NASCAR will continue its practice of not conducting practice or qualifying sessions for national-series races for the remainder of 2020 season, the sanctioning body announced Tuesday. For the most part, practice sessions and qualifying sessions have not been held for races in any of NASCAR’s three national series since a return to racing from a 10-week break prompted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Following discussions with our race teams and the broader industry, NASCAR will continue to conduct its race weekends without practice and qualifying for the remainder of the 2020 season in all three national series,” NASCAR Sr. Vice President of Competition Scott Miller said. “The current format has worked well in addressing several challenges during our return to racing. Most importantly, we have seen competitive racing week-to-week. NASCAR will adjust the starting lineup draw procedure for the playoff races and will announce the new process at a later date.”
The remainder of the 2020 season schedule includes races for all three of NASCAR’s national series at the Daytona International Speedway road course in mid-August. None of NASCAR’s top series have contested races on the course.
NASCAR will continue to set starting grids for regular-season races by blind drawings. Most races since the return from the coronavirus break have started with grids determined by drawings among the top-12 teams in owner points standings for top-12 positions on grids and similar drawings for 13th through 24th and 25th through 36th positions. Back positions for open, or non-chartered teams are set by owner points.
The exceptions to that formula for determining starting lineups have been second races of two-consecutive races at a single track. For those races, starting lineups have been determined by the finishing orders of the first races, with the top-20 finishers of the first race being inverted for the start of the second races in the Cup Series and the second half of the starting grids for second races mirroring finishing orders of the first races.