The 2022 NASCAR All-Star Race brings together the best drivers on the circuit in a format that will challenge everyone over the course of 125 laps.
Incentives are attached to each of the first three stages of Sunday's exhibition race at Texas Motor Speedway.
The winners of the first three 25-lap stages will start in the first three positions on the grid for the final 50-lap sprint for the race title.
The shortness of the stages combined with the toughness of passing at Texas makes being at the front of the field a must from Lap 1.
Kyle Larson has won two of the last three All-Star Races. He captured the first checkered flag at Texas in 2021. The event was previously held at Charlotte from 1987-2019 and Bristol in 2020.
The All-Star race participants qualified by either winning a race in the last season or taking first in the Cup Series or the All-Star race.
Four additional drivers will be added to the field through the All-Star Open. The three stage winners and the first-place finisher in a fan vote advance to the All-Star Race.
NASCAR All-Star Race Info
Date: Sunday, May 22
Start Time: 8 p.m. ET
Live Stream: FoxSports.com and Fox Sports app
Martin Truex Jr.
The starting grid for the All-Star Race will be determined by a qualifying session on Sunday.
All of the drivers in the field will take part in single-car, one-lap qualifying drives around Texas Motor Speedway.
The top eight participants from that round of qualifying enter an intense fight for the pole position.
The eight drivers will be placed into an elimination bracket in which the winner starts first on the grid for the All-Star Race.
The head-to-head battles in the final part of qualifying feature a four-tire pit stop and a race down pit road with no speed limit.
Whichever drivers are the fastest around the circuit in that format advance to the next round, and the winner of the elimination bracket takes pole.
The losers in the first round of the elimination bracket will be lined up from fifth to eighth, while the two second-round losers will be third and fourth on the grid.
Then the drivers have to take on a 125-lap gauntlet around Texas Motor Speedway that is split up into four stages.
Stages 1, 2 and 3 will be 25 laps, and the winners of each stage will start first, second and third on the grid for the final stage.
There is one stipulation added to that. The Stage 1 and 2 winners must finish inside the top 15 in each following stage to confirm their spot at the front for Stage 4.
That should be a fairly simple task for the stage winners since there are only 24 cars in the field compared to a normal points race that has over 35 participants.
The fourth starter on the grid for Stage 4 will be the driver whose team completed the fastest pit stop following Stage 2. That driver also has the 15th or better stipulation attached to him.
If any of the stage winners fail to reach those criteria, they will start where they left pit road after Stage 3 and no replacements will be named to the front of the grid.
The All-Star Race comes with plenty of rules to keep track of, but the format is designed to produce excitement for each of the 125 laps.
The format could be confusing at times, but if it delivers throughout the 125-lap race, it could be a sign for the future of the All-Star Race.