Should Maximum Driver Starts Be 7 or 9?

In addition to Should Your Fantasy NASCAR Team Entry Carry Over Each Week?, the second most questioned tweak to the rules that Yahoo! Fantasy Auto Racing had in their game is our suggested reduction of driver starts from 9 to 7.

You can see in our rules for the Driver Group Game it says this regarding maximum starts.

Maximum Starts

Each driver in the Driver Group Game can be in the ‘Starter’ position of your team in no more than seven races. For the purposes of this game, a driver must be in the ‘Starter’ position for a race (not during qualifying) in order to be charged with a race start. Likewise, a driver who is on your team but stays in the ‘Bench’ position during the race does not get charged for a race start.

Once a driver has reached the seven-race limit, he will no longer accumulate any fantasy points for your team even if he occupies a ‘Starter’ roster spot. This limit does not change no matter when you join the game.

Your driver’s start totals will not reset at the segment divisions of the season. If you start your driver seven times during the first segment of the season, he will not be eligible to earn ANY fantasy points (qualifying, finish or lap points) for the remainder of the season.
If a driver is on your roster in a ‘Starter’ position for a given race but does not drive in that real-life event, he will not be charged with a race start. But, you will also not earn any points from him. The number of races each driver has started for you will be listed along with all of his other stats.

Does It Make It More Competitive?

The underlying reason our group suggested to reduce it to 7 starts is to make the game a little more competitive. Historically, in the Yahoo! game there were drivers in the A and B groups that got very little use if some drivers were dominating. At 9 starts per driver you could essentially use just 4 drivers from each group for the entire season (9 starts x 4 drivers = 36 races).

Reducing it to 7 starts seems a minor tweak, but it does force you to use at least 6 of the 8 drivers in each group. (7 starts x 5 drivers = 35 races. Plus, 1 more driver used 1 time to equal 36 races.)

We Want Your Vote And Feedback!

When I sent the first ‘update’ email to those that signed up I got plenty of replies regarding this. Rather then surmise what I think the majority of fantasy NASCAR players want in this new game strictly from those emails, let’s open it for discussion here.

Please converse in the comments below this post the pros and cons. Also, vote 9 or 7 in the poll included here.

Maximum Starts For Each Driver


more info here

45 thoughts on “Should Maximum Driver Starts Be 7 or 9?

  1. I actually really like your reasoning on why it should be 7 instead of 9. I am completely open to this change and you’re right, at the end of the season there were several drivers in A that I didn’t touch or barely touched that no doubt could have scored me decent points.
    I’m all in for 7 starts!

  2. I like the 9 max start rule. The way the drivers shift around in the different groups you always end up with 3 or 4 you can’t use consistently anyway which makes the premium drivers 9 starts even more important. The competitiveness is already built into the 9 max starts.

  3. I voted for 7, but I am okay with 9, too.
    I am glad that you are picking up the slack where Yahoo left off, and while I understand that it’s human nature to resist change in something that we like, we also need to consider the source of our original “default setting” – Yahoo. I think that I probably speak for a lot of people when I say that I’ve never been impressed by the decision-making of those clowns. To assume that their settings are optional just because they’re the most familiar to us is a pretty silly way of looking at things, and I feel like it’s worth a shot to mix things up a little bit.

    I agree that it would make things more competitive, more involved, and it would raise the stakes significantly for when slackers forget to switch out their lineups (assuming that that bill passes, of course). Finally, at the risk of stating the obvious, every player would be bound to the limit of 7, so we’re all going to be in the same boat.

    And if we try 7 this year and we don’t like it as a group, I have to think that the good people at FRCS would be happy to switch back to 9 next season. After all, if Brian France can change the rules every week, FRCS can change them yearly…

    1. The above should read:

      To assume that their settings are *optimal* just because they’re the most familiar to us is a pretty silly way of looking at things.

      Stupid autocorrect/fat thumbs…

      1. I like 7 starts because it adds another challenge to one of the best games in fantasy period.
        It also takes away the ablility for a person to use a hot driver like the 78, 24 or 4 during a long stretch of time.

  4. B & C tiers are usually very low in talent. Having 9 starts at least gives the player the ability to ride a jot hand a little longer.

