CART released its chassis regulations for 1996, a package designed to slow the cars down aerodynamically, and increase driver safety.

There will be a 43 percent increase in chassis penetration resistance. Aerodynamic rule revisions will decrease the tunnel exit area to 35 inches by six inches. The current dimensions are 43 inches by six inches.

The minimum clearance of bodywork around the rear tires will be increased from the current 1.25-inches to four inches. There will also be restrictions on the placement of rear brake scoops, front wings and side pod aerodynamic devices for the short ovals and road courses and rear wing angles for the Superspeedways.

The thickness of the outer skin of the chassis around the driver's torso will increase to .100 inches from the current .070 inches. The side pods will be strengthened through the use of aluminum or nomex honeycomb, and they must be at least 14 inches tall at the leading edge. Current rules call for a 12 inch side pod heighth.

Roll bar and cockpit padding will be increased and there will, for the first time, be cockpit side panels to reduce head and neck trauma in cases of high-impact incidents. The panels must extend to a height not less than the mid-point of the driver's helmet.

Hmmm.....other than the engine formula, these new rules are getting damn close to the IRL rules!

*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-* * Jim DeFord * * jdeford@pacifier.com * *-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-* * Rootin' For Pruett in '95 * *-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*