NASCAR to make qualifying procedure change next week at Auto Club Speedway


AVONDALE, Ariz. – Starting next week, NASCAR drivers no longer will back out of pit stalls when qualifying begins.

Richard Buck, Sprint Cup Series director, told NASCAR Talk that the change comes at the request of drivers.

The rule will be for each of NASCAR’s three national series – Sprint Cup, Xfinity and Camping World Truck Series.

Sprint Cup and Xfinity teams race next week at Auto Club Speedway.

Concerns had been raised about so many vehicles backing up at the same time out of pit stalls when each round of qualifying began, particularly the opening round.

With the change, vehicles will be parked in the pits with the front of each car pointed toward the track so a competitor can drive away when qualifying begins. When a driver returns to the pits, they will back their vehicle into the stall.

An exception will be at Martinsville Speedway. Sprint Cup cars leave from their garage stall for qualifying since Camping World Truck teams use pit road as their work area. Cup teams already reposition their cars to drive out of their garage stall.

Buck also said Sunday that he received “pretty positive” comments from crew chiefs and drivers about the 2016 package tested last week at Charlotte Motor Speedway during a one-day Goodyear tire test.

Buck says he’s “cautiously optimistic” that the proposed 2016 rules package will be used by teams at the Sprint All-Star race in May.