All Star Race Format Announced

This year the annual All Star Race will be held at Texas Motor Speedway on May 22.  A non-points race,  the drivers are racing for a $1 million prize.

NASCAR has revealed the format for the race.

Always looking to shake things up, one of the biggest changes for this year is the format for qualifying.  Similar to normal qualifying procedures, the drivers will make a single lap to set their qualifying speeds.  The order of making a run will be the reverse of current point standings at the time of the run.  The top eight drivers will then battle for the pole in a head to head battle that features two drivers facing off against each other that will include a pit stop.  After a four tire change and a drop of the jack the drivers will race down pit road – no speed limit – and race for the start/finish line.  The driver who crosses the line first is the winner.

However, the qualifying format for the All Star Open race will reflect the more traditional format used during points races with the order being based on the points standings.  The drivers will qualify in reverse order of the points.

The Open race itself will have three stages of two 20 laps segments and a 10 lap segment.  The winner of each stage and the race winner will all transfer into the main All Star race.

There will also be a driver who makes it into the main race via the fan vote (which is currently open at nascar.com/fanvote).

Like the Coca-Cola 600, the All Star race will include four stages with stages one, two, and three lasting 25 laps each and stage four lasting 50 laps for a total of 125 laps around the mile and a half track.

However, things get very complicated once the drivers reach the final stage…  If the driver who wins stage one places no further than 15th in stages two and three, he will sit on the pole for stage four.  The winner of stage two will start alongside the pole sitter if he places no further than 15th in stage three.  And the winner of stage three will start stage four in third place.

Once stage two is complete ALL of the drivers must come down pit road for a four tire change pit stop.  The crew that completes service in the shortest amount of time will win the pit challenge and start stage four in fourth as long as their stage three finish is no further back than 15th.

NASCAR has frequently called a “competition caution” to allow crews to check tire wear after inclement weather conditions or any time they feel it is needed.  If there is no caution flag between lap 15 and lap 25 of stage four, NASCAR will call a “competition caution” they are calling an ”All Star competition caution”.

Fans will need to pay close attention during this year’s All Star race once the race reaches the final stage.

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