2017 NASCAR XFINITY Series Owner Standings
MORE: Monster Energy Series owner standings " Camping World owner standings Position Owner Car # Points Ldr Nxt Race Wins Stage Wins Playoff pts Attempts 1 Roger Penske 22 189 0 0 0 3 3 4 2 Chip Ganassi 42 145 -44 -44 0 0 0 4 3 Dale Earnhardt Jr. 1 144 -45 -1 0 2 2 4 4 Rick Hendrick 9 133 -56 -11 0 0 0 4 5 Richard Childress 2 131 -58 -2 0 0 0 4 6 Joe Gibbs 20 126 -63 -5 0 1 1 4 7 Jack Roush 16 121 -68 -5 1 0 5 4 8 Kelley Earnhardt-Miller 7 115 -74 -6 1 0 5 4 9 Jack Roush 6 109 -80 -6 0 0 0 4 10 Richard Childress 21 104 -85 -5 0 0 0 4 11 J D Gibbs 18 100 -89 -4 1 1 1 4 12 Chip Ganassi 48 98 -91 -2 0 0 0 4 13 Richard Childress 3 97 -92 -1 0 0 0 4 14 Joe Gibbs 19 91 -98 -6 0 0 0 4 15 Dale Earnhardt Jr. 5 89 -100 -2 0 0 0 4 16 Maria Gonzalez Hernandez 24 87 -102 -2 0 0 0 4 17 James Whitener 28 84 -105 -3 0 0 0 4 18 Matt Kaulig 11 81 -108 -3 0 0 0 4 19 Gene Haas 00 78 -111 -3 0 0 0 4 20 Richard Childress 33 75 -114 -3 0 0 0 4 21 Richard Childress 62 74 -115 -1 0 0 0 4 22 Johnny Davis 01 64 - 125 -10 0 0 0 4 23 Gary Cogswell 0 60 -129 -4 0 0 0 4 24 Gary Keller 4 60 -129 0 0 0 0 4 25 Roger Penske 12 53 -136 -7 1 0 5 1 26 Rod Sieg 39 53 -136 0 0 0 0 4 27 Fred Biagi 98 52 -137 -1 0 0 0 4 28 Michelle Gosselin 90 52 -137 0 0 0 0 4 29 Tony Stewart 41 51 -138 -1 0 1 1 1 30 Rick Hendrick 88 49 -140 -2 0 0 0 1 31 Mark Smith 14 49 -140 0 0 0 0 4 32 Jimmy Means 52 45 -144 -4 0 0 0 4 33 Danielle Long 40 43 -146 -2 0 0 0 4 34 Maurice Gallagher Jr. 23 43 -146 0 0 0 0 4 35 Bobby Dotter 07 41 -148 -2 0 0 0 4 36 Tony Clements 51 32 -157 -9 0 0 0 4 37 Jessica Smith-McLeod 8 20 -169 -12 0 0 0 4 38 Jessica Smith-McLeod 99 20 -169 0 0 0 0 4 39 B J McLeod 78 16 -173 -4 0 0 0 4 40 Rick Gdovic 146 15 -174 -1 0 0 0 1 41 Lynn Cockrum 25 12 -177 -3 0 0 0 2 42 Mark Smith 44 10 -179 -2 0 0 0 1 43 Mike Harmon 74 6 -183 -4 0 0 0 4 44 Victor Obaika 97 3 -186 -3 0 0 0 4 45 Pamela Sieg 93 3 -186 0 0 0 0 3 46 Danielle Long 13 2 -187 -1 0 0 0 4 47 Cindy Shepherd 89 1 -188 -1 0 0 0 4 48 Victor Obaika 77 0 -189 -1 0 0 0 1
Post-Race Reactions: Pocono Mountains 125
Listen to what all the top finishers ahd to say about today's Pocono Mountains 125 .
