The Sanctions Authority made some changes to the rulebook prior to the trip to Kansas Speedway. Cup Series teams will have to use new coatings on the breaker plates to help address ongoing fire concerns.
Swelling coatings that comply with SFI 54.1 (eg, TEMPROTEX F1ER) are
The underside of the lower breaker panels, inside the exhaust hood panels, and the top surface of the rocker box are allowed,” according to the bulletin posted on Sept. 7. He also noted that teams are also allowed to apply paint to the right-hand side Tegris/MC2p/Polyweave Back Stop Panel (RHS). ).
Besides using coatings, NASCAR has also made another change. Teams shall install a side stopper/plug between the back of the front clamp weight box and the top of the splitter plate. The purpose is to reduce the transmission of tire debris from the spacer area.
Finally, the bulletin recommended increasing the clearance between the exhaust and the rocker box floor during exhaust installation. This is an ongoing development process in the wake of the fires at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Changes take place after comments from NASCAR executives
The issue of fires has been a topic of discussion throughout the 2022 Cup season. It intensified after Kevin Harvick’s No. 4 Stewart Haas Racing Ford Mustang suddenly caught fire at Darlington Raceway.
Harvick made strong comments in multiple interviews on the South Carolina track and then weighed in with a NASCAR executive after Labor Day. Scott Miller, Senior Vice President of Competition, appeared on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio on September 6, and said it was unacceptable for cars to catch fire.
Miller continued, saying that several cars are undergoing inspection so they can determine the cause of the recent fire. Miller also noted that they were working on various possible solutions that would eliminate these “triggers”.
The latest Rule Book update is the next step in the process, and will be in effect prior to the trip to Kansas Speedway. It remains to be seen if these changes eliminate the fires, but there will be some potential answers given on 9/11.
The latest fire had a huge impact on Harvick’s playoff tour
The recent fire, which occurred during the opening game of the Southern 500, had a huge impact on the outcome of the race. He sent Harvick onto the field when he was in the midst of a top-five streak, and hampered his chance of capturing crucial points.
Harvick entered the playoffs in a strong position. He had two wins, and was above the streak heading into some of his strongest paths. However, his day ended with a 33rd place finish after the fire.
Harvick is now at a disadvantage as he prepares to race a Kansas Speedway. It is 16th in the standings and 13 points below the cutoff line. This isn’t an insurmountable obstacle, but he’ll have to put in strong back-to-back performances to advance to the playoffs.
The 2014 Cup Series champion has two favorite tracks in the next table. He will head first to Kansas Speedway where he has three wins. He will then finish in the Round of 16 at Bristol Motor Speedway, another track where he has had three wins.
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