Fast facts for NASCAR’s team owner charter system

NASCAR Chairman & CEO Brian France joined with Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series team owners on Tuesday, February 9, 2016 in Charlotte, North Carolina, to announce a landmark long-term agreement on an owner Charter system.

The agreement provides teams with an increased business certainty and the ability to work more closely with NASCAR to continue to produce best-in-class racing.

Below are fast facts about the comprehensive agreement.

This long-term agreement is for nine years.

There are 36 Charter teams. The number 36 was not pre-determined — NASCAR analyzed which teams showed a long-term commitment to the sport by attempting to qualify every week for the past three years. That criteria yielded 36 Charters. 

A Charter guarantees entry into the field of every Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series points race. Qualifying speeds still determine the lineup.

 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series fields will shift from 43 cars to 40 cars. That means 36 Charter teams are guaranteed to make every points race, and four non-Charter (or “open”) teams will complete the rest of the field.

Charter owners may transfer their Charter to another team, for one full season, once over the first five years of the agreement.

Charter teams are held to a minimum performance standard. If a Charter team finishes in the bottom three of the owner standings among all 36 Charter teams for three consecutive years, NASCAR has a right to remove the charter.

Teams may sell their Charters on the open market.

Organizations now have a hard cap of four cars; there will be no fifth car for rookie drivers.