NASCAR Modernizing Competition Model

Jeff Gordon (24) leads the field early during the 2013 Daytona 500. (NASCAR Photo)
Jeff Gordon (24) leads the field early during the 2013 Daytona 500. (NASCAR Photo)

CONCORD, N.C. – NASCAR officials have often said the series has a goal to constantly improve its core product.

To that end, NASCAR has launched a wide-ranging initiative to transform its competition model in the following areas: Governance, Rules, Deterrence/Penalties and Officiating/Inspection.

At the direction of Brian France, NASCAR has begun a careful evaluation of competition in 2012, working with world-class consulting firm, McKinsey & Company, which has been retained at times by almost every major sport in America and globally, and long-time automotive executive Brent Dewar.

A steering committee led by Mike Helton, Steve O’Donnell, Gene Stefanyshyn, Robin Pemberton and Steve Phelps guided four internal ‘working teams’ to create a blueprint for transforming competition in the areas of Rules, Governance, Deterrence/Penalties and Officiating/Inspection.

There have been two primary goals from the outset – continue to modernize competition by injecting science and technology into all of our operations – as Brian France has repeatedly declared – and position NASCAR as a leader in the sports and entertainment marketplace of the future

NASCAR is now actively engaged in dialogue with industry stakeholders on the proposals and ideas this project has yielded and that communication will continue over the next several months.

The working teams have developed blueprints for 11 initiatives within the four key areas. They are:


– Move rule-making from Officiating to R&D/Innovation

– Enhance effectiveness of appeals process by redefining process and appeals board member criteria


– Simplify rulebook and increase objectivity by replacing written rules with CAD designs

– Enhance parts approval by formalizing submission and approval process

– Increase consistency of rule interpretation across National Series

Penalty / Deterrence

– Strengthen deterrence model to reduce inspection required to ensure competitive racing

Officiating / Inspection

– Increase use of technology on pit road

– Maintain rigor of inspection while creating greater efficiency in the entire process

– Improve efficiency of process by creating race team inspection scheduling system

– Enhance effectiveness of inspection through data collection and trend analysis

· Create unified inspecting and officiating model across National Series

NASCAR plans to implement a number of these ideas in time for the 2014 season, but many will require more time.NASCAR hopes to have the full scope of these plans in place for the start of the 2015 season.

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