Here’s A Look at How The Charter System Works In The NASCAR Cup Series


Introduced in 2016, the Charter System provides NASCAR Cup Series teams with increased business certainty and the ability to work more closely with NASCAR to produce best-in-class racing.

The Charter System affords Charter teams that remain in good standing more predictable revenue over the nine years of the agreement. Along with improved financial certainty, the framework is designed to increase the long-term market value of teams and provide the ability to plan farther ahead with existing, new and prospective partners.

Each Charter team has a guaranteed entry into the field of every NASCAR Cup Series points race. To maintain the historical openness of NASCAR racing, the balance of the field will be open for teams who do not hold Charters. These Open teams will compete for the remaining starting spots and positions in the race through Pole Award qualifying.

Below is the complete list of the 2021 NASCAR Cup Series Charters:  

Charter #2021 Car #Charter Owner2021 Operator
143Richard Petty MotorsportsRichard Petty Motorsports
251Petty Ware RacingPetty Ware Racing
33Richard Childress RacingRichard Childress Racing
400StarCom RacingStarCom Racing
58Richard Childress RacingRichard Childress Racing
62Team PenskeTeam Penske
722Team PenskeTeam Penske
824Hendrick MotorsportsHendrick Motorsports
99Hendrick MotorsportsHendrick Motorsports
105Hendrick MotorsportsHendrick Motorsports
1148Hendrick MotorsportsHendrick Motorsports
1212Team PenskeTeam Penske
136Roush Fenway RacingRoush Fenway Racing
1417Roush Fenway RacingRoush Fenway Racing
151Chip Ganassi RacingChip Ganassi Racing
1642Chip Ganassi RacingChip Ganassi Racing
1711Joe Gibbs RacingJoe Gibbs Racing
1818Joe Gibbs RacingJoe Gibbs Racing
1920Joe Gibbs RacingJoe Gibbs Racing
2041Stewart-Haas RacingStewart-Haas Racing
2119Joe Gibbs RacingJoe Gibbs Racing
224Stewart-Haas RacingStewart-Haas Racing
2310Stewart-Haas RacingStewart-Haas Racing
2414Stewart-Haas RacingStewart-Haas Racing
2599Spire SportsTrackhouse Racing
2634Front Row MotorsportsFront Row Motorsports
2752Rick Ware RacingRick Ware Racing
2847JTG Daugherty RacingJTG Daugherty Racing
2977Spire SportsSpire Sports
302323XI Racing23XI Racing
3121Wood Brothers RacingWood Brothers Racing
3253Rick Ware RacingRick Ware Racing
3338Front Row MotorsportsFront Row Motorsports
347Spire SportsSpire Sports
3578Live Fast MotorsportsLive Fast Motorsports
3615/27/54Rick Ware RacingRick Ware Racing

Qualifying – NASCAR Cup Series

Thirty-six Charter teams will be assigned a starting position with four Open teams eligible for the remaining positions in the 40-car field. Qualifying results will determine the Open team starting positions. If qualifying is cancelled due to weather, the lineup will be set per the NASCAR Rule Book.

Open team eligibility will be determined for races without qualifying as follows:

  • Daytona 500 – qualifying and the Duels are scheduled, but if neither takes place for any reason the four eligible Open teams will be determined per the rulebook based on the 2020 owner point standings.
  • Race #2 and #3 – A combination of 2020 and 2021 owner points will be used to determine Open team eligibility.  Up to two Open teams will earn a starting position based on 2020 owner points and the remaining Open teams will be determined based on the current 2021 owner points.
  • Race #4 through #36 – If qualifying is not scheduled, or cancelled for any reason, the current 2021 owner points will determine race eligibility for the four Open positions.

Metric Qualifying – NASCAR Cup Series

Race Eligibility

Charter Teams and the highest ranked Open Teams in the NASCAR Cup Series Team Owners Points Standings will be eligible for this Event for a maximum entry list of 40 vehicles.

Starting Line Up Procedure

Performance Metrics Qualifying is a total number based on the previous Event. 15% of a fastest lap time position, 25% of a final driver race finish position, 25% of a final owner race finish position and 35% of the Owner Points position.  Any ties will be broken by the rulebook.

The 40 eligible vehicles will have their starting positions determined by Performance Metrics Qualifying. Any vehicle(s) entered with a different driver for this Event than the previous Event will have their driver-based numbers (fastest lap and finish position) set at 41. Driver metrics are not transferable to another vehicle.

Daytona 500 Qualifying Specific

Thirty-six Charter teams will be assigned a starting position with four Open teams eligible for the remaining positions in the 40-car field. The highest finishing Open team in each Bluegreen Vacation Duel race earns a starting position. The final two starting positions are awarded to Open teams based on Pole Qualifying if not already a top finisher in a Duel race.

Qualifying sets the front row for the Daytona 500 and the starting lineup for the Bluegreen Vacation Duel fields, with the number of Charter team and Open team cars split evenly throughout both races.


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