A sequence which simply two years in the past was overwhelmingly dominated by oval tracks – together with 19 of 36 races held on tracks with 1-mile, 1.5-mile or 2-mile configurations – will in 2022 function a much more numerous portfolio.
Cup Sequence racing in 2022 will embrace competitors on 4 superspeedways, six street programs, a dust monitor, 5 brief tracks, 15 races on 1, 1.5 and 2-mile ovals and 5 races on distinctive ovals starting from 1.25 to 2.5-miles in size.
Along with the vastly altered Cup schedule, the 2022 season may also see the introduction of a Subsequent Gen automobile whose styling and composition of its new widespread Dallara-made chassis will higher replicate the producer identities of their showroom counterparts.
The 18-inch wheels and classy automobile our bodies will simply distinguish the Subsequent Gen automobile from its predecessors however its up to date know-how – resembling rack and pinion steering and impartial rear suspension – may also alter its efficiency on the monitor.
The schedule modifications and debut of the brand new automobile go away NASCAR officers with excessive expectations and nice anticipation for the 2022 season.
“The Subsequent Gen automobile shouldn’t be solely going to convey a number of relevance again to our autos, but it surely’s additionally going to create what I believe goes to be the perfect racing product we’ll have in our sport’s historical past,” stated Ben Kennedy, NASCAR’s senior vice chairman of technique and innovation.
“The vehicles look implausible. In seeing among the information and analysis they’ve accomplished, the racing product will likely be higher than ever.”
Nascar Subsequent Gen Toyota TRD Camry
Photograph by: Michael L. Levitt
Kennedy expects the dramatic evolution of the Cup Sequence schedule mixed with a brand new race automobile will check drivers and groups like by no means earlier than.
“You’ve gotten a handful of superspeedways, you’ve gotten a handful of intermediates, a handful of brief tracks, a little bit little bit of every part,” he stated.
“I believe with that variety within the schedule, it actually implies that whoever’s going to be that regular-season champion, finally the NASCAR Cup Sequence champion, is the perfect driver within the NASCAR Cup Sequence, and I might say in all probability among the best drivers on the earth, too.”
Regardless of having to introduce a lot of its schedule modifications this yr with areas of the nation nonetheless beneath COVID-19 restrictions, NASCAR has seen improved TV rankings and the brand new venues and races have been well-received by followers.
The most important query and potential stumbling block for NASCAR heading into 2022 will likely be ready to see if the Subsequent Gen automobile lives as much as its hype.
Even when it seems good, the automobile will nonetheless must carry out on the monitor and solely lately did NASCAR get greater than half-a-dozen of the brand new vehicles on the monitor at one time to conduct a check at Daytona Worldwide Speedway.
There are a number of extra multi-car exams scheduled within the coming months, together with on the Charlotte Roval, the Charlotte oval monitor, a December check at Phoenix and certain a repeat check at Daytona in January with many extra vehicles.
The primary actual show of recent venue and new automobile will come on 6 February subsequent yr when upwards of 25 Subsequent Gen vehicles will compete within the preseason Conflict exhibition race on a made-from-scratch quarter-mile asphalt monitor contained in the Los Angeles Coliseum.
By then, although, it will likely be solely two weeks till the season-opening Daytona 500.
And the die will likely be solid on a make-or-break season to recollect.