New NASCAR Rules Work in Progress
By: Pete Pistone - @PPistone on December 17, 2013 | 1:37 P.M. EST
After holding a test at Charlotte Motor Speedway this off-season, NASCAR finally landed on a rules package for next year that the sanctioning body hopes will make for even better racing than seen in 2013. (Photo: Jeff Wackerlin)
After holding a test at Charlotte Motor Speedway this off-season, NASCAR finally landed on a rules package for next year that the sanctioning body hopes will make for even better racing than seen in 2013.
Specifically upgrading the intermediate track product was the goal during the tests and a number of things were tried before NASCAR created next year’s rules.
Confronting the tricky prospect of aerodynamics and adjusting down force has proven to be a challenge and this latest swing at the 2014 rules package was no different.
"It proved out in the test, but adding down force made it more difficult to catch the guy in front of you because it disturbs more air," said Roush Fenway Racing driver Greg Biffle.
"A great analogy is a boat. The bigger the boat, the bigger the wake. You take a little raft with a 10-horsepower outboard (motor), he doesn’t make a big wake. You take a 70-foot (boat), it makes a huge wake. The bigger the wake, the harder it is for the guy behind to maintain even though that guy has more down force. He doesn’t have the air to make the down force work."
One thing NASCAR did not implement in the new rule was taking away speed or horsepower in an effort to upgrade passing or side by side racing. Biffle wasn’t a fan of that thought process anyway.
"I like to go fast," he said. "I like to have a lot of horsepower. I like to have to slow up for the corners. I've always been a proponent of more power, less down force, softer tires. In my view of what is better racing, I’m a traditionalist. I like the fastest car to win the race.
"If a guy has a bad pit stop, speeds on pit road or makes a mistake and you still have the fastest car, I like that guy to have the ability to get all the way to the front, pass everybody in front of him and go win the race. That’s what racing is all about.
"If it so happens to be a guy that sits on the pole, has the best pit stops, best strategy and leads every lap, I’m OK with that, too, because he deserved to win."