What’s that mean for the future of the sport? Nate Ryan, writing for USA Today, examines the issue:

In the release announcing what potentially could trigger a paradigm shift in the NASCAR business model, a form of “collaborative” appears four times.

It’s a rather overt attempt to defuse the perception that “contentious” would be a better way to describe the formation of the Race Team Alliance, the federation of nine Sprint Cup teams announced Monday that represents 25 cars and every significant star driver in stock-car racing.

Ostensibly, the formation of what could be construed as a de-facto owners union was framed by chairman Rob Kauffman as a “business alliance.” Kauffman, the co-owner of Michael Waltrip Racing, said RTA’s primary goal was as a cost-cutting vehicle by creating economies of scale that would save teams money through deals on hotel rooms, air travel and crew members’ insurance.

But the ramifications could be far larger for NASCAR, which has been insulated from the market forces that have affected other sports with unionized players and franchised team owners.

You can read the rest of Ryan’s analysis here.