Further changes to the Nitro Rallycross format have been made ahead of this weekend’s third event at Wild Horse pass in Phoenix, Arizona.
At the last round, inclement weather led to the cancellation of solo qualifying with drivers’ best times from practice determining their qualifying starting position.
That’s now written into the regulations as standard practice from this round going forward.
For the heat races that follow the one-on-one battle bracket races on Sunday, now only one driver will advance from each race rather than two.
Though the subsequent semifinal format will remain unchanged, the final will now only be made up of eight cars rather than 10, meaning that there is extra impetus to win one of the early heat races. Two will still advance from the semifinals.
For the final grid, the front row will comprise the winners of the first two heats, with the better qualifier of those being awarded the pole position. That format will follow throughout the rest of the grid, with the higher qualifier from each stage (semifinals, last chance qualifier) starting from the pole side of the grid.
For the last chance qualifier (LCQ), there will now be two LCQ races if the field consists of 15 or more cars – this weekend’s event will have 15 starters.
The winner of each LCQ race will advance to the final, where they will start from the back row of the grid. For events with one LCQ race, the top two finishers from that race will advance.
For NRX Next, grid order for the heat races will also be determined by practice times as opposed to times set in a designated qualifying session.
There will be two heat races, the grid being split with four cars in each race, with the winners of each locking out the front row of the grid for the final. Again, the driver with the highest qualifying time (from practice) will start from pole position.
Drivers that finish second in those opening heats will get the poles for the semifinals, with the top-two semi finishers also advancing to the final.
The remainder of the field will then take part in an LCQ with the top-four from that contest advancing to the final.