NASCAR and team owners in its Cup Series have agreed to terms of an extension of its charter system to carry the format of team ownership until 2024.
“The charter agreement is delivering stability and long-term value to existing team owners while providing a clear path for ownership in the NASCAR Cup Series,” NASCAR President Steve Phelps said. “We are pleased to have reached an agreement with the team owners that extends the length of the Charter system until 2024. A healthy ownership structure ensures strong, competitive racing for our fans, which is a goal the industry collectively shares.”
The charter system was created ahead of the 2016 season to give teams added value. Thirty-six charters are in play and full-time teams that hold them have guaranteed starting spots in each points-paying race and rights to a bigger portion of revenue. The original agreement carried the deal between the sanctioning body and teams holding charters through the 2020 season with an option that could be picked up ahead of the 2021 season.
The terms of the extension, set to be implemented beginning with the 2021 season, include a 1.5 percent increase in revenue from NASCAR, tracks and media and digital rights, bringing the total going to chartered teams to 6.5 percent. Also, chartered teams will receive an additional 2.8 million from race purses. That amount will be deducted from the amount of purse money that was available to open, or non-chartered, teams. According to an article in The Athletic, chartered teams received a combined total of approximately $260 million in 2019
“After extensive consultation amongst the teams, NASCAR and other stakeholders, there is now a collaborative roadmap for development of the Next Gen Car, schedules and new areas of growth including esports and gaming,” Race Team Alliance [RTA] chairman Rob Kauffman said, as quoted by Autoweek. “The extension will continue the positive trends currently underway and advance the RTA’s goal to promote and grow the sport of stock car racing.”
Most of the owners of most of NASCAR’s chartered teams are RTA members.
Cup Series race fields allow up to 40 drivers, so up to four open teams may contest each race.