NASCAR revealed the official race format for the 2024 Busch Light Clash exhibition event, which is set to take place on February 4 at the LA Memorial Coliseum, and to be honest, there were not a whole lot of changes to the overall race format.
The biggest shift from the 2023 edition of the event was marked by the reduction of the Main Event field size, which will shrink from 27 cars to 23 cars this year.
The reduction in field size for the Main Event should only heighten the intensity in the Heat Races and Last Chance Qualifier (LCQ) event as fewer cars in the Main Event means a bigger chance that drivers will need to make something happen with their backs against the wall.
The third annual Clash at the LA Memorial Coliseum, once again, will be open to only the 36 Chartered NASCAR Cup Series teams.
Aside from the change in the starting field size for the Main Event, here are the only other changes to the format for 2024:
- No more single-car qualifying. Heat Race starting lineups will now be determined by speeds from final practice.
- The race will feature one 75-lap LCQ with the top-two drivers from the LCQ advancing to the Main Event (Last year, there were two LCQs, where the top-three from both events advanced).
The format for the Heat Races will remain unchanged. The four Heat Races will take place on Saturday, February 3rd, and will be 25-lap races. Only green flag laps will count in the Heat Races, which means the race will have to end under green flag conditions.
The top-five finishers from each Heat Race will advance to the Main Event.
The 20 drivers that advance to the field from the Heat Races, and the two that lock in by way of the LCQ will be joined by the driver highest in the 2023 NASCAR Cup Series point standings that has yet to lock into the field.
As for the Main Event, which will be contested on Sunday, February 4, that race will once again be 150 laps, with a timed half-time break coming at Lap 75. Only green flag laps will count in the Main Event, and the race, like the Heat Races, must end under green flag conditions.
Tune into the 2024 Busch Light Clash at the LA Memorial Coliseum on February 4 at 8:00 PM ET on FOX. SiriusXM NASCAR Radio will provide the radio broadcast of the event.
Photo Credit: Jared C. Tilton, Getty Images