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That's scorin'

January 27, 2011 - Rob Weaver
The scoring system NASCAR’s owners plan to use this season may leave room for improvement, but it sure sounds better than the system used since 1975.

The new system would award the race winner 43 points, with one less point awarded for second place and so one through the 43-driver field. There are a few bonus points up for grabs, but that’s basically it.

I will be interested to see how the new system will allow top drivers in a race series to recover from an early exit or two. One problem with race series scoring is a talented driver with a capable team might not be able to bounce back from a DNF. That’s unfair when the failure to finish is not the fault of the driver, or even his equipment. That’s especially true for a series which produces a lot of mangled metal.

Formula One last year switched from a system that awarded points to the top eight finishers on a 10-8-6-5-4-3-2-1 basis. In 2010, the top 10 places received points according to a 25-18-15-12-10-8-6-4-2-1 schedule. Maybe it was just coincidence, but the drivers’ championship wasn’t settled until the last race of the season, in which four drivers were in position to claim the title.

MotoGP, the world’s premiere motorcycle racing series, awards points to top 15 finishers on a 25-20-16-13-11-10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1. My favorite rider, Casey Stoner, couldn’t overcome a couple of early season DNFs, but that was his fault; he crashed out in early laps while when he had an impressive lead.

Of course, if the stock-car series’ chairman, Bill France, wants to ponder a simpler points system, he need only look at the AMA Superbike series owned by the family company, Daytona Motorsports Group.

For a look at NASCAR’s previous scoring system and how it compares to other series, use this link:


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