NASCAR sets stage lengths for 2017 events

NASCAR via Getty Images

By Aaron Bearden, Motorsports Editor

With the 2017 season just over a week away, NASCAR has finalized the segmentation of their new race-and-championship format for each round of the upcoming season.

NASCAR released Thursday the official stage lengths for each event of the 2017 season for all three of the sanctioning body’s national series, beginning with next week’s season-opening races at Daytona International Speedway.

The first two stages of each event, designed with point rewards to encourage each participating driver to compete to their best ability for the entirety of each race, will typically take up close to 50% of the event, with the final stage encompassing the race’s second half.

With races now deemed official after the completion second stage, fans of the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series can expect to see more guaranteed laps at most circuits. Just four of the tour’s 36 points-paying races will see the completion of Stage 2 before the halfway point of the scheduled distance.

However, the minor tours will see stages ending earlier. 16 XFINITY Series races will reach the end of Stage 2 before a race’s official halfway mark, with nine Camping World Truck Series events doing the same.

The final stage of each race can still be extended in the event of NASCAR Overtime.

“Every track is unique for its characteristics in length, surface and overall racing conditions,” Scott Miller, NASCAR senior vice president of competition said in a release. “We worked closely with race teams on expected fuel and tire runs over the entirety of an event when considering stage lengths. And in the end, stage lengths were decided based upon what would provide the best race for fans.”

The 2017 stage lengths for each of NASCAR’s top three series are pictured below.

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