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This Week Begins the Real Test for NASCAR’s Gen-6 Car

By admin | February 28, 2013

By Richard Allen

 Now that the Daytona 500 is over, the real test for NASCAR newest car is set to begin. This season marks the first use of the latest version of racer employed by the sanctioning body. The so called Gen-6, for sixth generation car, now has one race under its imaginary belt, but the Daytona International Speedway is not the track that was supposed to see the greatest improvement from the new ride.

While the car still uses the same skeleton as its predecessor, the Car of Tomorrow, it has a new body design which allows for brand identity. The Gen-6 also has decreased right side and overall weight in comparison to the CoT. It is hoped that the varying aerodynamics among the manufacturers along with the reduced weight will allow cars to run side by side and pass more than has been the case in recent years on the majority of tracks used by NASCAR.

The Sprint Cup schedule calls for races to be held on the one-mile Phoenix International Speedway, the 1.5 mile Las Vegas Motor Speedway, the half-mile Bristol Motor Speedway and the two-mile Auto Club Speedway over the next four weeks.

It’s those type of tracks, not the restrictor plate speedways like Daytona, where the Gen-6 must provide the greatest improvement in the competition. The fifth generation car proved to be so aerodynamically sensitive that drivers were often unable to pass due to “losing the nose” of their car when they got too close to the vehicle in front of them. As a result, races on the non-plate tracks, particularly the 1.5 - 2 mile ‘cookie cutters’, often ran much like high speed parades with little passing or close quarter racing.

Will the Gen-6 provide the right combination to end the parades? Or, with no passing taking place, will track position at the front of the parade remain so critical that races will continue to be won based on fuel mileage and/or the fastest pit stops?

One race or a series of four races will not provide enough information to fully answer those questions. But make no mistake, the real test for this car will begin this weekend in Phoenix. Hopefully, there will at least be hope for better competition based on what we see this week and over the next four weeks.

Topics: Articles |

5 Responses to “This Week Begins the Real Test for NASCAR’s Gen-6 Car”

  1. Sue Rarick Says:
    February 28th, 2013 at 4:48 pm

    If it’s back to fuel mileage races Nascar might as well pull down the lid on the coffin.

    On the plus side at least Brian won’t have to wake up early and be forced to go watch part of a race.

  2. mike williams Says:
    February 28th, 2013 at 9:17 pm

    Lid on the coffin? Might be a little extreme i think

  3. Russ Says:
    March 1st, 2013 at 7:50 am

    If as we have been told all the manufacturers had to have the same aero numbers it bodes no good.

    That means that the teams with the most engineers and money to spend working in the “grey areas” will have a significant advantage.

    So any guesses what that means?

  4. Robert Says:
    March 1st, 2013 at 9:54 am

    For some real racing, how about we completely change things?! Get rid of most of the rules. Make sure the cars pass all safety requirements. A tire rule of course. Wheelbase the same for all. Then, anything goes! How about a supercharged 6 banger in a 68 chevelle on track with a 85 T-bird and a 77 Monte Carlo with a big block!

  5. ginaV24 Says:
    March 1st, 2013 at 1:37 pm

    It’s still a spec car provided by NASCAR for the most part, just with a new body on top. If all cars are equal and run the same speed, then it’s all about track position, which has been the bane of exciting racing for too many years now.

    Sue, I agree with you, NASCAR is on life support. Honestly, NASCAR has a limited time to convince the fans who are still watching (I consider Daytona an anomaly for ratings) that the Gen6 car is going to actually provide interesting racing. No, I don’t expect every lap to be edge of my seat exciting, but I do expect to see some passing that doesn’t take place on pit road or have them count the lead changes associated with green flag stops. Please, NASCAR really thinks we are that stupid when they post their stats?

    It would be a lot more fun if NASCAR did it the way Robert said!

    Oh and if someone would please muzzle DW so that Mike Joy could call the race on Fox, that might help as well. I will say that Fox has some advantages as far as getting viewers simply because for those of us on the east coast, the weather is still wintry and by the time the race in Phoenix actually starts, it will have started to get dark.

    However, assuming that Raceview is actually functional this week, I will get most of my information from my computer using that application and twitter, along with the radio feed, than I actually expect to hear from the TV broadcast.