The Cup Series playoffs are the main story now that the 16 drivers field is set, but there are a few other pressing concerns that the biggest names in NASCAR want to address. Specifically, they were talking loudly about the safety of new cars.
Joey Logano, Denny Hamlin, Kevin Harvick, Austin Dillon and Kyle Busch are just some of the drivers who have spoken loudly about how hard it is to feel the blows and the damage they do to their bodies. These comments increased frequently with Kurt Bosch exiting the playoffs due to a crash at Pocono Raceway on July 23.
“Yeah, it’s not better from a crashing point of view,” Harvick said during a media day on September 1st. “The hits are violent. In Sonoma, I hit the back of Car 2 so hard that it shut down my HANS, and I kept going. It was just up the hill.” , they checked it and hit it, my HANS shut off. Every hard blow and some of the smallest hits hurt you like they shouldn’t.
“Everyone knows the car is very stiff and I think when you look at the crash data, it’s not what the drivers feel in the car. They’ll say, ‘Okay, it was only 15 grams.’ Well, I’m telling you, some of those 15-gram hits look like It’s like 50 compared to the old cars.”
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NASCAR provided one explanation that sparked the speech
With so many drivers talking about the seriousness of these blows, there are questions as to why. Those who have had crashes say they are made worse by the cars’ stiffness. NASCAR offered a different explanation, saying that the angles of impact are different while the speeds are higher.
According to AP SportsDr. John Patalak, managing director of safety engineering at NASCAR, said drivers used to hit walls at angles between 14 and 16 degrees. The data shows they are now in their high teens or low 20s, he said.
“I don’t believe it. Impossible,” Kyle Bush said emphatically during his briefing session. “We spent 30 years with this design of that old car, 40 years, whatever, how many accidents have been recorded or whatever, and now you’re telling me about the different speeds at different angles? No way, no way.
“The crash I was in, the same accident, I got up on the wall and then basically cleaned it up and then crashed into the car in front of me and crashed into another car. I felt it more than I would in the old car. You can see it because the car is a little wrinkled or smashed and people are like “Oh, he can go on, it’s not that bad.” In a 6th generation crash, I would have finished that day. The coolant was out, and the rear bumper cap came out. The wrecks don’t look that bad because the drivers are Who bears the brunt of it.”
Drivers have expressed frustration with the data
Several drivers spoke of the violence of the blows, and Christopher Bell reported that he had a headache after two apparently minor accidents. These statements do not match the data. Dr. Patalak said the crash data is similar to that collected over the years in the 6G era.
As Denny Hamlin explained, he doesn’t know if the next generation car is as safe as it can be. Teams no longer have control over the parts they use to limit these effects. NASCAR controls everything, and it’s “up to them” to make sure the teams have the safest gear.
What Hamlin does know, however, is that the Daytona International Motorcycle crash had lingering effects. Constant pain prevented him from competing in the Xfinity Series race on September 3.
“The best way I can describe it is that I got hit in a bar and someone kicked me in the ribs while I was on the floor,” Hamlin said on September 1st. The entire right side felt shattered. It was one when I hit the wall for sure – that first hit to the wall – and then someone came up and hit me on the left side. That was another huge hike, too. I’m not really sure who did the most damage.”
The interesting aspect is that kick violence was a major talking point early in the season, but the conversation fizzled out during the middle of the regular season. Now the drivers are getting more vocal about their concerns as they approach an intense period of the season.
“I think everyone calmed down [earlier in the year] Because they thought something was going to get better gradually,” Harvick said. “And I think everyone is done with it now because it’s still happening, and now you have someone who has been hurt, someone else has been hurt in some kind of way from a religious point of view, and I think everyone wants to know what Is progress here?
“How are we going to make this better? What is the plan? If not this year, what is the plan for next year? What do we do? How are we going to prevent men from getting hurt? So, I think everyone is a little disappointed because progress is as slow as it has been.”
read the following: Chase Elliott has strong words about comfort level in the playoff
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