NASCAR will introduce a different rules package for 11 tracks this season in hopes of a better racing product at short tracks and road courses.
The changes will be in effect for all six Cup Series road course races and the majority of tracks 1.058 miles or less. Included is Phoenix Raceway, the site of the championship finale.
The changes to Next Gen are:
- 2-inch spoiler (from 4 inches)
- The removal of 3 diffuser strakes and engine panel strakes
NASCAR Cup Series teams will receive the rules bulletin Wednesday outlining the changes. Officials said the changes will lead to a 30% reduction in downforce.
The road course races are the Charlotte Roval, Chicago, Circuit of the Americas, Indianapolis, Sonoma, and Watkins Glen. Of the five other races, four are points-paying races: Martinsville Speedway, New Hampshire, Phoenix Raceway, Richmond Raceway. The outlier is North Wilkesboro, which will host the All-Star Race.
“We saw incredible racing throughout the 2022 season, especially at the intermediate tracks,” said NASCAR senior vice president and chief racing development officer John Probst. “Our goal is to have the best racing possible everywhere we race, so during the offseason, we went to work on adjustments to strengthen the racing on short tracks and road courses.
“Adjustments will be made to the car that will create a significant reduction in downforce, and based on driver feedback, and what we saw from the January test in Phoenix, we’re excited to see the results of these efforts.”
The March 12 race at Phoenix will be the first with the new rule changes. As a result, NASCAR will give teams an extended 50-minute practice session.