posted on Jul, 15 2004 @ 05:41 PM
it appears that the rule change to allow for more green flag finishes is a reality at last...i hope that this new rule combined with the 10 race run
for the championship does not cause more problems than it solves, keep it safe guys...
NASCAR changes rules to promote green-flag finishes
By MIKE HARRIS, AP Motorsport Writer
July 15, 2004
Yellow-flag finishes are all but finished in NASCAR.
The sanctioning body said Thursday it will go to a green-white-checkered format, hoping all Nextel Cup and Busch series events will end with the cars
The new rule will take effect with the races July 24-25 at New Hampshire International Speedway. The truck series already has the rule in place.
``The green-white-checkered format is an attempt to achieve everyone's goals -- a green-flag finish,'' NASCAR president Mike Helton said. ``This
change, hopefully, will provide competitive finishes in the relatively rare occasions it is warranted.
``This format has been successful in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck series and, considering the tight competition week in and week out in the other two
national series, we feel the time is right to use the same procedure in all three national series.''
The new format will not mean a race can't finish under yellow. If there is another caution after a green-flag restart, the race will end immediately.
The rule in the truck series has allowed multiple green-flag starts at the end of the race to assure a green-flag finish, but NASCAR said that also
will change beginning with the race Aug. 21 in Michigan to assure uniformity in all three series.
The new procedure will be used in case of a caution period that would in the past have forced the race to end under yellow, with the cars finishing
behind the pace car. Instead, the competitors will restart under a green flag after the track is deemed ready for competition and take the white flag
-- signifying one lap to go -- the next time around.
The new rule also will eliminate the need for late-race red flags, which have been used in recent seasons to stop the event, clean the track and
finish under green. The red-flag rule was used -- usually with four or five laps left -- to allow more than one lap at racing speed.
Still, four of the last 10 Cup races have ended under caution, meaning the drivers did not get to race to the finish. That didn't make the drivers or
the fans happy.
Fans were particularly enraged with the finish under caution in the spring at Talladega Superspeedway.
Under the rule NASCAR adopted last fall, freezing the field when a caution is displayed, Dale Earnhardt Jr. was first scored in the lead when the
caution came out on the 184th of the 188 laps. race. But replays showed Jeff Gordon was about three-quarters of a car-length ahead, and he was put in
With fans booing and throwing beer cans and food onto the track, Gordon drove slowly to the finish, just ahead of Earnhardt.
Some drivers are not in favor of the change to green-white-checkered finishes.
``All these race fans drinking beer and screaming and hollering have not been in a helicopter upside down with 30 tubes hanging out of you after going
end-over-end 30 times like I've been before because of these green-white starts,'' Rusty Wallace said in a recent interview with The Associated Press.
``I think it's ridiculous and it's unsafe