Horrible news out of Charlotte this week. Since the Car of Tomorrow when NASCAR fans were first introduced to the splitter they hated its existence. Fans have yearned for the day the sport would scrap the splitter and return to the front valence. Well friends we have some bad news.
The Splitter Is Here To Stay
When NASCAR announced this week the new format to the All-Star Race they also snuck in some new aero tweaks they’ll be using in the race as well. One of those tweaks is the single piece carbon fiber splitter/pan. The thought is it will help with ride height sensitivity and provide a stable aero platform in traffic. NASCAR’s current package was supposed to increase passing but instead has created a large aero push that has hindered passing.
NASCAR is testing this single piece splitter along with aero ducts that exit out of the hood. This is an effort to gather information for the NASCAR Gen 7 car which is slated to debut in 2021. What better way to gather information than in a real-world test with a decent number of cars on the track? There isn’t one so on one hand at least their experimenting and doing it in a race. Testing allows teams/drivers to skew results, etc.
“Provide A Stable Aero Platform” Here’s An Idea
Here’s a crazy idea, one that might be revolutionary and I’m willing to give this idea away for free. This idea limits aero dependency, aero push, and won’t destroy an entire race car if you go in the grass. Let me present to you:
A proven part of every NASCAR race car from the beginning of time until 2007. A front end piece that didn’t mow lawns, rip off the front end of a race car and didn’t turn into ice skates on a race car. The valance also didn’t produce the aero issues the splitter has and most of all it was cheaper.
Yes sir, the valance should be the way of the future, again.
Instead, NASCAR has opted to keep the splitter which is counterproductive to their claims of wanting more competitive racing. Taking front end downforce off of these cars would make the racing exponentially better. Not to be the “racing was better back in the day” guy but side by side racing was certainly more prevalent in the valance era. In the splitter era, all we hear about is an aero push, clean air, and a number of other issues that wouldn’t be there if NASCAR took a more simplistic approach to car design. Instead, each new iteration of car is being over-engineered. At some point, they’ll probably try to reinvent the wheel and tell us this new wheel is round. Moral of the story, stick with what works.
No series in the world has added downforce and seen an uptick in competitiveness. Not now, not ever.
Follow us on Twitter @ApexOff