Welcome back, race fans. Finally, the new racing season is here.

NASCAR has been hard at work making big changes for this year.

And guess what? I really like the changes and think we're going to see some of the best racing in years.

NASCAR has finally changed the point system so it's now really simple to follow.

There are 43 drivers who qualify for each race. The winner will be awarded 43 points for the win, plus three bonus points.

Second place gets 42, and the points will drop off by one for each position, so the driver who finishes 43rd will get one point. Drivers will earn one bonus point for leading a lap and another bonus point will be given to the driver who leads the most laps. So the winner of the race could earn 48 points. By the way, does the number 48 (Jimmie Johnson's number) bother you?

It does me.

Another big change in NASCAR is how the drivers will qualify. The speeds the drivers set in the final practice session will determine how they qualify.

The slowest cars will time trial first and the driver with fastest practice speed will go out last. If qualifying gets rained out after practice, the field will be set by the drivers' practice speeds.

I really like that idea.

But if qualifying and time trials both get rained out, the drivers will start by points.

In another change, only six guys will go over the wall to pit the car instead of seven because of the new fueling system. As for The Chase, the top ten drivers in points will automatically qualify. The two drivers with the most wins of those in 11th through 20th positions in points will fill the 11th and 12th positions for The Chase.

Another change I really like is drivers will have to decide which one of the top three NASCAR series (Sprint Cup, Nationwide or Camping World Truck series) they want to run in for a championship.

So, tune in Sunday at noon and watch the Daytona 500. I don't think you'll be disappointed.

Brad Paisley will be the pre-race entertainment and a tribute will be made to Dale Earnhardt on the 10th anniversary of his death.