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For the first time since 1975, NASCAR changed the points system. They are going with a points system that is inverted from the driver's actual finish. If you finish first, you will receive 43 points. If you finish last, you will receive only one point.
It does not stop there. The winner can earn a possible 48 points: three bonus points for a victory, one point for leading a lap and one point for leading the most laps. So when you win a race, you are receiving a total of 47 points. In the previous system it would be 190 points.
Those four bonus points are a higher percentage than receiving 10 bonus points in the previous points system. It is a full four percent higher. Second place can earn as high as 44 points. In the previous system second place would earn 180 points. This gives a bigger incentive to win the race.
This change is huge. Most fans could not understand the previous points system. The change will make it more interactive for fans. You can easily figure out the points instead of waiting for Fox, ABC, ESPN or TNT to place the points on the screen during or at the end of the race.
The downside to the change? To me there is none. Most "diehard" fans will argue that this takes away from the history and the mystique that NASCAR created over the years.
Who cares? Every sport in the world has changed. NFL created instant replay along with MLB, the NBA brought in a three-point line and the NHL changed the rules to create more scoring. None of these sports have diminished since the changes have been made. In fact, most will argue that the changes have helped the sports.
I am hard pressed to find a fan even from the '70s, or a fan that just came into the sport within the last year, that understands the point system that was used for the past 35 years.