    1. The Yahoo game was great as it was with 9 starts, so why change something when it isn’t broken. As far as lineup carryover, leave it as it is, again if it isn’t broken don’t try to change it.
      Now I think adding stage points if possible would be a good thing and I do like awarding the winner of a race 100 points. Leading a lap should only be 5 points and the one leading the most laps 10 points.
      Small things like this is good, but limiting starts to 7 and worrying about a lineup carryover doesn’t need to be done in my opinion.

  5. I’m okay with either, but I voted for 7 because we’d all be in the same boat and have the same challenges. Last year in Yahoo, I ended the season only using Truex and Harvick 7 times. I believe overall the weekly scores will be lower, but will be very challenging and force me to strategically pick a driver with less than stellar numbers. However, the sting of picking a “popular” driver and them wrecking early in the race will smart a lot more.

    1. Plus your doing all the work to create this so I believe you should do it the way you want. Without you we would have nothing compared to yahoo so those complaining should be thankful.

  6. BIG THANKS for picking up Yahoo’s dropped ball. I am encouraged that this game will be run by folks who understand NASCAR and are asking for input from players.

    I’m good with either 9 or 7. I do think 9 allows for those “what the hell” starts when your pick is obviously among the top 5 and then blows an engine or gets mixed up in somebody else’s mistake. It hurts to use up one of those top picks for a 40th place finish! Nine starts would require using half (4 in A and C, and 8 in B) if you used them for all nine starts. While it makes a good mathematical argument for 7, in reality that’s not the way it will play out. Last year both group B and C were tough and we were forced to use drivers that were not competitive compared to the top of the group. Had we been limited to 7 starts it would have been very frustrating.

    I’m good either way, and appreciate the previous poster noting that if it doesn’t work, the rules can be changed.

    As far as the carry over from one week to the next IMO it doesn’t make any difference. If a player isn’t staying on top of their picks every week they won’t be competitive by the end of week 8 or 10.

    Thanks again for DGG and allowing the players a chance to provide input. TWO THUMBS UP!

  7. I agree that it is going to be more challenging because we will have to use each driver for a higher percentage of their driving opportunities. If there were 8 “A” drivers last year, we had 72 (8 x 9) opportunities for 36 starts whereas this year we will have to pick 36 starters from 56 opportunities.

    According to the rules we must start 2 “B” drivers each week. Compared to the “A” group, being able to start each “B” driver only seven times will be even tougher in my opinion in that we will have 112 opportunities to fill 72 starters vs having 144 opportunities last year.

    Could we compromise with 8 starts? Finally, I agree with the comment above and truly appreciate that FRCS is picking up the slack from Yahoo. I have no doubt that the folks at FRCS will do a better job.

  8. Nine starts with carryover, please. That way my brother-in-law will at least have a chance when he forgets to set his lineup for multiple weeks in a row.

  9. The problem with 7 versus 9 is not with the A or B Groups, but with the C Group. In the C group we have a few new prospects, a few old duds, and all with bad cars. Also a few i the B group are really C drivers, and perhaps could be moved to the C group. 9 has worked well in the past and the A group is reduced to 8 drivers versus 9.

    Anyway, no driver stays hot all year, so if someone only wants to use a few drivers the better players will dominate!

  10. The C group needs help, what about placing Ty Dillon and Trevor Bayne back in the C group,
    this is where they honestly belong

  11. Having 7 starts sounds a great challenge. I love the idea. The only thing I have a problem with is C drivers. I can only see 21 automatic starts. Finding 15 more will be very difficult. My suggestion would be to drop Ty Dillion back down to C. That’ll give us 28 starts and we can find the other 8 with restrictor plate and road coarses. Thank you guys so much for bringing the Yahoo model to your site! Going to be an awesome year!!!

  12. Hello and thanks for picking up where Yahoo left off. I run Ducky’s Car Wash league which has been open in Yahoo for 17 years and I really want to keep it going. You beat out a dozen other places and will be home to Ducky’s this year (and hopefully many years to come). So thanks again.

    As for the poll, my league has become very competitive in the last few years. Maybe changing it to 7 instead of 9 will give some new players a chance against the returning players. I usually have about 30 returning and 20 new. And I haven’t won Ducky’s in years… maybe some changes will give me an edge. By the way, how many teams will be allowed in each league? Yahoo’s max was 50. That is a good number. Let us know if you game will be 50 as well.