Pocono Raceway adds XFINITY race for '16
Pocono Raceway officials announced Tuesday the addition of a NASCAR XFINITY Series event to the track's 2016 racing schedule. The 250-mile race is scheduled for Saturday, June 4, and will be part of a three-race weekend at the 2.5-mile track. The Sprint Cup Series' Axalta "We Paint Winners" 400 is slated for Sunday, June 5 while the Pocono 200 ARCA Racing Series event will kick off the weekend's racing activities. It will be the first appearance for the XFINITY Series at Pocono, which has hosted NASCAR-sanctioned events since 1974. Track president and CEO Brandon Igdalsky said race fans "have been asking for this to happen for several years." Comcast, parent company of series sponsor XFINITY , is based in Philadelphia. "From Day 1 we've been focused on enhancing the way fans experience NASCAR and highlighting the competition and youth in the XFINITY Series," Matt Lederer, director of sports brand marketing for Comcast, said. "The addition of an event at Pocono Raceway in our home state ... will help carry the momentum built in the first year of our partnership into 2016." In addition to the June race weekend, the Pennsylvania 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race is scheduled for July 31 at Pocono, along with the Pocono Mountains 150 Camping World Truck Series race and Modspace 125 ARCA event. Camping World Truck Series teams have been competing at Pocono since 2010 while the ARCA Series began competing at the track in 1987. "Pocono is a very unique track," current XFINITY Series points leader Chris Buescher said. "I'm excited that we are adding a new track to the XFINITY Series schedule. I've raced there a considerable amount in the ARCA Series and have always enjoyed it. It will be a good challenge for the XFINITY teams."
Johnson's passion for fitness inspires Hendrick teammates
BUY TICKETS: See the races in Las Vegas LAS VEGAS – If you were to break out the bicycle in the infield of any given race track on a Saturday morning or afternoon, you'd likely have some elite company. Matt Kenseth has embarked on both long and short cycling excursions. Kasey Kahne could show up, or Trevor Bayne. But perhaps one of the most familiar faces and leaders among the cycling groups at the track is reigning Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson. A seasoned athlete in a variety of athletic pursuits from cycling to running to snowboarding in his new home of Aspen, Colorado, Johnson has accomplished some feats that only experienced athletes could achieve: He and Kenseth completed a 130-mile ride for charity in March 2016 from Asheville, North Carolina, to Charlotte, North Carolina. He celebrated his 40th birthday in 2015 with a 101.2-mile bike ride, and joined Hendrick Motorsports teammate Kahne for Johnson's first of many triathlons. That first one was in Charleston, South Carolina, in 2012, just one day after competing in the Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway. The driver of the No. 48 Kobalt Chevrolet supplements his regular weekday training with these group cycling or individual running sessions during downtime at the track. "It's easy to sleep in in the motor home or sit on the couch between qualifying and practice and eat," Johnson told NASCAR.com on Friday morning at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, the site of Sunday's Kobalt 400. "There's a four-hour window there; you could be out on the bike, go for a run, burn some calories instead of ingesting them." But the group rides at the track accomplish more than just an elevated heart rate -- even with a group of competitive NASCAR drivers riding. "It seems that during the week we're serious about those disciplines, kind of putting in your gym time, your speed work -- the weekend rides are much more (easygoing)," Johnson said. "So, we'll sit side-by-side, chat, talk, talk about life. It's much more of a social thing than really a hardcore ride. "Granted, we do race in Pocono, we do race in upstate New York. There are some areas, what I'm getting at, where there's some serious climbing. And the competitive spirit kind of kicks in and guys kind of try to bury each other and race up mountains ." It was the social aspect of physical fitness that became Johnson's main case for his Hendrick Motorsports teammates to commit to a company-mandated workout on a regular basis. "For me, the social component is what has made this last so long for me," Johnson said. "I think we all start a crash diet, we all say we're going to the gym and you're lucky to make three or four months because it's kind of monotonous and not a lot of fun. There's not a social element to it. "So, I pushed hard to set some minimum requirements for our Hendrick drivers and then trying to get us together. Weekend rides, there are some great social media apps that keep you connected with what your friends are doing. You can follow them, they can follow you. The one we like to use is Strava and it's amazing if you can just have a little spin on it and make it a social thing, your interest goes up tremendously. You have accountability and before you know it, you're putting in quite a few hours a week and you're pretty fit." Johnson's teammate Dale Earnhardt Jr. discussed the new workout plan at length on his Dirty Mo Radio podcast Monday. The drivers have set hours for cardio and strength exercises each week that they must complete and log into the Strava app. The drivers also have access to Hendrick Motorsports' top-notch facilities, trainers and nutritionists used by the pit crews, as well as Johnson's own personal triathlon trainer Jamey Yon, to help aid their health journeys. RELATED: Junior talks about his first cycling trip Earnhardt took his first cycling trip with