Under the new format, 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup champion Brad Keselowski would not have missed last year's Chase playoffs. By virtue of Keselowski's win at Charlotte last year, the champion would have had the chance to defend his title. But, based on last year's points Keselowski had no chance to make it two Sprint Cup titles in a row.
So when the green flag initiates the action in Sunday's 56th annual "Great American Race", drivers like Keselowski will be trying harder than ever to win the race, and also qualify for the 2014 Chase for the Sprint Cup title.
No doubt winning the 2014 Daytona 500 will have more significance to the drivers than ever. Sunday's Daytona 500 may see the hardest racing in recent years at the famous speedway because of the new Chase system, and possibly result in a new era of racing at Daytona. It should be really interesting with all that is now at stake for all the drivers and teams.