Monday, July 30, 2012

Michigan tire test gets good reviews

   Twenty-eight NASCAR Sprint Cup Series teams and two NASCAR Camping World Truck Series teams participated in a day-long tire confirmation at Michigan International Speedway on Monday.

   Michigan International Speedway became NASCAR’s fastest race track in June. Marcos Ambrose's speed of 203.241 mph for the Quicken Loans 400 was the 11th-fastest pole-winning speed in Cup series history and the first time the pole winning speed was faster than 200 mph at a track other than Talladega Superspeedway and Daytona International Speedway.

   But NASCAR driver Greg Biffle thought the speeds, though slower, would lend themselves to exciting racing at NASCAR’s fastest racetrack.

“Since the speed is down just a tiny bit I think you will see that groove continue to widen out. I have even floored it down lower on the race track and the car has some turn in it down there. I think we are going to see some good racing,” Biffle said. “We were all fearful that this tire would be really low on grip and the car would be hard to drive and it would chatter out from under us. That is certainly not the case.”

   Michigan son Brad Keselowski agreed.

   “Michigan is a lot different track with the repave, and we saw that here with the spring race. So we’re all still just trying to get a grip on that, literally, and trying to figure it out,” he said. “So Goodyear has us here to kind of reconfirm some things that we saw and hopefully improve the racing another notch here at Michigan International Speedway. So we’re just trying to help out here as we can and also make our cars better at the same time. So it’s a good process for all.”

NASCAR issues final approval for 2013 Cup cars

   NASCAR has issued final approval all four manufacturer's 2013 entries in the Sprint Cup Series - the Chevrolet SS, Dodge Charger, Ford Fusion and Toyota Camry. Manufacturers can begin making parts and pieces for the new models.

   The 2013 Cup car is the result of more than two years of collaborative efforts between the manufacturers and NASCAR. The cars more closely resemble their respective manufacturer models on the showroom floor.

   “We commend the manufacturers and our team at the R&D center on all the hard work they’ve put into this new car,” said Robin Pemberton, NASCAR's vice president of competition. “With all the designs and surface areas of the car now approved, manufacturers can now move forward with building the components needed to outfit their cars.

   "The wind tunnel testing we’ve had with the manufacturers over the past several months has given us the timely and necessary data we needed to come to this confirmation. We believe the new car is going to be a milestone opportunity for our sport, one that our fans will embrace."