Distributed by The Sports Xchange
When the green flag waves on the inaugural NASCAR Camping World Truck Series event at Eldora Speedway on July 24 the fans are in for something a bit different.
Today, NASCAR announced that qualifying and race procedures for the "Mudsummer Classic" will follow a different format than any of the other points-paying events in NASCAR's three national series. The race will be the first of two to take place on a Wednesday evening (Bristol's the other), live on SPEED.
Unlike asphalt track, dirt tracks have historically used a different format and that will be the case for this event, the first NASCAR national series race held on dirt since 1970, the Home State 200 at State Fairgrounds Speedway in Raleigh, N.C., won by Richard Petty.
NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Director Chad Little was a guest on the radio show "Tradin' Paint" on SiriusXM, where he made the announcement and explained the format changes.
"NASCAR and Eldora Speedway have collectively worked together to come up with a format that embraces the history of dirt track racing while also ensuring that full-time competitors have an opportunity to be a part of this special event," said Little. "This will also add an exciting element for the fans and we look forward to putting on a great show at this unique venue."
Prior to Eldora's feature event, drivers will make a two-lap qualifying run to determine their starting positions in one of five qualifying races. The lineup for the qualifying races will be based on qualifying speeds with four locked-in trucks (trucks in the top 20 in qualifying times) in each qualifying race. The top-five trucks in qualifying will start on the pole of their respective qualifying race.
Each qualifying race is eight laps, with only green flag laps counting. The highest-finishing non-locked-in truck in each qualifying race will make the feature, along with the four locked-in trucks. At the completion of the qualifying races, 25 trucks will have earned spots into the 30-truck feature.
Once all five qualifying races have been run, a 15-lap Last Chance Race will give four more competitors the opportunity to make the feature's starting grid. Again, only green flag laps will count. The lineup will be based on the finish from the qualifying races, and the top-four finishers will start the feature in positions 26-29.
The final spot in the field will go to the most recent past series champion who has not already qualified. If there is not an eligible champion, the next highest finishing truck in the Last Chance Race will earn the spot.
The feature event's race length and format are also new for the series. The race will be 150 laps divided into three segments, consisting of 60, 50 and 40 laps.
Teams will have the opportunity to change tires and work on their trucks during pit stops between each segment.