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NASCAR implements new pit format for select Xfinity, Truck races

NEWTON, IA – JULY 27: Christopher Bell, driver of the #20 Rheem Toyota, lead the field to the green flag to start the NASCAR Xfinity Series U.S. Cellular 250 at Iowa Speedway on July 27, 2019 in Newton, Iowa. (Photo by Jeff Curry/Getty Images)

By AMANDA VINCENT

NASCAR plans to eliminate timed pit stops in a handful of Xfinity and Gander RV & Outdoors Truck series races, primarily standalone races, in 2020. Changes are being made to enhance pit strategy and cut costs of personnel performing pit stops in those races. The new rules will be in effect for Xfinity Series races at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington (May 30), Iowa Speedway in Newton (June 13 and Aug. 1) and Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wis. (Aug. 8). The Truck Series will be held to these rules in races at Iowa Speedway (June 12); World Wide Technology Raceway at Gateway in Madison, Ill. (Aug. 21) and Canadian Tire Motorsport Park in Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada (Sept. 6).

In those seven races across both series, teams will not have designated pit crew members on their rosters. Each team will be allowed eight road-crew members, and pit service will be performed by some of those eight individuals. Four individuals will be allowed to change tires (included tire carriers, tire changers and a jack man), one will be allowed to fuel the car and another will be allowed to assist the driver with water, etc.

Pit stops will be performed during cautions. Stage lengths will be altered to eliminate the need for green-flag pit stops.

On oval tracks, teams may change two tires and fuel. If a team opts to change four tires, a second pit stop will be required to change the other two tires. In road-course races, teams may change four tires or fuel their cars during a single pit stop. Teams wishing to do both will have to pit twice.

For restarts, cars that don’t pit will line up first, followed by cars that pitted once, followed by cars that pitted twice. The free-pass vehicle, wave-around vehicles and vehicles that were serviced beyond NASCAR’s allowable time window will start in the back. Teams that change four tires and add fuel on a single stop will be penalized two laps, except for vehicles involved in an incident. Those damaged vehicles will be allowed four tires on a single stop to avoid additional damage.

“We believe this procedure will increase competition on track, incentivize different strategy plays to bring interesting storylines for the fans and bring efficiencies to teams that will help help strengthen the garage now and into the future,” NASCAR Xfinity Series Technical Manager Eric Peterson said.

The new pit stop format won’t be utilized in Truck Series standalone races at Eldora Speedway in Rossburg, Ohio, or at Texas Motor Speedway near Fort Worth. The Eldora race already has its own special format, due to the absence of a traditional pit road, and the length of the race at Texas lends itself to fuel-mileage strategies.

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Posted by on January 11, 2020. Filed under Breaking News,Featured,NASCAR,NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck,NASCAR Xfinity. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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