NASCAR Fun Facts
The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) is the largest sanctioning body of stock cars in the United States. The three largest racing series sanctioned by NASCAR are the Sprint Cup, the Nationwide Series and, as of the 2009 season, the The Camping World Truck Series. It also oversees NASCAR Local Racing, the Whelen Modified Tour, and the Whelen All-American Series. NASCAR sanctions over 1,500 races at over 100 tracks in 39 states, Canada, and Mexico. From 1996 to 1998, NASCAR held exhibition races in Japan and an exhibition race in Australia in 1988.
With roots as regional entertainment in the Southeastern U.S., NASCAR has grown to become the second-most popular professional sport in terms of television ratings inside the U.S., ranking behind only the National Football League. Internationally, NASCAR races are broadcast in over 150 countries. It holds 17 of the top 20 attended sporting events in the U.S.,1 and has 75 million fans who purchase over $3 billion in annual licensed product sales. These fans are considered the most brand-loyal in all of sports and as a result, Fortune 500 companies sponsor NASCAR more than any other governing body. In 2007 NASCAR made a profit of just under $3 billion, and was the second richest motorsport (Formula One was first).
NASCAR's headquarters are located in Daytona Beach, Florida, although it also maintains offices in four North Carolina cities: Charlotte, Mooresville, Concord, and Conover. Regional offices are also located in New York City, Los Angeles, Arkansas, and international offices in Mexico City and Toronto. Additionally, owing to its southern roots, all but a handful of NASCAR teams are still based in North Carolina, especially near Charlotte.
Before the start of the 2009 season, NASCAR changed restart rules regarding the final moments of all races in the Sprint Cup, Nationwide Series and Camping World Truck Series. Previously, when the race was inside the final ten laps, all cars/trucks on the lead lap were in a single-file restart in that window. As of the 2009 season, the window changed to the final 20 laps. The "lucky dog"/"free pass" rule was still eliminated in the last ten laps of a race. This rule will not matter starting at the July Daytona race, with the addition of "Double-File Restarts Shootout Style."
After being successful in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, NASCAR will implement a double-file restart system starting at the July Dayonta race. The entire field will line up double-file, much like the start of the race at every restart. The leaders and other lead lap cars are now in front always when taking the green flag. Cars who choose to stay out and not pit during a caution flag who are in front of the leaders are now waved-around to restart (double file) at the back of the field. The lucky dog/free pass rule is now in effect the entire distance of the race, and the double-file restarts are for every restart, including green-whie-checkered finishes. The only reason cars do not line up double-file in the order they are position wise on the leaderboard is if they are serving a penalty (in most cases, for pit road violations). The leader of the race also has the option of selecting which lane, inside or outside, to restart in, however, the 3rd place car (and 5th, 7th, and so on) will always restart on the inside.