  13. I have a question I’m new here why can’t i make a team,join a league or make a private league yet are we waiting for feb.1st ???

    I’m kinda waiting to invite yahoo people over here.. it would be an easy sale that’s for sure!

    thanks for your time.. ur bud T-Bone

  14. Brilliant idea to limit the starts to seven!!! Nine starts were too much for any one driver over the course of a 36 race season. This is a game of strategy. Limiting the number to seven starts makes fantasy players use more strategy to find a way to win.

    If there is a concern about the number of C drivers, then take two or three out of the B category and put them in the C Group. Ty Dillon, A.J. Allmendinger, and Trevor Bayne could be candidates for potential moves.

    I like the 7 starts rule!!!

  15. I’d say 9 starts! As said before by someone else, yahoo had a good model. Mirror it as much as possible. The more starts with the C Class the better.

  16. I’d say 9 starts, Yahoos model has worked well in the past, and let the teams carryover if they don’t change their drivers in time. Sometimes life gets in the way of fantasy racing. Modesto Motorsports

  17. Y’all are fortunate. I only get 4 starts per driver in my league. Groups are arranged so we have 9 drivers minimum in each Group but, I not proposing that here. Just sayin’ …..

    I’ve read some good arguments here, for and against 7 or 9 starts. I have to agree with those who say that 7 is more competitive. Isn’t that the whole point of competition and fantasy racing? With 7 starts you can theoretically run the same 6 drivers in each group all season long. With 9 starts you can run the same 4 drivers. Is that as competitive as it can get?

    The more drivers your using the less your leaving on the board unused, which means the more drivers your doing your homework on and paying attention to. Besides, there’s plenty of stats and tables on FRCS to help in that effort, particularly if your a subscriber. May as well put all the tools to good use.

  18. Voted for 9 only because Group C is always the “make or break group”. Player picks the correct mutt for the week, then wins. Seems a consistant scenario for all but one of my fantasy games I play. If not for the 3 new Hendrik drivers in Group C, a guy could just throw darts at the group? Probably the best way too pick a Group C driver.

  19. Seven starts would be more challenging, B and C drivers would have to be used more sparingly. It would increase the challenge, and be more rewarding when you finish at the top. 8 or 9 starts would be fine, also, but no more.

  20. At first I thought 9 starts a driver was perfect now I think 7 times is better you will have to be more careful on maganing your drivers and should make the competition closer.

  21. What was the deciding factor in going to 9? Seemed 7 had stronger support. That does add more strategy into it which the Yahoo game lacks somewhat. But I have noticed that people are not big on strategy and prefer to be able to pick good drivers so probably the right decision for the popularity of the game.

  22. One thing to consider in the future is making the A group smaller with the most elite drivers. For example, you could easily knock Logano and Johnson down to B.

    Bowman and Byron project as B drivers so they could be added to the B group as well and Kahne, Dillon, Bayne and Menard knocked down to C.

    I think people generally hate the C group and making the lower part of B into C drivers would be a good move.

    That is one thing I don’t think Yahoo did very well and people generally hate the C group.

  23. I see no need to change the game from 9 to 7 starts. While it make it sound more strategic/interesting the C list is already diluted enough and doesn’t need that kind of strain put on it late in the season. The 9 start game is what we have all come to know and love, why change a good thing? I would be less likely to carry on under a 7 start format vs a 9 start format. Better yet, how about allowing league commissioners to decide the fate of their individual leagues with 7,8 or 9 starts? This is just my 2 cents and I played in multiple Yahoo NASCAR leagues since 2002.

  24. Up until I found out about the Driver Group Game I was considering to start a game with family and friends and my lineups would have been even tighter. I was going to have only six A drivers and twelve B drivers, with everyone else being C drivers; and any one driver was only going to be played a maximum of seven times. We’ve been playing Yahoo fantasy racing from the time it started, and we were so disappointed when the news came that it had ended. Thanks for the good work, we will play regardless of any decisions that are made.

  25. I would like to see it stay at 9 if those are the only two 8 picks would not be bad. The only problem with 7 for me is there is a pair of brother that I do not use. Not a fan of them and would end up doing terrible ever year if forced to use them. One of them I would not under no reason. I would take a zero every week.

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