Could NASCAR Bring Back The Valence In 2018?

Not sure if this picture originated from but it was posted to r/NASCAR the other day and it is possiblythe most exciting NASCAR news in a decade. Obviously nothing is set in stone and we have no idea if NASCAR is even entertaining these ideas but the picture alone is enough to get you excited.

To their credit NASCAR is always trying to make the show better. After years of allowing teams to find insane amounts of downforce they have started to remove downforce in recent years with a splitter reduction and spoiler reduction. Teams though always find ways to make up for the loss of downforce. The changes on the car above will limit the amount of downforce a team can find.

Return of the Valence

The biggest problem in NASCAR has to be that the cars are glued to the race track. With the Car of Tomorrow came front splitters on cars. A plant of composite that provides an insane amount of downforce keeping the front end of the car glued to the racetrack. It’s a driver’s dream and a fans nightmare.

Pre-CoT NASCAR cars had a valence like the picture above displays. No splitter just merely a nose on the car that had to adhere to a ride height. That allows air under the front end and makes the car harder to driver and unglues it from the race track. Some of the best NASCAR racing happened pre-CoT and pre-splitter. Bring back the valence has been a movement among drivers for a long time.

When you slide into the grass with a splitter your day is done. The splitter grabs and absolutely rips the front of the car off. With a valence you won’t have this anymore.

Removal Of Side Skirts & Quarter Panel Cut In Half

Yes, yes, yes. All of this, it’s like someone is talking dirty to us right now. Do all of that, we won’t even ask questions. The side skirts and current quarter panels once again glue the car to the track. Both ride right off the race track which allows no air to get under the car thus providing a ton of downforce.

If you look at the #18 there you can see the side skirts have the car right on the track and the quarter panel comes all the way down to the track as well. That traps all the air under the car and allows the car to remain glued to the track like it’s on a rail.

The new changes would get rid of the side skirts and the cut the quarters in half. Brilliant idea to loosen these cars up and ensure they will no be right on the race track.

NASCAR Has To Do Something

Racing in NASCAR pre-CoT was exponentially better than what any version of the CoT and Gen6 cars have provided. We’ve had good races but few and far between. There is great racing deep in the field still but the Top 20 has become rather mundane. Combine the downforce problem with the TV networks not showing actual racing on track and you have the decline we currently see.

It’s always been a question from most people why they couldn’t have the safer body and car but the same components the old Cup cars had. The valence, ride height, no side skirts. NASCAR wanted to make the cars more technical and with that came rather boring racing at times. A return to this type of package would have a lot of those boys scrambling to figure it out.

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