Covers and reports on known/reported Team Testing and Organized NASCAR Testing
Tire Testing: for news on tire testing, see my Tire Sponsor News and Testing page
NASCAR Test Ban May Not Be Cast In Stone: NASCAR's Senior Vice President for Innovation and Racing Development Gene Stefanyshyn commented today on a statement by Roush Fenway Racing co-owner Jack Roush that the sanctioning body's ban on independent testing in 2015 may not be cast in stone. "I think the final word on testing for next year has not been uttered yet by NASCAR," said Roush on Sirius XM NASCAR Radio's Dialed In yesterday (Wed, Oct 29th). "My understanding is there is substantial resistance from Goodyear on what's... on the table right now in terms of their being able to supply the tires for the number of teams that NASCAR anticipates going to the Goodyear tire tests. I will be less surprised if it changes than if it stays the way it is"
Stefanyshyn appeared to lend credence to those comments today (Thurs, Oct 30th), saying in a written release, "When we announced on Sept. 23 the rules package for the 2015 season, we stated that we were eliminating all team testing and would be working with Goodyear to build a unified testing plan in which the teams could participate. We currently are working through that process and have had on-going discussions with Goodyear to develop a proposal that we will share with the teams in the near future."(Godfather Motorsports)(10-31-2014)
Vickers tests 2015 Camry at Auto Club: Brian Vickers and the #55 Aaron's Dream Machine team at Michael Waltrip Racing got a jump on the 2015 season testing the newly unveiled 2015 Toyota Camry this week at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, CA. Vickers on testing the 2015 Camry: "It was good to get some time behind the wheel of the 2015 Camry (on Tuesday.) We brought a lot of engineers from MWR and Toyota Racing Development to Fontana to work on the car. I don't know if you have ever been to a test, but it isn't very exciting for a race car driver. I drive for a couple of laps, tell them what I feel, then the engineers will pour over the data, make some changes and back I go out on the track. We just repeat that throughout the day. It might not be as fun as racing but testing is where we learn what the Goodyear tires, our car and engine like and don't like. I enjoy the science behind testing. The more you learn in testing the better you will be in the race. With the reduction in testing planned for next season, days like this are very valuable. So far I love what I see with the new Camry. It looks good, and drives good."(MWR)(10-30-2014)
Homestead testing UPDATE2: Five teams will test at Homestead-Miami Speedway next Tuesday and Wednesday (Oct. 28-29): Stewart Haas Racing, Hendrick Motorsports, Team Penske, Roush Fenway Racing and Joe Gibbs Racing.(NASCAR)(10-24-2014)
UPDATE: Six NASCAR Sprint Cup Series teams and more than 15 of the top NASCAR Sprint Cup Series cars are slated to test at Homestead-Miami Speedway tomorrow, Oct. 28, with an optional testing day on Wednesday Oct. 29. Testing will run from 9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Seven of the eight drivers in the Eliminator Round of the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup are set to test their cars at Homestead-Miami Speedway in preparation of competing at the Ford EcoBoost 400, where the Championship 4 drivers will compete for the 2014 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship. Testing will be open to the public from 9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. in the infield Pit Road Cabanas. Fans may enter and park in the parking lot on SW 336th Street and 137th Ave and take a tram to the infield to watch testing. Snacks and drinks will be available for purchase in the infield in the Pit Box.
NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Teams Testing
#2 - Brad Keselowski, Team Penske*
#22 - Joey Logano, Team Penske*
#5 - Kasey Kahne, Hendrick Motorsports
#24 - Jeff Gordon, Hendrick Motorsports*
#88 - Dale Earnhardt, Jr., Hendrick Motorsports
#48 - Jimmie Johnson, Hendrick Motorsports
#16 - Greg Biffle, Roush Fenway Racing
#17 - Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Roush Fenway Racing
#99 - Carl Edwards, Roush Fenway Racing*
#11 - Denny Hamlin, Joe Gibbs Racing*
#18 - Kyle Busch, Joe Gibbs Racing
#20 - Matt Kenseth, Joe Gibbs Racing*
#14 - Tony Stewart, Stewart-Haas Racing
#4 - Kevin Harvick, Stewart-Haas Racing*
#41 - Kurt Busch, Stewart-Haas Racing
*Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup drivers in the Eliminator Round. #31-Newman is the Chase driver not testing.(HMS)(10-28-2014)
UPDATE2 Six NASCAR Sprint Cup Series teams and more than 15 of the top NASCAR Sprint Cup Series cars tested their cars at Homestead-Miami Speedway today in preparation of the Ford EcoBoost 400, November 16. The two-day session will conclude on Wednesday, Oct. 29. Seven of the eight drivers in the Eliminator Round of the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup took their cars to the track Tuesday to test and tune their cars as much as they can before heading to South Florida in November, where they could possibly be one of the Championship 4 drivers racing for the title at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
"That's why you see so many cars down here testing," #22-Joey Logano said. "It's all going to come down to Homestead. Making sure you have a fast car down here is important because that's going to be the difference of winning a championship or not. I think you're going to have to win here to win the Championship."
"This is really a key test for us," #2-Brad Keselowski said. "It's our final test, with NASCAR's testing ban, so there's something to be said for that. We've have solid performances here, but we want to find a little bit more to be able to win. You have to enter Homestead with the expectation that you have to win to win the Championship and we've got two cars here in the hunt to be able to do that."
Two drivers also testing at Homestead-Miami Speedway today are #24-Jeff Gordon and #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. for Hendrick Motorsports. The pair finished first and second at Martinsville Speedway last weekend, respectively, and Gordon is still in contention for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Championship in the Eliminator Round. Earnhardt was eliminated following the final race of the Contender Round at Talladega. "We're in a bit of a different situation than Jeff is," Earnhardt said. "We're looking forward to the race. We feel like we had a good car here last year, we just want to learn a few more things and looking forward to the race."
"It's all about speed," Gordon said. "This is a very challenging racetrack, especially in the heat of the day. It's difficult to get the balance right on this track. We have had some good cars here the last couple of years and want to simulate that. We hope that we're in the battle for the Championship when we come back here, and if we are, we have a car that can win the race."
#99-Carl Edwards is also still in contention for the Championship title, and headed to South Florida to work on his car as well and learn more about the 1.5-mile oval. "It's nice to come down here, the weather is beautiful and this is one of my favorite racetracks," Edwards said. "We're hoping to be as prepared as we can be for a championship battle at Ford Championship Weekend. It's an opportunity to make sure if we are one of the final four that we can perform."(HMS)(10-29-2014)
Testing coming up at Martinsville: Drivers #2-Brad Keselowski, #22-Joey Logano, #31-Ryan Newman, #27-Paul Menard, #3-Austin Dillon, #13-Casey Mears, Joe Nemechek,and Ryan Blaney will be testing at Martinsville Speedway in advance of the Goody's Headache Relief Shot 500 on Tuesday, October 14.(Martinsville Speedway)(10-11-2014)
Several teams to test at Phoenix: Nearly a dozen NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers, including seven of the 12 drivers who advanced to the Contender round of the Chase for the Sprint Cup, will conduct a private testing session at Phoenix International Raceway on Tuesday, Oct. 14 and Wednesday, Oct. 15. The testing session will be closed to the public. The test will allow teams to gather data in preparation for the Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at PIR on Sunday, Nov. 9. As the final Eliminator round race, after which the Chase field will be cut from eight to the final four drivers for the Championship round, the Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500 carries added significance this season. Drivers testing include: #5-Kasey Kahne, #24-Jeff Gordon, #48-Jimmie Johnson, #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr., #11-Denny Hamlin, #18-Kyle Busch, #20-Matt Kenseth, #15-Clint Bowyer, #55-Brian Vickers, #66-Brett Moffit, #95-Michael McDowell, Camping World Truck Series driver #00-Cole Custer.(PIR)(10-10-2014)
McMurray & Larson to test Martinsville on Wednesday: Chip Ganassi Racing drivers #1-Jamie McMurray and #42-Kyle Larson are scheduled to test at Martinsville Speedway on Wednesday, Oct. 8 in preparation for the upcoming Goody's Headache Relief Shot 500.(Martinsville Speedway)(10-7-2014)
NASCAR bans private testing in 2015: NASCAR announced a new rules package Tuesday that will ban all private testing in 2015, including the annual Daytona 500 test, and levy the stiffest penalty possible on any team caught conducting its own sessions. The only testing allowed next season will be sessions conducted by NASCAR or Goodyear. Any team caught testing on its own will receive a P6 penalty, the highest on NASCAR's new punishment scale. It carries a loss of 150 points, a minimum $150,000 fine and a six-week suspension for the crew chief and other crew members. "It will be a huge penalty if anyone is caught," said Steve O'Donnell, NASCAR's executive vice president and chief racing development officer.
