Next year’s redesigned race cars are on the fast track, literally.
Last week, the 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series car tested the high banks of the series’ largest track – Talladega Superspeedway. On Tuesday, the next step was taken in the 2013 car rollout during the first of a two-day Goodyear tire test at 1.5-mile Texas Motor Speedway.
Today at Texas, Greg Biffle, Kyle Busch, Paul Menard and Juan Pablo Montoya tested Goodyear Eagle's on the next generation cars that debut next season.
"Moving into 2013 we’ve worked hand in hand with Goodyear and their engineers to get a plan together to build tires specifically for this new race car and optimize the grip,” said Robin Pemberton, NASCAR vice president of competition. “We have built this car with the mindset that we are going after more of a mechanical grip and reduce some of the aero dependencies of the car for 2013. … This test at Texas is actually our very first test with multiple cars with the new aero package."
Tuesday's test session is part of a rigorous testing schedule for NASCAR and Goodyear heading into the highly-anticipated 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season. Biffle, Busch, Menard and Montoya will test the new models again Wednesday at Texas, with future tests at Phoenix International Raceway and Charlotte Motor Speedway on Oct. 23-24 and Nov. 6-7, respectively.
The 1.5-mile track at Texas provided a perfect proving ground for the new Chevrolet SS, Ford Fusion and Toyota Camry models.
"I think it’s definitely headed in the right direction, 100%” Biffle said. “They’ve taken weight out of the car, which I think was definitely the right move. Basically what we’re working on is getting more mechanical grip and having the car not be so aero dependent."
NASCAR has worked with Chevrolet, Ford and Toyota to develop the next generation of race cars that will make their debut during Speedweeks 2013 at Daytona International Speedway. The new race cars are designed to mirror their production counterparts in appearance.
“It’s going to look really, really cool,” Montoya said. “I’m excited. If you’re a fan and you like a certain car, you’re really going to fall in love with it watching a race. And you can really relate to it more than before.”