The exact division of how NASCAR national series races will be segmented was announced on Thursday.
NASCAR released the exact stage lengths for its new three-segmented format that will be used in every 2017 Monster Energy Cup Series, Xfinity Series, and Camping World Truck Series race on Thursday.
Due to varying distances of races and track lengths, NASCAR did employ a universal formula in determining how national division races would be sectioned into three parts. But every race will see the first two segments consist of the same number of laps, with the third and final segment covering the remaining scheduled distance.
Races are now considered official after the completion of the second stage even if the distance completed is less than halfway, the standard used under the old format.
“Every track is unique for its characteristics in length, surface and overall racing conditions,” NASCAR senior vice president of competition Scott Miller said. “We worked closely with race teams on expected fuel and tire runs over the entirety of an event when considering stage lengths. And in the end, stage lengths were decided based upon what would provide the best race for fans.”
Segmenting races was introduced by NASCAR last month as a way to enhance competition within the entirety of a race, as well as the duration of the race regular season. Drivers who finish in the top 10 in Stage 1 or 2 accumulate points on a sliding scale from 10-to-1, while the winner of each segment earns a single bonus point that is applied to their total when the playoffs begin. When the third stage concludes the first-place driver is declared the winner and points are distributed throughout the field.
All three national divisions open the 2017 season next weekend (Feb. 24-26) at Daytona International Speedway. Stage breakdowns are as follows: