The sanctioning body announced a new wrinkle that should keep fans and the competitors excited. The field will be realigned at the completion of the fourth segment (Lap 80), based on each driver’s average finish for the first four segments. Once the field is aligned behind the caution car, pit road will open for a mandatory four-tire pit stop. The order in which the cars return to the track will determine the starting order of the final segment.
Ties will be broken by the finish of the fourth segment; placing a premium on making every lap count prior to the final, 10-lap shootout where the winner will earn a $1 million pay day from Sprint.
“Having the average finish through the race’s first four segments determine how the cars come down pit road for the last mandatory four-tire pit stop takes the competition to an even higher level,” said Robin Pemberton, NASCAR Vice President of Competition. “The NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race is truly a showcase event for our sport and this format should bring out the best in our drivers and our teams.”
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.
“The NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race is the highlight of our season,” said Tim Considine, director of sponsorship marketing for Sprint. “These added elements help continue the tradition of this being one of the most unique and compelling races on the NASCAR Sprint Cup calendar.”
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. Interestingly, if a driver leaves a team after winning a race, he or she remains eligible. 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
The 2013 Sprint Fan Vote runs from March 20-May 18. Fans may vote by using the NASCAR Mobile ’13 application or online at NASCAR.COM. Votes cast from the NASCAR Mobile ’13 application count double.
This will be the 29thrunning of the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race. Five-time series champion and reigning Daytona 500 champion Jimmie Johnson won last year’s race.
NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race weekend ticket packages including all Friday and Saturday activities start at just $99, including scanner rental. Fans should call 1-800-455-FANS or visit CharlotteMotorSpeedway.com for details.