NASCAR to ease testing ban next week

Image by Levitt/Motorsport Images

NASCAR to ease testing ban next week


NASCAR to ease testing ban next week


NASCAR says it will lift its ban on “most testing” from May 4.

The series announced back on March 17 that it was banning all testing until further notice due to COVID-19. With the sport ready to return to action later this month, NASCAR issued a bulletin on Friday to update teams on areas that address competition, including testing and changes made to the cars for superspeedway races.

The temporary ban on most testing will be lifted on May 4. However, on-track testing will not be allowed in the Cup Series, Xfinity Series, or Gander Truck Series for the remainder of the 2020 season.

Organizations will be allocated 150 hours in the wind tunnel through December 31, 2021, with maximum usage of 70 hours in 2020 and 90 hours in 2021. Wind tunnel testing of Next Gen vehicles by individual organizations is not permitted.

Elsewhere, all remaining parts submission meetings for 2020 have been canceled, and the minimum number of short block sealed engines has changed from 13 to eight.

Other changes come after Ryan Newman’s last-lap accident in the Daytona 500. NASCAR has made changes to the car that will be mandatory on superspeedways (Daytona and Talladega), but optional elsewhere.

Newman missed three races after being hospitalized for a head injury. He has recently been cleared to return to competition and will rejoin the NASCAR Cup Series when racing resumes in Darlington.

Those changes:

  • Addition of a lower main roll bar support bar #20 / intrusion plate and upper main roll bar support bar #21.
  • Elimination of aero ducts at superspeedway tracks.
  • Reduction in size of throttle body from 59/64” to 57/64” (superspeedways only).
  • Updated roll bar padding specifications (mandatory at all tracks beginning June 1).
  • Oil reservoir tank or overflow expansion tank must contain a check valve (mandatory at all tracks beginning with Talladega).
  • Slip tape must be applied along the entire length of the lower rearward facing surfaces of the rear bumper cover and extension (superspeedways only).

“As teams prepare for the return to racing, we want to provide as much advance notice as possible for upcoming technical changes,” said John Probst, NASCAR senior vice president of racing development. “Some of these updates stem from the investigation into (Newman’s) incident at Daytona, and all are intended to produce a safe and competitive race at all venues. We look forward to providing more details in the near future.”

Click here to see diagrams of the changes to the roll cage structure and roll bar support bars.


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