Rich Vleck, Rochester, NY (April 25, 2011)- Even though the Patriots operate under a new name in 2011, many of the rules and procedures that have helped to set the foundation of the series will stay in tact. Some changes have been made though which should make the racing even better this year.
The Patriot Sprint Tour (PST) Rulebook has been finalized heading into the season opener on Saturday, May 7 at Black Rock Speedway in Dundee, NY. Here are some of the alterations from years past that are worth noting.
Qualifying Format- Passing points remain an important part of the Patriots procedure, with a new twist in 2011. This year, a specified number of cars will transfer from a particular heat race to the A-Main. For example, at events that require three heats, the top six finishers from each heat will make the A-Main, but will still be aligned by their passing point total.
Buy-In Provisionals- For the first time since 2006, regular supporters of the Patriots will have the ability to use a provisional if needed on two occasions. Drivers must be in the top 20 of the point standings to be provisional eligible. This will help to ensure the stars of the PST are in the A-Main.
“Double Cone” Starts/Restarts- The PST will employ a pair of restart cones or lines to create a ‘box’ for starts and restarts. The leader of the race, or the inside car on an original start, will dictate where in the box they will accelerate to bring the field to life. This is sure to free up the turn four region.
Points Distribution- For the third year in a row, the Patriots will employ a different point formula. The format used through 2009 had a smaller drop off from first to last than the 2010 version. This year’s gap is just about in the middle taking the best parts of each.
Work Area- The designated work zone will still be in place in 2011, enabling teams an opportunity to stay in their final event. The work area can now be utilized in B-Main competition, as well as the A-Main, but with limitations. A driver will only be guaranteed 2 minutes for service once per event and if there are less than 10 laps remaining in that event, that time will be reduced to 1:15.
Top Wing Wicker Bill- Up to a 2” wicker bill will once again be permitted at series events after a year hiatus. The 1” wicker bill on the front wing will remain the same.
The complete rule book can be found under the rules tab of www.PatriotSprintTour.com. Don’t forget to follow the Patriots on Twitter or become a friend of the series on Facebook.