole Award will consist of three rounds:

· The first qualifying elimination round will be 25 minutes in duration and includes all cars/trucks. The 24 cars/trucks that post the fastest single lap from the first qualifying round will advance to the second round.

· The remaining cars/trucks will be sorted based on their times posted in the first round of qualifying in descending order.

· The second qualifying elimination round will be 10 minutes in duration and the 12 cars/trucks that post the fastest single lap time will advance to the third and final round. The fastest remaining cars/trucks earn positions 13th through 24th based on their times posted in qualifying in descending order.

· The third and final qualifying round will be five minutes in duration and the fastest single lap time will determine positions 1st through 12th in descending order.

· There will be a five-minute break between each qualifying round.

At tracks measuring less than 1.25 miles, qualifying for the Coors Light Pole Award will consist of two rounds:

· The first qualifying elimination round will be 30 minutes in duration and includes all cars/trucks. The 12 cars/trucks that post the fastest single lap time from the first qualifying round will advance to the second and final round.

· The remaining cars/trucks will be sorted based on their times posted in the first round of qualifying in descending order.

· There will be a 10-minute break between the two qualifying rounds.

· The second and final qualifying round will be 10 minutes in duration and the fastest single lap time posted will determine positions 1st through 12th in descending order.

The new format does not apply to the Daytona 500, nor to non-points Sprint Cup Series events or the Camping World Truck Series event at Eldora Speedway.

“We believe the timing is right for a new qualifying format across our three national series,” said Robin Pemberton, NASCAR vice president for competition and racing development. “This style of group qualifying has all the makings of being highly competitive and more engaging to our fans in the stands and those watching on television and online. For the drivers and teams, we believe this new qualifying will fuel even greater competition leading into the events. Additionally, it provides our tracks, broadcasters and other key partners with a greater opportunity to develop more entertaining content for our race weekends.”

Keep up with the 2014 NASCAR season at www.nascar.com.

Information and quotes in this piece provided by NASCAR.

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