As the 2012 season winds down, the on-track debut of the new 2013 car at Daytona in February looms large. And to that end, major collaborative efforts between NASCAR and its teams highlighted today’s Goodyear test for the redesigned race car at Phoenix International Raceway.
“You try to be as far ahead of this sport as you can; it’s a constantly evolving target,” said NASCAR Sprint Cup Series points leader Keselowski. “Certainly Goodyear and NASCAR in conjunction with the teams share that goal to do what we can to improve the sport … It’s part of that commitment to evolve the sport as smoothly as possible.
“It’s important to stay in communication with NASCAR and the whole team across the board that works on these things. There are things that we know about the cars that we have access to because we work on them and drive them and do all those things every week that they might not know. And there are some things that they know that we are not going to know with the testing that they do at the tech center and so forth and with the path that they’d like to see the sport go. So, I think we have the ability to both help each other out quite a bit to make the sport better and take advantage of those capabilities.”
Robin Pemberton, NASCAR vice president of competition, echoed Keselowski’s sentiment, saying the information gleaned from drivers has helped hasten the evolution of the 2013 car.
“When you have events that are like this – that are Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday – your relationships are won,” Pemberton said. “Everyone is working on a test plan and everybody basically pulls on the same end of the rope. And so, people have a tendency to drop their guard and talk more openly about the car and the testing and the results of the things that they are testing. We have great relationships with all of our teams and all of our drivers for the most part.”
The next test for Goodyear and the 2013 cars is scheduled for Nov. 6-7 at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
NASCAR has worked closely with the three manufacturers – 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.