The Flags of NASCAR

By C Moon,  RaceSpot.com

January 14, 2000 12:00 AM ET 

The Green Flag starts the race.  It is displayed at the beginning of the race and after a Yellow flag and signals the drivers that racing has begun.  

The Yellow Flag signals caution on the track. Accidents, debris or weather can cause a yellow flag.   Drivers cannot pass once the yellow is displayed. (Current rules allow Cup drivers to race back to the start/ finish line and pass cars they are near when the yellow is displayed).  The cars form a single line behind the pace car.  The yellow flag presents an opportunity for teams to make pit stops while the field is moving slowly around the track.  When exiting the pits, the cars must fall to the end of the line.  Before restarting, the cars on the lead lap are placed in one line to the outside of the track while all lapped cars form another line on the inside of the track.  When the Green Flag is displayed, itís off to the races again.  

The Black Flag is displayed at a single car and driver.  Either a rules violation or safety concerns cause a driver to be Black Flagged.  The car must go immediately to the pits.  NASCAR does not give a driver any a few laps to report to the pits.  Once the black flag is displayed, scoring can stop counting laps completed by the car.  Some of the frequent rules violations include excessive pit speed, running over air hoses in the pits, driving infractions and unsafe vehicles.  

The Red Flag indicates the drivers must stop racing.  The cars are usually stopped on the track in a safe area and engines are turned off.  No work on any car is permitted during a Red Flag.  The Yellow Flag is displayed before racing starts again.  

A Blue Flag with a Yellow diagonal stripe is used to signal drivers to move over for faster cars.  It is used to allow cars to lap slower cars.  

The White Flag indicates ONE LAP TO GO.  

The Black and White Checkered Flag is displayed to the leader of the race indicating the race is over, go to the winners circle.  It is also displayed to every car on the track indicating the race is over.          


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