Here’s more info on the race at Darlington Raceway
It’s time to get excited. This Sunday, NASCAR returns. Darlington Raceway is set to host the NASCAR Cup Series in Darlington, South Carolina.
However, until today, some things remained unknown.
There will be no practice or qualifying sessions. This is to condense the race day and allow teams to leave home and return home the same day as the event.
Darlington Starting Grid
When they drop the green, drivers will hit turn one for the first time. But, how will they set the starting grid?
NASCAR has announced the starting lineup will be set by a combination of random draw and owner points. Officials did not specify when the draw is expected to take place.
Positions 1-12 in owner points will be in their own group of random draw. They will set the front 12 positions in the race, based on the number drawn.
Current Top 12 (Owner Points): Kevin Harvick, Joey Logano, Chase Elliott, Alex Bowman, Jimmie Johnson, Ryan Blaney, Matt Kenseth, Aric Almirola, Matt DiBenedetto, Brad Keselowski, Denny Hamlin and Kyle Busch.
Positions 13-24 in owner points will draw for positions 13-24 on the grid at Darlington. They must be charter teams.
Positions 25-36 in owner points will draw for positions 25-36 on the grid at Darlington. They must be charter teams.
Positions 37-40 will be reserved for a random draw between non-charter teams.
Pit stall selection
Pit stalls will be selected by owner points. Number one in owner points, get the first pick of pit stall. They will then pick in order, all the way through the first 36 positions in owner points (charter teams).
Charter teams will be last to pick stalls.
There will be a competition caution at lap 30. However, this will be slightly different than previous competition yellows.
The field will be frozen at the drop of the yellow. On the first lap, the top 20 cars will pit. On the next lap, positions 20-40 in the race will pit.
Teams will be given extra time to make adjustments. There’s no race to the pit exit. They will only need to beat the pace car to the pit exit and they’ll be able to maintain their position on the restart.
But, each group will also be allowed to pit a second time as well. Positions 1-20 will again pit in a group. That will be followed by positions 21-40.
Again, no positions will be lost on the second stop. The field is frozen when the yellow flag drops and they will all restart in that same order.
This is due to the lack of practice time. It allows teams to make additional adjustments without losing positions in the race.
If a team pits more than twice or fails to beat the pit car to the pit exit, they will lose positions.
Darlington: stage lengths
1-90 – Stage 1
91-185 – Stage 2
186-288 – Stage 3