June 13, 2021

What to expect from the NASCAR All-Star Race at Texas

The annual competition among many of the Cup Series’ top stars is getting a dramatic reboot this year, including a new track host with Texas Motor Speedway.

The COVID-19 pandemic forced the all-star event to be moved to Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway last year but until then, Charlotte Motor Speedway had hosted it every year except one since 1985.

There are many other changes in Sunday night’s event. Here’s a look:

The format

The race will feature six rounds, totaling 100 laps. The starting lineup for Round 1 will be determined via random draw (Kyle Larson is on the pole).

Rounds 1 through 4 will be 15 laps each; Round 5 will be 30 laps; the final round will feature a 10-lap shootout.

At the beginning of Round 2, the field will be inverted via random draw (minimum of eight/maximum of 12).

Before the start of Round 3, the entire field will be inverted.

At the beginning of Round 4, the field will be inverted via random draw (minimum of eight/maximum of 12).

Starting positions for Round 5 will consist of drivers’ cumulative finish from Rounds 1-4. The lowest cumulative finisher starts on the pole, second-lowest starts second, and so forth. All cars must enter pit road for a mandatory four-tire pit stop during Round 5.

The starting positions in the final round are set by finishing positions of Round 5.

Only green flag laps will count in the NASCAR All-Star race.

The money

The fastest team on pit road during the mandatory pit stop will earn $100,000.

The winner of the final 10-lap round in the All-Star Race will be awarded $1 million.

Eligible drivers

There are 17 drivers already locked into the All-Star race: Christopher Bell, Ryan Blaney, Alex Bowman, Kurt Busch, Kyle Busch, William Byron, Cole Custer, Austin Dillon, Chase Elliott, Denny Hamlin, Kevin Harvick, Brad Keselowski, Kyle Larson, Joey Logano, Michael McDowell, Ryan Newman and Martin Truex Jr.

The criteria for eligibility include Cup Series race winners in 2020-21 and full-time drivers who are either past All-Star winners or past Cup Series champions.

But wait, there’s more

Four more drivers will qualify for the main event on Sunday via the All-Star Open and fan vote.

The All-Star Open will be run in three rounds – 20 laps, 20 laps and a 10-lap shootout – with the three round winners advancing to the All-Star main event. Fan balloting will determine the final driver in the field.

When and where to watch

The All-Star Open will be broadcast live on Fox Sports 1 at 6 p.m. ET Sunday.

The NASCAR All-Star Race will be broadcast live on Fox Sports 1 at 8 p.m. ET Sunday.