The three-day annual Daytona 500 test each January was as much about promoting the season-opening race as it was for teams to shake off any cobwebs from the offseason. O'Donnell said that time will now be used to send drivers on a cross-country promotional tour similar to the "Chase Across North America" that NASCAR held this month with its 16 Chase championship drivers assigned to visit various race markets.(Associated Press)(9-24-2014)
Penske, Roush testing at Texas: Less than 24 hours after his impressive victory at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, Team Penske driver #22-Joey Logano turned his focus to Texas Motor Speedway, site of an all-important two-day test session beginning Monday. Logano, along with Team Penske teammate and current Sprint Cup Series points leader #2-Brad Keselowski, were joined by Roush Fenway Racing drivers #99-Carl Edwards, #16-Greg Biffle and #17-Ricky Stenhouse Jr. in the test session. With the intensity of the Chase for the Sprint Cup and the first round of eliminations on the horizon, teams looked at both the present and the future - focusing on this weekend's race at Dover International Speedway while making preparations for the AAA Texas 500 on Sunday, Nov. 2 at Texas Motor Speedway.(TMS)(9-23-2014)
Update on testing : Stewart-Haas Racing, Levine Family Racing and Front Row Motsports (#24-David Ragan only) are testing Tuesday and Wednesday at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. Joe Gibbs Racing, Team Penske and JTG Daugherty are testing Tuesday and Wednesday at Charlotte Motor Speedway. This marks the first of four tests teams are allowed at Cup tracks for Penske. Here are other upcoming tests dates:
Sept. 22-23 at Texas Motor Speedway - Team Penske and Roush Fenway Racing.
Oct. 7-8 at Martinsville Speedway - Chip Ganassi Racing.
Oct. 13-14 at Martinsville Speedway - Team Penske and Germain Racing.
Oct. 21-22 at Homstead-Miami Speedway - Stewart-Haas Racing.
Oct. 28-29 at Homestead-Miami Speedway - Hendrick Motorsports, Joe Gibbs Racing, Team Penske and Richard Childress Racing.(Motor Racing Network)(9-3-2014)
Hendrick Motorsports tests at Martinsville...comments: Martinsville Speedway's position as the first race in the Eliminator Round of the Chase for the Sprint Cup has the track's most successful drivers understanding the importance of the Goody's Headache Relief Shot 500. #24-Jeff Gordon and #48-Jimmie Johnson, who lead all active drivers with eight Martinsville wins apiece, spent the past two days testing at the iconic half-mile speedway. The two were joined by their Hendrick Motorsports teammates, #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr. and #5-Kasey Kahne.
"You want to give yourself every opportunity to win at every race that's in the Chase to guarantee yourself moving forward," said Gordon. "We know that Martinsville is a great track for us. I think all of Hendrick Motorsports understands that we've had great success here and we have confidence here and we can run really well here, and it's important. It's in the Chase."
"We haven't tested here in a long, long time, so as a group we kind of sat in a room and raised our hands as to what tracks in the Chase we wanted to test at and the majority wanted to come to Martinsville," said Johnson. "We're not reinventing the wheel while we're here, but we're certainly learning a lot and are hopeful to strike when we come back in the Chase."
