NASCAR is taking some risks with changes to its All-Star Race format, and Kyle Busch is not on board.
Drivers now will compete with restrictor plates in the annual exhibition race at Charlotte Motor Speedway, a 1 1/2-mile track. The plates, which typically are used at big tracks such as Daytona International Speedway and Talladega Superspeedway, limit car speed and thus a driver’s ability to separate from the pack.
The hope, then, is that the All-Star Race now will feature closer racing and a more thrilling finish. And while Busch is open to seeing restrictor plates used at smaller tracks, he’s not enamored with them being required in non-exhibition races.
“I’m not a particular fan of it, but we do need to orchestrate some better racing at mile-and-a-half tracks, particularly Charlotte for some reason,” Busch told For The Win on Friday. ” … We need to bring out more things to try, and I’m not a particular fan of slowing the lead car down and bringing that guy back to the rest of the field, but if that gets us back to closer racing then so be it.
“As far as us having to do that every single week and continuing on next year, I have to give it a chance first at Charlotte to see what it’s like before I completely throw it out. That’s not what I signed up to be a NASCAR driver for is to scrunch the field up and take the advantage away from those guys that are fast.”
In addition to adding restrictor plates, NASCAR also made the race 10 laps longer. Drivers once again will compete for a $1 million prize.
The All-Star Race gets underway Saturday, May 19, at 8 p.m. ET.
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