NASCAR will use its non-championship Charlotte All-Star race to debut two parts from its planned 2021 Cup Series Gen-7 car.
Current manufacturers Toyota, Chevrolet and Ford have been in discussions with NASCAR to help inform the direction of the new regulations, and the series has consulted manufacturers outside of the series in a bid to attract more car-makers. Road-relevance and controlled costs are two of the targets for the next generation car.
Both potential 2021-spec parts being debuted at the May 18 All-Star race are related to the aerodynamics of the car.
The first technical change is single-piece carbonfibre splitter/pan that should offer improvements in ride-height sensitivity for the drivers and deliver more consistent performance in traffic.
A new radiator duct is the second part, which exits through the hood, as opposed to the current design which exits into the engine compartment. This feature should improve aerodynamic parity and, at the same time, reduce engine temperatures.
“Throughout its history, the NASCAR All-Star Race has provided a platform to try new and innovative ideas, some of which we have incorporated on a full-time basis,” said Steve O’Donnell, NASCAR executive vice president and chief racing development officer.
“Last year’s All-Star rules package resulted in one of the most exciting all-star races in history.
“With a similar package and the added elements that we could see in the next generation race car, we expect another must-watch event.”
NASCAR and Charlotte announced on Wednesday the format of this year’s event, which offers $1,000,000 to the winner.
The race format is similar to 2018, with four stages of 30, 20, 20 and 15 laps each. The final segment is increased from a 10-lap shootout to a 15 lap stint.
Both green flag and yellow flag laps will count in stages one-three; with only green flag laps counting in the final stage.
NASCAR overtime rules will be in effect for stages one-three.
In the final stage, if the race is restarted with two or fewer laps remaining, there will be unlimited attempts at a green-white-checkered finish under green flag conditions.