Johnson last weekend at Atlanta Motor Speedway, pulling out the bike that "Seven-Time" gifted him about a year ago. The trip began with the humorous struggle of getting Earnhardt comfortable with the spandex cycling attire. "I told Jimmie, I said, 'Look, I'm going to meet you outside the track,' " Earnhardt said on the podcast. "Ain't no way in hell I'm going to let anybody see me ride through the infield wearing this bike gear, spandex stuff." Johnson smiled at the experience. "I couldn't believe my eyes, to be honest," Johnson said of his reaction to Junior agreeing to a cycling trip. "He was a little worried about the attire, but I promised him you really feel weird standing around other people in street clothes when you're in the attire. When you're in a group of guys, proper attire really makes a big difference. "So, he cleared that hurdle, which I wasn't sure we could get on Ride 1, and through the course of the ride, his comfort grew tremendously. The speed came up and his bike handling skills and stuff came right around. So, he's excited to ride this weekend and looking forward to getting him on a bike again." Hardest part of cycling? Being brave/crazy/stupid enough 2 wear spandex The hills R the 2nd hardest part. Me & our awesome pilot Jeff. pic.twitter.com/qzemyzgKlr — Dale Earnhardt Jr. (@DaleJr) March 11, 2017 Johnson's passion for physical fitness is evident, his love for outdoor activities strong. He uses activities as a way to socialize, train and escape from the stresses of his high-speed career. "It's been really good for me physically, but more mentally on a lot of levels," Johnson said. "I can have an afternoon to clear my mind, I find that all I think about is the race car and I get my thoughts in order and really handle the race car situation to the best of my ability." But as Johnson's interests in the field vary and grow, his passion also has transcended as a way to help others: In 2016, Johnson lent his personal trainer Yon to No. 41 crew chief and longtime friend Tony Gibson and offered to help him get on track physically. RELATED: Crew chief's health boost from Johnson "He's like, 'Look, I've been thinking about you for the last three weeks,' and he said I want to get you healthy," Gibson said prior to the start of the 2016 season. "He said, 'We've known each other since I got into this and you've been a great friend to me.' He said, 'I'm worried about you. I'm worried about your health and I want to see you get healthy.' So I'm like, 'OK.' The next step was we got together and he's like, 'I'll take care of everything, I'll handle everything. We'll use my trainer. You just have to do it.' "So I said, 'You know, if he's willing to go to the length of that and put that much effort into it, then I'm a fool if I don't.' So I took him up on it and I've been losing weight ever since." But while Johnson enjoys helping others achieve their physical goals and has many fitness goals after he's done driving ("there's quite a few endurance races that I want to do from triathlons to mountain bike races," he says), he doesn't necessarily envision a career in personal training after he's hung up his fire suit. "I love helping people -- that's in my DNA," Johnson said. "Fitness has been a hobby of mine, a passion of mine for a while now and I've been able to influence many. But I just enjoy being there for others and tell my story -- maybe I can be there for them." &amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;lt;/p&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt;
NASCAR launches NASCAR TrackPass to expand reach of live racing content
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Feb. 22, 2017) -- NASCAR TrackPass™, the sport's first digital subscription product developed specifically for the international market, will now offer live racing action to more NASCAR® fans than ever before. Fans around the world can watch all 38 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series™ and 33 NASCAR XFINITY Series™ events either through NASCAR's local television partner or by subscribing to NASCAR TrackPass. The product will be available in 120 countries and territories at launch, with plans to continue expanding the NASCAR TrackPass footprint throughout 2017. NASCAR TrackPass will offer full race replays and features like a live leaderboard and highlights to give fans the complete race experience. International NASCAR fans in most territories outside the U.S. and Canada can go to TrackPass.NASCAR.com to subscribe to the product or download the application for Android and iOS through the iTunes and Google Play stores. Subscription costs start at $ 125 per year and $15 per month and vary by individual country and territory. "Exploring new distribution channels for race content across both broadcast and digital platforms allows NASCAR to continue strengthening its global presence and diversify the sport’s fan base," said Steve Herbst, senior vice president, broadcasting and production at NASCAR. "Given their experience in the sport and expertise around live streaming, NBC was a natural choice to lead our development of NASCAR TrackPass, providing our international fans more choice than ever before." NASCAR Track Pass is powered by Playmaker Media, NBC Sports Digital's technology service providing end-to-end support for companies in need of best-in-class live streaming and VOD solutions. International viewers can subscribe now to kick off the 2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season by watching the DAYTONA 500® at Daytona International Speedway this Sunday, Feb. 26.
Snapshot: Pennsylvania 400
All the top storylines heading into Sunday's Pennsylvania 400 -- the 21st race of the 2016 Sprint Cup Series season and second event at Pocono.
