Breaking Down the 2022 NASCAR All-Star Race Format
Late last week, NASCAR unveiled the format for 2022’s running of the All-Star Race. The exhibition event with $1 million on the line is fast approaching, as the Texas event is less than three weeks away. 2022 marks the second-straight season where this race takes place at Texas Motor Speedway. Let’s take a detailed look at what May 22 will hold in the Open and the All-Star feature. All photos below are credit to NASCAR.com.
Practice and Qualifying
Everyone entered into both the Open and the All-Star Race will have a brief practice session. Following practice is qualifying, which will feature one lap of single-car time trials. The top eight in qualifying will advance onto an entirely revamped round two. The fastest eight will be pitted head-to-head in an elimination-style bracket for the pole. Two teams at a time will duel with a four-tire pit stop, then drivers head out with no pit road speed limit. The first car to the finish line will move onward, with the final pair competing for the pole.
The 50-lap Open event will be very similar to years past. This last-chance qualifier race will be split into three stages of 20-20-10 laps, with each segment winner moving onto the All-Star Race. After this event concludes, one more driver will advance on through the fan vote. The Open race is known for daring last-lap moves to make the feature event, so this will be can’t-miss entertainment.
The main event itself will be 125 laps in total, divided into four segments of 25-25-25-50 laps. Each stage winner will start the final segment up front, if they can maintain a top-15 spot. After Stage 2, the pit stop competition will commence. The team with the fastest four-tire pit stop will win the pit crew award, and the driver will start the final stage fourth if he can finish Stage 3 in 15th or better.
For the final stage, there will be a competition caution between laps 15 and 25 if no natural caution occurs. At the end of this last 50-lap segment, the winner will take home the $1 million payday.
This trip to Texas Motor Speedway will end with one driver winning a million dollars. Be sure to not miss a lap of action from the biggest all-star event in sports. Coverage of the 2022 NASCAR All-Star Race is Sunday, May 22 at 8:00 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN, and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio Channel 90. 20 drivers are already locked into the main event. These include race winners from 2021 and 2022, past All-Star Race winners, and past Cup champions. The Open race will also decide four more contenders. This will mark the Next Gen car’s debut at Texas Motor Speedway, so the list of potential winners is wide open.
Written by Peter Stratta
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Photo Credit to Chris Graythen/Getty Images for NASCAR