Officials at New Smyrna Speedway (FL) have been searching for a way to bring more excitement and strategy back into the 51st Annual Governor’s Cup 200. On Monday, the track announced a procedural change that they believe will do just that.
The 200-lap Super Late Model race, scheduled for November 12-13, will now feature controlled cautions.
Over the past few years, Super Late Model races in the Southeast have consisted of live pit stop races. The controlled cautions will add strategy back into the race and provide excitement for the fans traveling to New Smyrna Beach, Florida. In addition, the controlled pit stops helps lower the costs for teams hoping to be competitive in the prestigious Late Model race.
After much consideration Competition Director Ricky Brooks and Track General Manager Kim Brown decided to institute the controlled cautions concept.
The new procedure will consist of controlled pit stops at this event, in which no car may lose a lap under caution while pitting. In addition, no driver will lose positions in regards to other cars that pitted during the controlled caution period.
If a green flag run goes 50 laps without caution, a competition caution will be utilized in next 15 laps. For example, if there is a caution at lap 22 and the green is displayed again on lap 30, if no caution falls prior to lap 80, a competition caution will be displayed prior to lap 95.
Pits will be open for a minimum of four laps under each caution unless declared a “quickie yellow” by race control. A quickie yellow will be when a simple caution occurs within 15 laps of the previous caution period.
“The idea came from ARCA Midwest Tour president Gregg McKarns and we used this format at the All American 400 in October of this year and made for one exciting race,” Brooks said in a track press release. “Teams especially liked it because it keeps the cost down and puts its back in their hands.”
Track Manager Kim Brown added, “I think it is a great idea to add excitement and strategy back into the race. The guys will really have to use their heads with only eight tires in the race. Racers and crew chiefs will have to decide on each pit stop exactly what will be the best move to make to advance in track position. My goal has always been to keep the cost of racing down for racers, especially in these big races.”
The 51st Annual Governor’s Cup 200 is now just a few days away. The weekend kicks off on Friday, November 11 with Open Practice for all divisions including Super Late Models.
Saturday, November 12 will have a full lineup including the Super Stock 50, Modified 75, Bomber 20 and Pro Late Model 100, along with Super Late Model qualifying.
Sunday, November 13th will feature the 200-lap Super Late Model race with $15,000 on the line. The Sportsman will also be in action for their final 75-lap race of the season.
Speed51.com will have live Trackside Now coverage of both Saturday and Sunday’s racing from New Smyrna Speedway. Stay with 51 all week long for additional news leading into the 51st Annual Florida Governor’s Cup 200.
-New Smyrna Speedway Press Release. Photo credit: Speed51.com