Best in-car audio from the Pennsylvania 400
From weather delays to fierce on-track action check out the best in-car audio from the Pennsylvania 400 at Pocono Raceway.
Post-Race Reactions: Pocono Mountains 150
Clint Bowyer and Johnny Sauter talk about their solid runs in the Pocono Mountains 150 at Pocono Raceway, a track Sauter describes as one he isn't particularly fond of.
Pocono to hold qualifying and race on same day
BUY TICKETS: See the action at Pocono Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series fans should be ready for a full day of action at Pocono Raceway on July 30. The track announced Monday that both qualifying for the Monster Energy Series and the Pennsylania 400 race will be held Sunday, July 30. Thus far, Pocono is the only track to announce it will have qualifying and the race on the same day for the sport's top series. On a t ypical race weekend, Monster Energy Series qualifying is held on Friday afternoon. The schedule for Saturday, July 29, will include Monster Energy Series practices paired with NASCAR Camping World Truck Series ' qualifying and the Pocono Mountains 150 . In NASCAR's first trip of the year to Pocono Raceway June 9-11, the track will operate under the standard schedule where Monster Energy Series qualifying is held on Friday with a practice as well as a NASCAR XFINITY Series practice. Saturday will see more practice time for the Monster Energy Series as well as XFINITY Series qualifying and the Pocono Green 250 race.
RELATED: NASCAR 101 NASCAR sanctions more than 1,200 races in more than 30 U.S. states, Canada, Mexico and Europe. Known for its passionate fan base, one-of-a-kind playoff format, development of the modern sports sponsorship and commitment to enhancing auto racing through technology, NASCAR produces many of the most highly attended sporting events in the world. NASCAR did not gain the success or popularity it has today overnight. The sport has evolved to entertain its fans and continuously prosper. Early stock car racing In the years immediately following World War II, stock car racing was experiencing the greatest popularity it had ever seen. Tracks throughout the country were drawing more drivers and bigger crowds. Nonetheless, there was a serious lack of organization. From track to track, rules were different. Some tracks were makeshift facilities, producing one big show at a county fair or something similar to capitalize on the crowds flocking to the events. Other tracks were more suited to handle the cars, but not the crowds. Some could manage both, but did little to adhere to rules set by other tracks. Bill France Sr. organizes NASCAR In December of 1947, Bill France Sr., of Daytona Beach, Florida, organized a meeting at the Streamline Hotel, across the street from the Atlantic Ocean, to discuss the problems facing stock car racing. France had come to Florida from Washington, D.C., in 1935. He operated a local service station and also promoted races on the city's famed beach-road courses, often racing himself. He was a man of strong will -- and ambition. Thus, by the time that meeting at the Streamline Hotel was completed, the National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing was born. Few knew when the meeting adjourned if the organization would be successful. In fact, there were skeptics who believed it never would work. Not even France, who believed a sanctioning body was exactly what stock car racing needed, could have envisioned what NASCAR has become today. Things came together quickly. The first NASCAR-sanctioned race was held on Daytona's beach-road course Feb. 15, 1948, just two months after the organizational meeting. Red Byron, a stock car legend from Atlanta, won the event in a Ford Modified. Six days later on Feb. 21, 1948, the National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing was incorporated. The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series is born It was 1949, however, when what is now the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series , the premier racing division in America, was born. Jim Roper of Great Bend, Kansas, was the winner of the first ever NASCAR Grand National event, held at the Charlotte Fairgrounds on June 19, 1949. A tremendous crowd attended the event to see race cars that looked like passenger cars compete door-to-door. The new racing series was off-and-running. And it was an immediate success. Plans were made to bring bigger, faster races to bigger, hungrier crowds and less than a year later (1950), the country's first asphalt superspeedway, Darlington Raceway in South Carolina, opened its doors for the new division. The first decade for the premier series was one of tremendous growth. Characters became heroes and fans hung on every turn of the wheel, watching drivers manhandle cars at speeds fans wished they could legally run themselves. Names like Lee Petty, Fireball Roberts, Buck Baker, Herb Thomas, the Flock brothers, Bill Rexford, Paul Goldsmith and others became as well-known to race fans as Willie Mays, Mickey Mantle and Duke Snider were to baseball fans. Daytona International Speedway ushers in a new age of speed Looking to the future, and invigorated by the success of Darlington, Bill France Sr. began construction of a 2.5-mile, high-banked superspeedway four miles off the beach in Daytona Beach. France had helped lead the fight to keep racing affiliated with the city. When those looking