Earnhardt Jr. Applauds New Format (Of course he does)

Dale Jr. is smart enough to know who butters his bread
Dale Jr. is smart enough to know who butters his bread

NASCAR's new stage-based race format was unveiled Monday in front of assembled media and industry stakeholders at the Charlotte Convention Center. You can read AR1.com's full report here.

The format, which will see points awarded throughout each event and also make each race more meaningful as drivers battle for playoff points, was lauded by the assembled drivers, executives and industry members.

Dale Earnhardt Jr., known as a diehard fan of NASCAR's glory days, said the new format will give drivers and teams much needed incentive throughout each event on the NASCAR schedule as they battle for playoff points.

"What you want to do is try to build as many points as you can for the playoffs," Earnhardt said. "When the playoffs start the guy that has 40 or 50 extra points has a good spread over everybody else. That guy is a favorite. The last couple of years we've really had no sure favorite, one guy standing above the rest. Nobody could have picked a surefire winner going into the Chase the last couple of years.

"This will put other guys in some pretty unique situations to carry those points over into each round and as guys are eliminated and those guys are eliminated with their points, it is going to change the complexity of the playoffs as it goes through."

For others, like Joe Gibbs Racing's Denny Hamlin, the format isn't as drastic a change as it appears. In fact, Hamlin thinks the many "old school" fans will love the changes.

"I think the old school fans actually should love this, because it gets back to crowning your champion based on 36 races now," Hamlin said. "It is not just those 10 races. Every single race matters. I think the old school core fan that loved the old points system where we started at (race) one and ended at (race) 36 should accept this."

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