Points System Reform: What Other Changes They Could've Made
by Jonathan Fjeld

Written 2/22/2011

Regan Smith qualified for the Bud Shootout after winning the 2008 Rookie of the Year, yet did not win a race (technically) or get a pole. 

   NASCAR, for many years has had nearly the same points system for the past 39 years since the Modern Era began. Throughout the years, NASCAR has made little changes like back in 2007. They increased 5 points for the winner and put the maxinum amount of points to 195 (190 for winning and leading a lap and 5 more for leading the most laps). However with the times of simpler and easier ways of life, NASCAR decided it was time to change it. Now the maxinum amount of points is 48 (44 for winning and leading a lap, 1 for leading the most, and 3 for the win). This brings up a great topic, what changes could've been made instead? Here's a few changes that would've been nice:
   Gatorade Duel, Qualifying format change:
I can never figure out the way the Duels work no matter how hard I try. Trying to figure it out, I came up with a format that could work:
-Top 20 of the Duels and the front row are locked in
-The past champion or the driver fastest in qualifying not in already makes it in
   The qualifying format:
-Top 42 make it in, past champion or past winner makes in it if not in already
-Whoever's 43rd if this occurs is out if they're NOT a past champ or past winner of the race
   Bring back "pioneer" tracks:
   If you wanna attract fans to the stands, bring back some tracks like North Wilkesboro, Rockingham, Darlington's 2nd event, and others like I-70 and Nazereth. All these were very fun short tracks that fans like myself liked to watch (even though I never saw a single race at I-70 or North Wilkesboro live). Now NASCAR has got a bunch of 1.5 mile tracks.
   And finally,
   Make the Bud Shootout hard to get into:
   This year the Bud Shootout saw 24 cars with the likes of Kevin Conway, Regan Smith, and Derrike Cope to name a few. They have probably never won a pole in their career. Why are they in? Cope's a 500 winner. Conway and Smith are past rookies of the year. 4-5 years ago, these drivers wouldn't ever be allowed in because of the criteria back then. That was when you had to win a pole or win a Shootout in the past years to get in. Why'd they change? They wanted the "right" drivers. NASCAR, if you want the "right" drivers, you might just wanna go back to that old criteria of all pole sitters make it in with the last 10 Shootout winners.
If you make these changes, you may see some change in the fans. You may see some change in how they qualify too.
***The opinions expressed are solely those of the writer.***