to set land speed records began opting for the Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah so the incoming and outgoing tides at Daytona Beach would not be a factor, the city wanted to maintain one of its main attractions -- fast cars and the beach. By the end of NASCAR's first decade, the city not only had held on to its racing roots, but had outgrown the beach and, in 1959, moved events to Daytona International Speedway . With its long back straightaway and sweeping high-banked turns of more than 30 degrees, the 2.5-mile tri-oval was one of the largest speedways in the world. The first Daytona 500 In the first race, fans were treated to something that each year still brings millions of fans to NASCAR races -- close competition. The first Daytona 500 didn't end, technically, for three days. It took that long for NASCAR officials to study a photograph of the finish between Petty and Johnny Beauchamp before declaring Petty the winner. The hook had been set. The following year (1960), superspeedways were opened just outside Atlanta and Charlotte. ABC televised the 1961 Firecracker 250 from Daytona Beach as part of its "Wide World of Sports." As the sport expanded, new heroes emerged. Lee Petty's son Richard, who would eventually be referred to as "The King" of stock car racing, Buddy Baker, Cale Yarborough, Ned Jarrett, David Pearson and Bobby Allison led NASCAR racing through an era that featured a schedule of more than 60 races a year on tracks from Florida to California to Maine. Fan interest grew and the demand for bigger, faster tracks was heard. In 1969, France opened the 2.66-mile Alabama International Motor Speedway (now known as Talladega Superspeedway ), the largest and fastest motorsports oval in the world. New tracks sprang up in Brooklyn, Michigan, (70 miles Southwest of Detroit), Dover, Delaware, (between Philadelphia and Baltimore) and Pocono, Pennsylvania , two hours from New York City). Bill France Jr. becomes NASCAR President The decade of the 1970s brought further change, including one at the top when Bill France Sr. passed the torch of leadership of NASCAR to his son Bill Jr. on Jan. 10, 1972. Corporate sponsorship of the series by the R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company through its Winston brand began in 1971 and NASCAR's premier division became known as the NASCAR Winston Cup Series. Reynolds' involvement later led to the NASCAR Winston West Series and the NASCAR Winston Racing Series (now NASCAR Dodge Weekly Series) -- weekly events held at tracks nationwide with drivers vying for 10 regional titles and a national championship. In 1976, NASCAR's premier division took the lead in worldwide motorsports attendance for the first time with more than 1.4 million spectators making their way to events, according to figures from the Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company. That lead never has been relinquished. Television exposure grew as well. The 1979 Daytona 500 became the first 500-mile race in history to be telecast live in its entirety. In 1981, NASCAR moved its annual awards ceremony to New York City from Daytona Beach for the first time. By the mid 1980s, Fortune 500 companies not only were involved in sponsoring NASCAR, but individual races and teams as well. Drivers such as Darrell Waltrip, Dale Earnhardt, Bill Elliott and others were rising to challenge Petty and Allison and Yarborough, displaying the colors of detergents and coffees and cereals on the hoods of their cars while doing it. Major consumer packaging companies like Kellogg's, General Foods, and Procter & Gamble were realizing what Bill France knew in the late 1940s -- stock car racing had a fervently loyal fan following. The XFINITY Series debuts In 1982, NASCAR consolidated the Late Model Sportsman Division into a new series. Since rising costs had made weekly racing for the Late Model stock cars difficult, the idea behind the creation of the series was to build big races, and to bring all of the regional-stars of the series together for all of the races. Anheuser-Busch, Inc. of St. Louis, Missouri, became the sponsor of the new NASCAR Budweiser Late Model Sportsman Series. In 1984, the Busch brand took over the sponsorship in what would become the NASCAR Busch Series. Starting in 2007, the series became known as the NASCAR Nationwide Series, via a new sponsorship deal with one the world's largest insurance providers. At the start of 2015, the series changed to the NASCAR XFINITY Series. Expansion continues through the 1990s, includes Indianapolis By 1989, just 10 years after the first 500-mile race to be broadcast live flag-to-flag, every race on the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series schedule was televised, nearly all of them live. As the decade of the 1990s began, perhaps no one but the sports visionaries could have imagined the growth NASCAR would undertake. Without question it was an exciting time. NASCAR began its meteoric rise by expansion in 1993 to New Hampshire International Speedway -- 70 miles north of Boston -- and in 1994, to the famed "Brickyard," Indianapolis Motor Speedway . The Camping World Truck Series starts up In May of 1994, NASCAR introduced a new series, the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series, involving full-sized, full-bodied pickup trucks. After several exhibition events, the first points event in the new series was held in February of 