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Finishing last in a NASCAR race isnt always as awful as it seems Everyone gets a piece of the action in some way shape or form Points are awarded to every driver who competes in a race The actual winner at the end of the season is not who won the most money but who earned the most points The Winston Cup Series has used several point systems since its start in 1949 NASCAR designed the current system which has been in place since the 1975 season It has built-in incentives that reward teams for leading races and finishing near the front The system also rewards the consistency throughout the season by awarding points to every competitor in each race and awarding the same number of points at each event-whether its 500 miles on a super speedway like Daytona or 400 laps on a short track like Richmond The winner of a NASCAR race receives 175 points From there the points given decline in five-point increments for places two through six Points awarded drop four points per driver for positions seven through 11 and three-point increments separate drivers points for finishers in 12th place or lower Rewarding the top five and top 10 finishers in this manner promotes performance and consistency Given the fierce competition within the NASCAR Winston Cup Series and the number of teams capable of winning on any given weekend a finish in the top five or top 10 is regarded as a highly regarded effort The system is also set up where the driver can receive bonus points The only way a driver can receive bonus points is to lead a race Five points are awarded to any driver who leads at least one lap An additional five points are awarded to the driver who leads the most laps during each race If two or more drivers tie to lead the most amounts of laps each driver receives the additional
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