NASCAR Next Gen car got input from three drivers with a lot of experience in the NASCAR industry in their latest test.
The three drivers to have recently tested the car that is set to debut in the 2022 season were Tony Stewart, Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Clint Bowyer. All the drivers were pleased with the experience they had with the car in the test at Bowman-Gray Stadium in Winston-Salem, N.C. This place used to host Cup Series races from 1958 to 1971.
Stewart, who was the primary driver for a Goodyear tire test, said:
“It was fun today to get a chance to come up here, to be invited by NASCAR to come up and do the tire test for the Coliseum race. This is a track I’ve only been to one time and got to watch the races,” Stewart said. “So, it was pretty cool to be on track here. It was fun and to get a chance to drive the Next Gen car was cool, too.
“Goodyear had a good plan coming into today, and I think they’re pretty happy with the results that they got. I think what they brought with the control set is probably a little harder than what they need. They brought a softer tire and they were pretty happy with it and I think that’s probably a combination of what they’ll bring out West.”
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As a TV analyst, Earnhardt Jr too took laps in the car and Bowyer as well, so that they would use the first-hand experience in the car for their future analysis. Earnhardt was especially pleased with the braking performance of the car and even said that it is better than the stock car.
“It’s different than anything I’ve ever drove in NASCAR. The braking ability and the braking performance of the car is probably the one thing that stood out to me the most. That was the one thing that took the most to get used to,” Earnhardt said.
“I’m using the brake pedals the same way I’ve used the brake pedals all my life but this car stops so much better. I’m over-slowing the car way too much. It has a bigger tire on it, more grip. It has better drive off the corner with that tire.
“It just does everything better. It doesn’t feel too unfamiliar. It doesn’t feel too strange. It does everything like a stock car, just better.”
While Earnhardt’s turn to test the car is probably over, he didn’t had enough of the Next Gen car on Tuesday and would love to get back to it’s seat again.
“I begged them to get me at some more tests. Martinsville, Daytona, Charlotte – I would love to get behind the wheel one of these cars and get some more seat time in the car to understand them better,” he said.
“I still had a long way to go, personally, until I could get to a point where I could maximize my lap times. I think I would need another day running 8 (a.m.) to 5 (p.m.) before I think I would get where I need to be personally.”