Changes are coming to NASCAR in 2014, and they may be drastic.
It’s been known for a while that The Chase format has been under review. After the incident at Richmond International Raceway last fall, even fans have been questioning “loopholes” that make everything seem somewhat staged. Complaints flooded in, upset about too many things. Manipulation, the value of winning, a lack of excitement.
The consensus? “Something has to change.” Well, everything is reportedly changing.
Breaking news came from the Charlotte Observer’s Jim Utter Friday night, saying that “NASCAR is planning a vast restructure of the points system in its premier Sprint Cup Series.” This new arrangement would include eliminations and expanding the Chase field from 12 to 16 drivers. The revamp would make a playoff spot almost guaranteed to any driver that wins.
This idea isn’t new; similar situations play out in football, basketball, and baseball after the regular season ends. However, it has the same purpose in said sports: to create excitement, which NASCAR is missing, according to some unimpressed fans.
It must be noted that nothing has been officially announced, and things can definitely change. It is possible that the news was leaked to see how fans would respond, so expressing civilized opinions is encouraged. Also, NASCAR is at a crucial point, with a new TV deal starting in 2015. Major changes were made before the 2001 TV package came into effect.
All that is known at this time? NASCAR chairman Brian France isn’t happy with the current points system, and changes will happen. The severity of said changes is up in the air.