1995 in what would become the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. The NASCAR Lifestyle becomes a national phenomenon At the same time, NASCAR's at-track attendance was growing monumentally. The NASCAR Lifestyle was becoming a national phenomenon with cover stories in Forbes and Sports Illustrated. To help feed the tremendous growth, NASCAR launched its official website in 1995 ( www.nascar.com ) and in 1997, NASCAR branched out again, adding races in top 10 markets like Los Angeles, Dallas/Ft. Worth and a second date in New Hampshire. The 1998 season marked the celebration of NASCAR's 50th anniversary, honoring NASCAR's past, present and future. NASCAR's top division expanded once again, this time to Las Vegas. From 1993 to 1998, the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series ' at-track attendance alone grew 57 percent (by 2.2 million) to over 6.3 million and its top three divisions combined grew a staggering 80 percent (by 4.1 million), to over 9.3 million. Topping off NASCAR's explosion in the '90s was the announcement in November 1999 of a consolidated television package with FOX Sports/FX and NBC Sports/TNT for NASCAR's top two series beginning in 2001. At the same time, DaimlerChrysler announced intentions to return its Dodge nameplate to NASCAR's top division for 2001, after a 15-year hiatus. In 2007, a new TV package was introduced, with ABC and ESPN returning to the NASCAR fold. As the sport's fan base grew, NASCAR grew internally as well. In November of 2000, Mike Helton became the third president in NASCAR history as the torch of leadership passed to a non-France family member for the first time. Bill France became Chairman and CEO, leading the newly created NASCAR Board of Directors. By the turn of the century, new stars emerged such as Jeff Gordon , Bobby Labonte and second-generation driver Dale Jarrett. NASCAR's drivers, teams and tracks once again saw unprecedented exposure, this time with the aid of an expanded 36-race schedule and its new television package in 2001. The TV story was proving a remarkable success as viewership for the Daytona 500 grew 48 percent (over 6 million) to 18.7 million viewers between 1993 and 2002. When FOX Sports aired its first Daytona 500 in 2001, viewership increased 32 percent (4.1 million) to over 17 million from the 2000 broadcast. Brian France becomes NASCAR Chairman and CEO In 2003, NASCAR made two major announcements to help the dawn of the new era become even clearer. NASCAR announced in June that Nextel would become the new series sponsor in 2004, replacing R.J. Reynolds' Winston brand after 33 years. Three months later in September, Brian Z. France was named as NASCAR's CEO and Chairman of the Board replacing his father, Bill France. A steady parade of changes has followed. The Chase for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup was announced at the start of 2004, ushering in a new format to determine the champion of NASCAR's premier series. In 2006, Toyota announced a move into all three of NASCAR's national series. In 2007 it was announced that the premier series' name would be changed to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series beginning in 2008. In addition, Nationwide Insurance was announced as the replacement for Anheuser-Busch as main sponsor of NASCAR's series born from Late Models in 1982. The 2007 season also marked the beginning of NASCAR's new car in premier series competition, a car designed to be safer than ever while also reducing costs to compete -- all the while enhancing the racing itself. The new car could not slow down Jimmie Johnson who captured a record five consecutive championships from 2006-2010, becoming only the second driver to win three consecutive titles (Cale Yarborough 1976-1978). During the late 2000s, NASCAR began further expanding by creating series internationally. The NASCAR Canadian Tire Series and the NASCAR Toyota Series (Mexico) launched their inaugural seasons in 2007. The sanctioning body extended its reach across the Atlantic when it founded the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series in 2012. Today, NASCAR runs three national series, four regional series, one local grassroots series and three international series. Winning formula: Gen-6 car, new Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup format, new series sponsorship In 2013, NASCAR continued enhance its racing, debuting its Gen-6 car that enhanced body designs to better resemble the cars found in showrooms across the United States and improve on-track performance. NASCAR also secured its television rights through 2024 by agreeing to a 10-year rights deal with NBC Universal and an eight-year rights extension with FOX. To emphasize winning races, NASCAR created a new Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup playoff format for 2014 and unveiled its new grid format for advancing drivers. In 2015, XFINITY replaced Nationwide as the title sponsor for the series "Where Names are Made." Late in 2016, France would introduce Monster Energy as only the third premier series entitlement sponsor in league history. The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series would help usher in a new era of NASCAR, which included an enhanced-race format that saw each race run in three stages. Resources NASCAR on Facebook NASCAR on Twitter NASCAR on YouTube
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