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NASCAR focuses on potential aero changes in Charlotte test

Oct 14, 2013, 10:00 PM EDT

Denny Hamlin AP

With an eye toward improving the racing on their intermediate tracks, NASCAR ran through a series of aerodynamic changes during a test session today at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Six teams took part in the session, which was delayed by rain and continued past sundown.

Drivers included Penske Racing’s Brad Keselowski, Wood Brothers Racing’s Trevor Bayne, Richard Childress Racing’s Jeff Burton, Joe Gibbs Racing’s Denny Hamlin, Earnhardt Ganassi Racing’s Jamie McMurray and Michael Waltrip Racing tester Brett Moffitt, who filled in for MWR regular Brian Vickers after the latter’s announcement of him sitting out the rest of the year due to the discovery of a blood clot in his right leg.

“Our objective is to shake down some potential changes for the 2014 season,” NASCAR vice president of innovation and racing development Gene Stefanyshyn said in a statement from the sanctioning body. “We will be doing this on an ongoing basis, with an eye to continue to improve our product on the track. It is really an exercise in continuous improvement.

Three different aero configurations were run during the session. Reid Spencer of the NASCAR Wire Service reports that the list of variables tested included changes to the front splitter, rear spoiler, back bumper and ride height, as well as the addition of a wicker bill across the roof of the cars.

Echoing Stefanyshyn’s thoughts on “continuous improvement,” NASCAR vice president of competition Robin Pemberton indicated that the Charlotte test was focused on raising the competition aspect following the teams’ transition phase over to the new Generation 6 cars this year.

“As everyone knows, we did an unbelievable amount of miles last year testing many different configurations,” Pemberton said. “Our goal was to hand the car off to the teams better than the one that they ended the 2012 season with. We feel like we achieved that goal; we feel like the cars performed well, the drivers like the way the car drives.

“From that standpoint, it was a successful year…We will always continue to evaluate our competition and this is one of those programs that’s coming together.”

  1. 40fan - Oct 15, 2013 at 2:31 AM

    It nice to see Nascar trying to make the racing even better than it already is, but there is people that will still complain that they’re not doing enough. Nascar is damned if they do and damn if they don’t.

    • rprperry1 - Oct 21, 2013 at 5:31 AM

      NASCAR is cutting there own throats ! Spectator count is way down and they have only themselves to blame. A lot of drivers don’t like the new cars, but yet again NASCAR won’t listen they only want to hear themselves talk. but if the drivers say any thing negative about the cars or tires they get fined. NASCAR is kidding themselves if they think other wise, Cookie cutter cars is not going to get the stands filled. I have watched stock car racing sense the 60’s and have seen a lot of good changes come along, safety the biggest improvement to date and now the cars are back to resembling the cars we buy at the dealer ship. but they have a long way to go to get me back into the stands or even to get me to sit down and watch a full race on tv.

  2. wallio - Oct 15, 2013 at 8:33 AM

    A wicker bill? I tought the manufacturers said no to that so the cars look more stock? Or was that a one year only thing? I hope they don’t mess up the cars too much, they look damn good.

  3. pitpenguinsrulez - Oct 15, 2013 at 10:55 AM

    A wicker bill? If I am correct aren’t those what were on the cars from 2000-2002 during the Restrictor Plate races?

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