NASCAR chairman and CEO Brian France said changed race start times or points structure could be in play for the Sprint Cup Series down the road, in a season-opening interview Tuesday night on MRN Radio’s “NASCAR Live.”
France, who is now into his 11th year as head of the sport, responded to fan questions that weren’t really that wide-ranging a selection.
Points changes could come, not for 2014 but possibly 2015 at the earliest, if France opts to add more points for winning.
“We are not satisfied that we have the exact balance we want with winning, consistency, points, running for a championship,” he explained. “We think we can make some tweaks to continue to incentivize risk taking and racing harder and so on. I made some remarks about that in Las Vegas and we’ll undoubtedly be coming with some things that put the incentive on winning races and putting things at the highest level.”
Regarding start times, when asked if he’d consider moving some races earlier, France responded, “If anything, we’re trying to go a little bit later. We’re, obviously, trying to get more prime-time events and be in the widest possible audience that’s available on television, although I certainly understand that creates some hardships as well with people trying to get back.”
The bright side of that, France said, was that traffic is bound to be less later into the night.
Other key points from the hour-long interview: France said he is committed to further rule changes to create more side-by-side racing, he liked the way Richard Childress is bringing back the No. 3 to Sprint Cup, he is pleased with the development of NASCAR’s diversity program, mentioning Danica Patrick, Kyle Larson and Darrell Wallace Jr., and said if Dodge or any other manufacturer was to look at coming into NASCAR as a fourth one that they would need a long-term plan and be ready for a tough first couple years.