Some of Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s biggest wins have come on NASCAR's largest tracks. But it is the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series' shortest track ... Martinsville Speedway ... that is a sentimental favorite for Earnhardt. Part of that sentiment stems from Earnhardt's love for the roots of racing, and no track has deeper roots in NASCAR than Martinsville Speedway. And some of that sentiment comes from Earnhardt's great success on the half-mile oval. Earnhardt Jr. doesn't have a Martinsville win or one of the iconic grandfather clock trophies in his house, but his driver rating at Martinsville is consistently among the top two or three in the sport. He has 11 top-five finishes and 16 top-10 finishes on the difficult short-track and has finished second twice and third four times. While some drivers don't especially look forward to 500 laps on the tight confines of Martinsville Speedway, Earnhardt relishes the two trips a year to Martinsville.
"I just love short-track racing. I don't really like running into people, but I like rubbing," Earnhardt said during his lunch break Tuesday. "I can appreciate someone using the bumper to get a spot without really causing too much of a problem for the guy who gets moved out of the way. I can respect that because you have got to do that sometimes. I feel like you come to expect that at this particular track. Since we're all fighting to get around the bottom, you can only wait so long behind a guy before you have to get creative and get physical with the race car. I can take it as well as I can dish it. I do enjoy racing here. The success we have here just comes from a lot of testing, a lot of practice," said Earnhardt, who finished third in the STP 500 at Martinsville last spring. "When we first started racing here, I wasn't very good and I remember coming several times and testing the first couple of seasons I was in the Cup series and that seemed to get us in a good direction. We got some good balance on our cars and what we need to get a car around this place and keep the tires on it."(Martinsville Speedway)(8-29-2014)
Many Teams Testing at various tracks: Seven organizations are testing this week at tracks that will host a Chase for the Sprint Cup race, starting a push toward the championship. Meanwhile, two organizations - representing five Chase drivers - have yet to use any of their four tests allowed at tracks that host Cup races. Testing today and Tuesday at Chicagoland Speedway - the opening race in the Chase next month - are Stewart-Haas Racing, Roush Fenway Racing, Michael Waltrip Racing, Richard Petty Motorsports and Chip Ganassi Racing. Stewart-Haas Racing stated that Tony Stewart's team is not testing at Chicago.
Hendrick Motorsports tests Tuesday and Wednesday at Martinsville Speedway. Team Penske and Joe Gibbs Racing have saved their four tests for the end of the season. Both will use their first test Sept. 2-3 at Charlotte Motor Speedway. They'll be joined by JTG Daugherty. Team Penske drivers Brad Keselowski and Joey Logano - who have each scored three wins this season - also are scheduled to test at Texas, Martinsville and Homestead. Joe Gibbs Racing drivers Kyle Busch, Denny Hamlin and Matt Kenseth are also scheduled to test Phoenix, Homestead and one other track to be determined.
Travis Geisler, competition director at Team Penske, admits the decisions on which tracks to choose were "hotly contested" within the organization. Geisler said the organization selected Charlotte because it has "been a little hit and miss" there. "I'd say the track we're best at are kind of Kentucky, Texas and Chicago,'' he said. "The Kansas and Charlotte (tracks) are maybe a little weaker, so we want to try to shore up that side of it.'' Although Penske isn't going to Kansas, it can still get testing information from there. Leavine Family Racing, a Ford team with Michael McDowell, is testing today and Tuesday at Kansas Speedway. The team gets chassis and parts from Team Penske. As a Ford team, information from Leavine's test can be analyzed by Penske officials.
Although Geisler said Texas is a good track for the organization, that's still one the team will test instead of Phoenix where Kevin Harvick dominated in March, while Keselowski was third and Logano fourth. "We feel like Texas is a place we need to win,'' Geisler said. "We feel like that's our best opportunity to capitalize on winning. If your car is good enough, you can race to the front.'' Geisler also noted that since the Phoenix race is shorter than the Texas race, it's more difficult to make it back toward the front. Thus, the decision to test at Texas instead. Geisler said that the team will test Martinsville because it needs to match the Hendrick Motorsports cars there. Another key is that is the first race in the third round of the Chase. Whoever wins that race will be among the four to race for the championship at Homestead-Miami Speedway and can begin focusing on that event instead worrying as much about Texas and Phoenix.
Here's a look at confirmed testing dates in the coming weeks.
