By AMANDA VINCENT
The NASCAR Drivers Council has somewhat of a different look in 2017, as Chase Elliott, Austin Dillon, Ryan Blaney and Aric Almirola have been added to the membership roster. Drivers remaining on the Council include Denny Hamlin, Kyle Busch, Jimmie Johnson, Brad Keselowski, Joey Logano and Kevin Harvick.
The new additions to the council replace Dale Earnhardt Jr., Tony Stewart and Kyle Larson, who were on the Drivers Council last year. With the addition of four drivers, despite the subtraction of only three, membership of the Council grows from nine to 10 members.
Membership is determined by previous year performance and/or an election by Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series competitors.
The Drivers Council membership periodically meets with NASCAR officials and executives to voice concerns and provide input on potential rules changes and procedures. Last year’s Drivers Council has been credited with the format of the 2016 Sprint All Star Race and the new stage race format implemented for 2017.
“Obviously, all the drivers have a voice, but the guys that go in and sit in the room are sort of the messengers and relay all the drivers’ feedback,” Almirola told NBC Sports. “I’m excited to have the opportunity to see how that whole process works.”
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