Friday, Feb 03

MENCS: 2017 All-Star Race Format Announced

NASCAR announced the format for its 2017 All-Star race on Tuesday. The annual event will take place on Saturday, May 20 at Charlotte Motor Speedway and will be televised live on FOX Sports 1 at 6:00 p.m. ET. The Motor Racing Network will carry the live radio broadcast.

This year’s format:

The race will feature four stages (20 laps / 20 laps / 20 laps / 10 laps), totaling 70 laps, an ode to the 1992 edition of the same distance.

The goal for all competitors: Earn a spot in the final 10-lap, 10-car stage.

The winner of each of the first three stages will lock up a spot in the final stage, as long as they remain on the lead lap after the third stage.

The cars with the best average finish in the first three stages will make up the remaining spots needed to fill the 10-car final stage.

The remaining 10 cars will be lined up by average finish of the first three stages and given the option to pit. Exit off pit road determines starting order for final stage.

The winner will be awarded $1,000,000.

“The Monster Energy All-Star Race is designed to be fun for fans, showcasing the best drivers and race teams in NASCAR,” said Steve O’Donnell, NASCAR executive vice president and chief racing development officer. “With the effort that Goodyear has put into this race with multiple tire compounds, I am excited to see how the stages play out, especially the final 10-car, 10-lap sprint to the checkered flag.”

There will be an interesting element in this year’s race. Each team will be provided with one set of softer tires. The softer compounds will allow for more grip and faster speeds than teams who elect regular tires. However, if a team decides to use the softer set of tires at the beginning of the final stage, they must start behind all the teams that elect regular tires.

Qualifying will be moved back to Friday night. The format will stay the same as previous years’ format. Teams will be given three laps that feature a no speed limit pit stop. Top five teams at the end of qualifying will advance into the final round to determine starting positions one through five. The fastest stop will earn the pit crew competition award at the end of the night.

Eligibility requirements include drivers who have won a points race in 2016 or 2017, drivers who won a MENCS All-Star race and compete full-time in 2017, or those who won a MENCS championship and compete full-time in 2017. The drivers not already eligible can still get in by winning a stage in the Monster Energy Open or by winning the Fan Vote.

“The Monster Energy NASCAR All-Star Race is etched in the history of our sport for the most memorable moments, trend-setting innovation and big-money payouts,” said Marcus Smith, president and general manager of Charlotte Motor Speedway. “This new 70-lap format pays tribute to the 25th anniversary of ‘One Hot Night’ while pushing the drivers to the brink of insanity with the chances they’ll take to win $1 million.  I’m as ready as our fans for a May 20 Saturday night shootout where only a daredevil behind the wheel truly has a shot at Victory Lane.”

The Monster Energy Open will be a total of 50 laps. The stage format will be 20/20/10 laps. The winner of each stage will earn a spot into the All-Star event later that evening. Qualifying will consist of two rounds of the traditional knock-out qualifying format.


Eligible Drivers:

Chris Buescher

Kurt Busch

Kyle Busch

Dale Earnhardt Jr.

Denny Hamlin

Kevin Harvick

Jimmie Johnson

Kasey Kahne

Matt Kenseth

Brad Keselowski

Kyle Larson

Joey Logano

Jamie McMurray

Ryan Newman

Martin Truex Jr.

 What do you think of this year’s format? Tweet us @SpeedwayDigest or @NASCAR_BRETT. We would love to hear your thoughts!

Brett Winningham

Brett has been following the sport of NASCAR since the beginning of the 2006 NASCAR Sprint Cup season. Since Brett was 13, he has had a passion of chasing a job in sports that not many get the opportunity of doing. He has been in the NASCAR media since the middle of the 2010 season. Since then, he has been a part of many racing podcast shows to improve his talents. You can find him on twitter @NASCAR_Brett.


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