NASCAR has released its 2014 race schedule with a range of tweaks, including the Daytona twin 150-mile qualifying Gatorade Duels moving to night time races.
The 2014 schedule marks the 13th season of the Chase format where the top-10 in the standings, and two wildcard entries, have their points reset for the title fight over the final 10 races of the season.
As well as the Duel races moving to prime time evening slots, more races in 2014 will be run in the evening to make use of higher TV audiences.
NASCAR also used the 2014 race announcement to confirm that its Air Titan track-drying system will be available at every round of the series. The vacuum system does away with the jet dryers which have proven to only dissipate water and not actually remove it. Plus the Air Titan is seen as a far safer system for the operators.
“This season has delivered plenty of drama and excitement, and we’re anticipating even more for our fans in 2014 now that the Gen-6 car has competed at every track,” said Steve O’Donnell, NASCAR’s senior vice president of racing operations.
“Having the Air Titan at each NASCAR Sprint Cup Series weekend allows us to meet a very important goal set by our Chairman and CEO, Brian France: to drastically decrease track-drying time to the best of our ability and ensure our fans in the stands and those watching on TV get to see each race on its scheduled day.”
Of the changes in the schedule Texas Motor Speedway will earlier to April 6, which coincides with college basketball finals at Cowboy Stadium. Kansas Speedway will host its first ever Cup race at night on May 10, swapping with Darlington which will run the historic Southern 500 on April 12.
The 10-race Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup begins again at Chicagoland Speedway on September 14 with the season culminating on November 16 at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
2014 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series schedule
|Feb. 15||Daytona International Speedway (Sprint Unlimited)|
|Feb. 16||Daytona International Speedway (Daytona 500 qualifying)|
|Feb. 20||Daytona International Speedway (Duels)|
|Feb. 23||Daytona International Speedway (Daytona 500)|
|March 2||Phoenix International Raceway|
|March 9||Las Vegas Motor Speedway|
|March 16||Bristol Motor Speedway|
|March 23||Auto Club Speedway|
|March 30||Martinsville Speedway|
|April 6||Texas Motor Speedway|
|April 12||Darlington Raceway|
|April 26||Richmond International Raceway|
|May 4||Talladega Superspeedway|
|May 10||Kansas Speedway|
|May 17||Charlotte Motor Speedway (NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race)|
|May 25||Charlotte Motor Speedway|
|June 1||Dover International Speedway|
|June 8||Pocono Raceway|
|June 15||Michigan International Speedway|
|June 22||Sonoma Raceway|
|June 28||Kentucky Speedway|
|July 5||Daytona International Speedway|
|July 13||New Hampshire Motor Speedway|
|July 27||Indianapolis Motor Speedway|
|Aug. 3||Pocono Raceway|
|Aug. 10||Watkins Glen International|
|Aug. 17||Michigan International Speedway|
|Aug. 23||Bristol Motor Speedway|
|Aug. 31||Atlanta Motor Speedway|
|Sept. 6||Richmond International Raceway|
|Sept. 14||Chicagoland Speedway|
|Sept. 21||New Hampshire Motor Speedway|
|Sept. 28||Dover International Speedway|
|Oct. 5||Kansas Speedway|
|Oct. 11||Charlotte Motor Speedway|
|Oct. 19||Talladega Superspeedway|
|Oct. 26||Martinsville Speedway|
|Nov. 2||Texas Motor Speedway|
|Nov. 9||Phoenix International Raceway|
|Nov. 16||Homestead-Miami Speedway|