DAYTONA BEACH, Fla., Jan. 8 (UPI) -- NASCAR's top series will have more than just a new name this season. It will have a playoff-style format to determine its champion.
The exact format has not been determined, but the Nextel Cup series will use the final 10 races of the season as a "playoff," NASCAR vice president of corporate communications Jim Hunter said Thursday.
"Yes, we are committed to changing the format we use to determine the champion," Hunter said. "We're looking at a number to make sure we don't exclude anybody in the 10 who would have a chance to win the championship."
The decision means NASCAR will abandon the season-long points chase that generated controversy last year, when Matt Kenseth captured the title despite winning only one of 36 races. Ryan Newman led the series with eight victories but finished a distant sixth in the Winston Cup standings.