Joey Logano will take his turn testing the next-generation NASCAR Cup Series car in its second on-track session on Monday and Tuesday at ISM Raceway near Phoenix.
The 2018 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series champion will get behind the wheel of the same prototype that Austin Dillon piloted on Oct. 8-9 at Richmond Raceway. The car was one of two built by Richard Childress Racing in collaboration with NASCAR.
The Childress team has long been an R&D choice of the sanctioning body due to its longstanding history in the sport and its massive competition campus in Welcome, North Carolina.
The car will make its debut in 2021 with Daytona Speedweeks.
Logano detailed his initial thoughts about driving the car during the championship banquet media availabilities last week in Nashville, Tennessee. Heâs entering the sessions with an open mind,
Logano offered a preview of his drive during Championâs Week media availabilities last week in Nashville, Tennessee, saying he was entering the test without preconceived notions about the next-gen car.
âI think a lot of it is just understanding, for one, just some durability stuff but also just understanding what works and what doesnât,â Logano said. âIâd like to, once we get to some point, Iâd like to make some longer runs just to kind of see where things go, but I think thereâs just so many differences with the car that we need to understand.
âI think thereâs some aero package differences, some tires weâre changing will be a little different and some drivability things, but I think itâs still very much in the beginnings of the development process. With only having one car out there, itâs hard to say one aero package over another besides just an aero balance, so Iâm looking forward to it. Iâm looking forward to getting back in a race car. Itâs been a few weeks, so I like doing that, and I’m just curious more than anything of just how this thingâs going to drive.â
The next-generation car will also feature an 18-inch, lower-profile tire instead of the current traditional 15-inch version. In theory, a wider and lower profile tire could provide more mechanical grip to offset the aerodynamic grip that dominates the current package.
A new engine formula will follow in either 2021 or 2022, and it is expected to eventually gain some type of electrification or energy-recovery system in addition to a base 550-hpÂ powerplant.
Another test of the car is scheduled in January at Homestead-Miami Speedway.