France cites popularity of Chase among fans in not tweaking championship format this season

NASCAR won't change its new championship format, which chairman Brian France says is "overwhelmingly popular" with fans.

The Chase was revamped last year into an elimination-style system that created a winner-take-all final race among four drivers. Kevin Harvick won the season finale at Homestead in November to claim his first Sprint Cup title.

France on Monday called it "perhaps the best Chase ever" and the excitement created will carry into this season.

One change coming into 2015 will be that NASCAR will no longer permit teams to alter their car's side skirts during a race. The practice was widespread last season, but NASCAR took no action against teams.