Aug. 25-26: Chicagoland Speedway
Stewart-Haas Racing: #4, #10, #14, #41
Roush Fenway Racing, #16, #17, #99
Michael Waltrip Racing, #15, #55, #66
Richard Petty Motorsports, #9, #43
Chip Ganassi Racing, #1, #42
Aug. 25-26 : Kansas Speedway
Leavine Family Racing, #95
Aug. 26-27: Martinsville Speedway
Hendrick Motorsports: #5, #24, #48, #88
Sept. 2-3: New Hampshire Motor Speedway
Stewart-Haas Racing: #4, #10, #14, #41
Leavine Family Racing: #95
Front Row Motorsports: #34, #35, #38
Sept. 2-3: Charlotte Motor Speedway
Team Penske: #2, #12
JTG Daugherty: #47
Joe Gibbs Racing: #11, #18, #20
Sept. 22-23: Texas Motor Speedway
Team Penske: #2, #12
Roush Fenway Racing: #16, #17, #99
Oct. 7-8: Martinsville Speedway
Chip Ganassi Racing: #1, #42
Oct. 13-14: Martinsville Speedway
Team Penske: #2, #22
Germain Racing: #13
(Motor Racing Network)(8-25-2014)
Teams test 2015 rules changes at Michigan UPDATE: Nine NASCAR Sprint Cup Series teams will remain at Michigan International Speedway one additional day on Monday to test aerodynamic and engine combinations for the 2015 racing season. According to NASCAR officials, the test is designed to validate extensive work done by the sanctioning body's racing development team. Gene Stefanyshyn, vice president Innovation and Racing Development for NASCAR, said two different packages featuring various changes would be tested on the 2-mile track at MIS.
"We have a prime rules package and also will be doing a low downforce package, because some of the drivers have been very vocal," Stefanyshyn said. "They think (low downforce) is a solution ... so we're going to try one of those." The prime rules package will include the use of dive planes, a 9-inch spoiler, six-percent rear differential gear ratio, three different power levels (engine horsepower) as well as a driver adjustable track bar. Dive planes are small strips on the left and right side of the front bumper areas about halfway between the splitter and hood.
The engine changes will vary from the current 850 horsepower to 800 and 750 hp. Stefanyshyn said those changes would be made during Monday's test through the use of different sized restrictor plates in order to gauge the effects. If it is determined that less horsepower works best with the aerodynamic changes being considered, how best to accomplish that for next season would still have to be decided.
The test is slated to get underway at 9:00am/et with six different sessions scheduled throughout the day. Teams are expected to make single-file 15-lap runs in every other session, with double-file runs making up the remaining 15-lap sessions. Drivers scheduled to participate are: #1-Jamie McMurray, #5-Kasey Kahne, #10-Danica Patrick, #27-Paul Menard #2-Brad Keselowski, #17-Ricky Stenhouse Jr., #43-Aric Almirola, #11-Denny Hamlin, and either #15-Clint Bowyer or #55-Brian Vickers.(NASCAR.com)(8-14/18-2014)
UPDATE: Just one day after Jeff Gordon grabbed the checkered flag in the Pure Michigan 400, NASCAR and teams were back testing on the two-mile Michigan International Speedway, gathering crucial data for the development of the 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series rules package. Six different configurations were evaluated throughout the test. Throughout today's test, focus was on aerodynamics and power optimization. Ten teams were onsite throughout the day running through all six configurations. More than 160 laps were turned at Michigan by each team. Data will be taken back to the Research and Development Center in Concord, North Carolina to be analyzed and modeled as NASCAR finalizes its 2015 rules package for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.(NASCAR)(8-18-2014)
Several teams planning tests: On Monday and Tuesday, Aug. 25-26, five teams will test at Chicagoland Speedway, site of the first race in the Chase. Those testing: Stewart-Haas Racing, Roush Fenway Racing, Michael Waltrip Racing, Richard Petty Motorsports and Chip Ganassi Racing. On Tuesday and Wednesday, Aug. 26-27, Hendrick Motorsports will test at Martinsville Speedway, which hosts the seventh race in the Chase - and first in the third round.(NASCAR)(8-16-2014)
Testing at Atlanta UPDATE: Tuesday and Wednesday, Richard Childress Racing and Germain Racing will both test at Atlanta Motor Speedway.(NASCAR)(8-5-2014)
