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NASCAR Cup: Next Gen car debut pushed back to 2022

HOMESTEAD, FLORIDA – JANUARY 15: Erik Jones tests the Next Gen car at Homestead-Miami Speedway on January 15, 2020 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)

By AMANDA VINCENT

NASCAR has pushed back the competitive debut of its Next Gen race car for its Cup Series until the 2022 season, the stock-car racing sanctioning body announced Thursday. The newly-designed car originally was scheduled to hit the track in 2021 in the season-opening Daytona 500. The push back is a result of the coronavirus pandemic bringing a halt to testing of the new vehicle.

“Due to challenges related to the coronavirus pandemic, the debut of the Next Gen car will be delayed until 2022,” NASCAR Senior Vice President of Racing Innovation Jeff Probst said. “The decision was made in collaboration with the OEMs and team owners. We will continue to develop the Next Gen car, and a revised testing timeline will be shared when more information is available.”

Versions of the Next Gen car have undergone four single-car tests with four different drivers at four different tracks. The car has been tested at Richmond Raceway, Phoenix Raceway, Homestead-Miami Speedway and Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif., by drivers including Austin Dillon, Joey Logano, Erik Jones and William Byron. The latest version of the car, tested at ACS by Byron in early March, included a sequential gearbox and 18-inch aluminum alloy wheels with a single center lug. NASCAR already has announced the move to the 18-inch, single-lug wheel with the new car.

“I like the car. I think it’s really cool,” Byron’s crew chief Chad Knaus said, as quoted in a NASCAR.com article, after Byron’s test. “It’s definitely taking a step in the right direction in terms of modern motorsports, so I think that’s great. We have a lot to learn as an industry about what this car is capable of. I really want to acknowledge RCR (Richard Childress Racing) and NASCAR; they did a fantastic job in getting this car built to get it out here. I thought it was spectacular.”

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Posted by on April 3, 2020. Filed under Breaking News,Cup Series,Featured,NASCAR. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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