NASCAR’s 2013 car: Work continues to find right aero balance, enhance passing

The 2013 season is four months away and teams are awaiting the final aerodynamic rules for the new Sprint Cup cars.
There is a good reason for that: NASCAR is searching for an aerodynamic package that will work.
NASCAR officials are working with Goodyear as they try to figure out an aerodynamic and tire combination for the cars, which primarily will consist of new bodies that create more manufacturer identity.
But in doing so, NASCAR is trying to increase mechanical grip in the cars and decrease the reliance on aerodynamics in hopes of helping drivers be able to pass the leader. NASCAR is taking 160 pounds of weight out of the cars — 100 pounds out of the right side, 60 pounds out of the left — and also changing the rules as far as tire camber, but more must be done.
"Right now we're working on the combination of aerodynamics and mechanical grip, trying to get that balance out," NASCAR vice president of competition Robin Pemberton said. "The ultimate goal is really to improve our racing everywhere that we can and get the cars to work better when there's multiple cars on the track at the same time."
NASCAR and Goodyear conducted a test last week at Texas Motor Speedway and will conduct tests at Phoenix and Charlotte over the next three weeks.
At Texas, NASCAR had Paul Menard, Kyle Busch and Greg Biffle run in a line and try to pass. It wasn't the most successful of tests.
"When we got into following one another we feel like we've got a little more work to do with the car and the mechanical grip," Biffle said. "They seem to be pretty aero-tight, similar to our cars now, maybe a tick more."
NASCAR needs to conduct more tests, but time is at a premium to set the 2013 rules so teams can start building cars.

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