UPDATE: All three of Richard Childress Racing's full-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series teams, along with a fourth car driven by Ty Dillon, completed a two-day test session on Aug. 5 & 6 at Atlanta Motor Speedway in preparation for the Oral-B USA 500 on Labor Day Weekend. Dillon will attempt to qualify and make his NASCAR Sprint Cup Series debut on Labor Day Weekend. The testing was held in the late afternoon and evening which simulated racing conditions the teams are anticipating Labor Day Weekend. The drivers logged lots of laps over the course of the two day test with speeds increasing as more rubber was laid down on the track. #31-Ryan Newman posted one of the fastest laps on Aug. 6 at 189.086 miles per hour while Austin Dillon turned a fast lap of 187.805 mile per hour.(AMS)(8-8-2014)
Stewart-Haas; McDowell to test at New Hampshire: With the Chase for the Sprint Cup Championship moving to an elimination-style format for the first time, the stakes have never been higher for the annual Sylvania 300 on Sept. 21 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. One race team could have the inside track for a strong run on Sept. 21, as Stewart-Haas Racing will be in town for a test and tune session on Sept. 2 and 3. With seven combined wins at the Magic Mile - #4-Kevin Harvick, #41-Kurt Busch, #14-Tony Stewart and #10-Danica Patrick will log laps and exercise their cars in an effort to get the best possible results in the Sylvania 300. Michael McDowell, a part-time driver of the #95 for Leavine Family Racing, will also take part in the test session.The grandstands will be open and free of charge to the public from 9:00am-5:00pm both days.(NHMS)(8-7-2014)
Conley tests for RCR at Nashville: Vienna, W.Va. native Cale Conley was able to take 160 test laps in a Sprint Cup car for Richard Childress Racing at Nashville Superspeedway Friday.(News Sentinel)(7-27-2014)
Allmendinger, RPM to test at Watkins Glen UPDATE: "We tested at Watkins Glen International last year and it really helped and we are looking forward to testing again on Monday and Tuesday (July 28-29)," Allmendinger said. "We tested at Sonoma Raceway and it showed it helped. So, we're doing the same for Watkins Glen. We will run through a plan and have a good baseline. We know the track will not be the same when we go back, but we are looking to find a good balance to make sure when we get there, we have some good ideas to work through practice. It's pretty basic. Testing Watkins Glen is all about getting a good balance and good ideas for the car when we go back in a few weeks."(JTG Daugherty Racing), Richard Petty Motorsports will also be testing at the same time.(7-23-2014)
UPDATE: Six NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers are scheduled to test at Watkins Glen International on Monday and Tuesday in preparation for the Cheez-It 355 at The Glen. Scheduled to test are #9-Marcos Ambrose, #43-Aric Almirola, #47-AJ Allmendinger, #78-Martin Truex Jr., #3-Austin Dillon and Ty Dillon. Fans can watch for free at the Argetsinger Grandstand, located outside of Turn 2 on the road course. The grandstand is open from 10:00am to 5:00pm.(Elmiria Star Gazette)(7-27-2014)
Roush Fenway tests at Michigan: Roush Fenway Racing Cup drivers #17-Ricky Stenhouse Jr., #16-Greg Biffle and #99-Carl Edwards spent Monday and Tuesday using one of their NASCAR allotted tests at Michigan International Speedway in preparation for both the August MIS race and this weekend's Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.(Ford Racing)(7-23-2014)
MWR, RCR to test at New Hampshire: Michael Waltrip Racing and Richard Childress Racing will be looking for the inside track on the Camping World RV Sales 301 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race on July 13 when they visit New Hampshire Motor Speedway for a test and tune session on July 1 and 2. Defending July NHMS race winner #55-Brian Vickers, two-time NHMS winner #15-Clint Bowyer and four-time NHMS winner #66-Jeff Burton will all be logging laps for MWR on the 1.058-mile oval. The two-day session also marks the first time the famed #3 will race around the Magic Mile, as rookie RCR driver Austin Dillon will join teammates #27-Paul Menard and three-time NHMS winner #31-Ryan Newman at the testing. The grandstands will be open and free of charge to the public from 9:00am-5:00pm both days.(NHMS)(6-26-2014)
NASCAR announces 2015 Daytona testing dates: As NASCAR teams prepare for next week's round two at Daytona International Speedway following Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s memorable 2014 Daytona 500 victory, plans for 2015's season launch are already underway. NASCAR and Daytona International Speedway announced that Preseason Thunder will take place one week later in 2015. NASCAR Sprint Cup Series teams will hit the track on January 15-16 as they prepare for the 57th running of the Daytona 500 on February 22, 2015. In the event of rain, additional track time will be added on Saturday, January 17.
