The ‘choose rule’ was implemented by NASCAR prior to the August 8, 2020 race weekend at Michigan Speedway. The rule is in effect for all three national series for all races except road courses and superspeedways.
It is not used at road courses because teams don’t typically get the “one lap to go” until the have already passed the start-finish line. It is not used at superspeedways to prevent teammates and manufacturers to work more closely together than they normally would.
Rule book wording on the ‘choose rule’:
10.5.9.4 Choose Restart Positions
.a Choose restart positions will be in effect at all Events except Superspeedway and Road Course Events.
.b Prior to restarts, when the single file restart order is confirmed and when instructed by race control, drivers must choose the inside or outside lane before the designated “V”-shaped painted mark on the racing surface. Once the single file order is established, drivers must not change position until after they have chosen a lane for the restart.
.c If, in NASCAR’s judgement, a driver changes position prior to choosing a lane, touches the painted box within the “V” with his/her tires, changes lanes after choosing, or impedes the Choose process, it will result in a penalty.
.d The Race leader is the control vehicle for each restart.
.e As determined by race control, the single file line up order is:
- Lead lap vehicles that did not enter pit road
- Lead lap vehicles that entered pit road once as they return to the race track
- Lap down vehicles that did not enter pit road
- Lap down vehicles that entered pit road and vehicles that entered pit road multiple times, as they return to the race track
- Free Pass vehicle
- Wave Around vehicles
- Penalty vehicles
- Lay over vehicles.
.f Pit road will close at the command of race control after all vehicles have had the opportunity to pit.
.g The following vehicles are not eligible to Choose:
- Lay over vehicles
- Vehicles on pit road when the Choose process begins
- Penalty vehicles.
These vehicles will line up tail end of the longest line in the following order:
- Vehicles on pit road when the Choose process began
- Penalty vehicles
- Vehicles laying over.
.h After the Choose process begins, if the restart is waived off or the Race is declared official (e.g. rain, lightning, unable to resume green flag racing at the Stage end, etc.), then the subsequent line up or Race finish will:
- Revert to the order of the vehicles prior to the Choose process, including Freeze the Field order, use of the pit out camera, penalty vehicles, and vehicles ability to maintain reasonable speed, as determined by NASCAR.
- At the Series Managing Director’s discretion, if the Race is delayed for an extended period, NASCAR may require another Choose prior to the restart.