NASCAR announced an update on Tuesday morning regarding the eligibility of open charter system teams during the Chase for the Sprint Cup.
If an open team qualifies for the Chase, it will be guaranteed a starting position in every Chase race.
This update comes following extensive discussion with industry stakeholders, according to NASCAR.
In addition, NASCAR announced that beginning this weekend at Daytona, owners points will be used instead of practice speeds to determine which open teams makes the race if qualifying is canceled.
Practice speeds will be used to determine which open teams qualify for the race if qualifying is canceled for the second and third races of every season beginning in 2017, and then owners points will be used for the remainder of the season.
“These changes provide a more even competition field for both charter and open teams, rewarding strong performances over the course of a season,” Jim Cassidy, NASCAR senior vice president of racing operations, said. “Earning a berth in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup is extremely difficult and requires consistent elite performance. Those teams should be guaranteed an opportunity to race for the title, and this ensures that will be the case.”
These changes do not currently affect the XFINITY and Camping World Truck series.