(Photo: Nigel Kinrade Photography)

NASCAR Expands Truck Series Playoff Field to 10 Drivers

Frontstretch’s Truck Series content is presented by American Trucks

NASCAR announced Tuesday (Jan. 21) that it will expand the Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series playoff field from eight to 10 beginning with the 2020 season.

The series will still follow its seven-race elimination-style playoff format. The Round of 10 will feature three races (Gateway, Canadian Tire and Bristol) where two drivers are eliminated from championship contention. Four more drivers will be eliminated at the end of the three races making up the Round of 8 (Las Vegas, Talladega and Martinsville) to culminate in the Championship 4 who will compete in the season finale at Phoenix Raceway for the title.

The way the format was structured in the Gander Truck Series with the Round of 8, Round of 6, Round of 4, we were leaving some excitement on the table,” Truck Series managing director Brad Moran said. “Maybe three or four years ago, not so much, but certainly the last couple of years with the series strengthening to the position it’s in right now, we really felt putting 10 teams into the playoffs for a Round of 10 is just going to make it that much more exciting and interesting, and will put a lot of emphasis on winning races, which is what we try to do.”

The Truck Series began running its playoff format in 2016, and each season, it has featured the best eight drivers whittled down to six and then four for the final race.

It seemed like the right number,” Moran continued. “We only start 32 trucks, we have a great group of owners, and we did not want to water down our playoffs, but the two additional trucks kind of changes the whole layout. It changes the whole ecosystem of the playoffs. People are going to be that much more aggressive to get one of those 10 spots, and it does marry up with the other two series when we get to the Round of 8.”

Moran also stated the change to add two more drivers to the playoffs was already in the works heading into the 2019 season but that NASCAR “just didn’t want to jump the gun doing it.”

The Truck Series kicks off its 2020 season at Daytona International Speedway on Friday, Feb. 14.

Support Frontstretch on Patreon

About Beth Lunkenheimer

Beth Lunkenheimer
Content Director Beth heads up management of our 30-person staff, acting as Tom’s main assistant with technology and personnel while working as Frontstretch’s Truck Series expert. The author of Truckin’ Thursdays and the coordinator of the site’s pre and post-race coverage, she also runs a periodic charity column that spotlights when NASCAR gives back. A childhood transplant to Texas, Beth is a 15-year writing veteran who has contributed content to BRANDT and Athlon Sports, among other outlets.

Check Also

Christian Eckes Fastest in Las Vegas Truck Practice

Frontstretch’s Truck Series content is presented by American Trucks NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck …

22 comments

  1. Avatar

    NASCAR: “… we were leaving some excitement on the table,”

    ME: Riiigggghhhttt!

  2. Avatar

    Just more opportunity for a winless driver to win the championship.

  3. Avatar

    Reminds me of a Simpson’s episode. The babies are in a pit of balls and someone notices they are getting restless or fussy. The solution…. add more balls.

    Likewise, the fans have gotten bored with the truck series. The solution…. add more drivers to the already ignored chase.

  4. Avatar

    Are there even 10 drivers that run every race in that series?

    • Avatar

      Good call… according to the article I just saw there were 11. This reeks of participation trophies. How can NASCAR have their heads so far up their asses.

  5. Avatar

    Just another attempt to manufacture drama and more points racing. When will NA$CAR figure out that the fans want to see racing for the checkered flag. Get rid of the entertainment gurus and go back to being a sport!!!

  6. Avatar

    When did the comment order change from most recent on top to oldest on top?

    • Avatar

      I also notice there is now a maximum of one reply where there were previously 4 or 5 before the reply button disappeared.
      I wish they would announce changes to the site when they make them if only to keep us from thinking we are going crazy.

      • DanG

        My apologies for the confusion. That change was made yesterday. The thought was that oldest first made conversations in the comments easier to follow.

      • DanG

        Bill, the replying to comments deeper in the thread should be back now. That’s not a setting I intended to change yesterday, but it appears I did.

    • Avatar

      Does clicking reply at the original post put the response at the end of the responses to that post? If so, this one should be under DanG, in response to rg72 (with Bill B in the middle).

    • Avatar

      Appears it does. Mystery solved!

    • Avatar

      Dan G.
      Thanks for the info. I agree that the comments flow more naturally when arranged from oldest to newest. Not as sure about the “reply” deal. I suppose for a chain of comments we will have to specify to whom we are replying. Not a big deal but a change none the less.
      So this should show up under Jeremy’s last comment (01222020-3:24) even though I am responding to you.

  7. Avatar

    The only thing that would make this absolutely perfect is a “Wild Card” round in the final race of the regular season (before the playoffs begin). In this race, the highest finisher that is not in the top 10, nor in by a win, advances via the “Wild Card” and gets to be the 11th car added to the playoffs. However, the Wild Card race should have it’s own convoluted points system giving points based on qualifying position, finishing order in each stage, average running position, cumulative time spent on pit road, how many ounces of fluid the driver drank during the race, and mystery bonus points given to all drivers who were born under the determined Astrological sign (which will be selected by some random celebrity doing a blind draw from a hat during pre-race ceremonies).

    *kindly note extreme sarcasm dripping throughout the above post

    • Avatar

      Don’t give the clowns in Daytona any more insane ideas. They do not need your help. My mom said “Many a truth was said in jest.”

    • Avatar

      I don’t think they need my help dreaming up insane ideas! 🙂

    • Avatar

      Jeremy – just like when they insert a scorned lover back into The Bachelor/Bachelorette t.v. series, brilliant!!

      • Avatar

        I can’t believe anyone would actually admit to watching that show.
        Just kidding, definitely not my cup of tea but I know a decent amount of people must be watching (probably more than NASCAR) or it would’ve been cancelled by now.

    • Avatar

      aka Daytona as the cut off race

  8. Avatar

    I agree, file this in the Who Cares category.

  9. Avatar

    Now that I’ve thought about these “Chase”s do mirror a created drama/laughable tv series. They just left the lust to another spouse program.