"Each year, Preseason Thunder gives fans a sneak peek into the upcoming season, and specifically, NASCAR's crown jewel, the Daytona 500," said Robin Pemberton, vice president of competition and racing development. "In 2015, the date will change. The anticipation, and the thrill of cars returning to the race track, will not. A later starting date for January testing will be more convenient for both teams and fans," Chitwood said. "Both testing sessions are important opportunities for teams as they prepare for their season-opening events ... It's also an exciting time for fans as they get gear up for the start of the new season."
The Preseason Thunder Fan Fest, the companion event to NASCAR Sprint Cup Series testing, is scheduled on Thursday night, Jan. 15. Tickets for Preseason Thunder Fan Fest as well as a schedule of driver question-and-answer and autograph sessions will be available at a later date.(NASCAR)(6-25-2014)
Testing at Indy UPDATE: There are six Sprint Cup Series drivers expected to participate testing at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Monday and Tuesday, June 16 & 17. #14-Stewart, #31-Newman, #16-Biffle, #22-Logano, #18-Busch and #15-Bowyer. As is customary in these things, the event will be officially closed to the public but at the south end of the facility, in front of the IMS Hall of Fame Museum, will be open for free spectator viewing.(Indianapolis Star)(6-13-2014)
UPDATE: Six drivers hit the track at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Tuesday afternoon for a tire test ahead of July's Brickyard 400. During the closed portion of the test, #14-Tony Stewart made contact with the Turn 1 wall. He was not transported by paramedics, according to IMS officials. He is, however, in contact with NASCAR medical personnel. In addition to Stewart, #31-Ryan Newman, #15-Clint Bowyer, #22-Joey Logano, #18-Kyle Busch and #16-Greg Biffle were part of the test. Drivers go through tire tests all the time throughout the year, and Bowyer candidly summed up what the drivers get out of them. "Testing sucks, I'm not going to beat around the bush about it," said Bowyer, laughing. "It's so much more fun to come here and compete...You go out there as a driver and make a few laps, and come back in and complain about it, it wasn't very good, or it may have been good. Then, you make more changes and go back out and try again." Newman, who won the Brickyard in 2013, was just happy to be home in Indiana. "It always will be a special place. Not just because I won here, but I have family here," said Newman. "We went over and played some putt-putt last night, rode some go-carts. That type of thing I don't get to do very often. Just in general, the Speedway is a special place."(WISH TV)(6-18-2014)
Newman & Dillon test at VIR: #31-Ryan Newman and #3-Austin Dillon participated in an RCR team test at Virginia International Raceway in Alton, Va., on Wednesday (today). Last week, all three RCR Cup teams tested at Pocono Raceway in preparation for this weekend's event.(RCR)(6-4-2014)
Kurt Busch Road-Course Testing: on Tuesday, June 3, #41-Kurt Busch and team tested at Road Atlanta in Braselton, Georgia as part of its road-course testing program in preparation for the upcoming races at Sonoma, California and Watkins Glen, New York.(SHR/TSC)(6-4-2014)
Allmendinger to test Sonoma UPDATE: #47-A.J. Allmendinger is scheduled to take part in a two-day test session at Sonoma Raceway on Tuesday, June 3, in advance of next month's Toyota/Save Mart 350. This marks the final scheduled test at Sonoma Raceway prior to race weekend.(Sonoma Raceway), the public is allowed to watch the practice.(6-1-2014)
UPDATE: #47-AJ Allmendinger wrapped up the first day of a two-day test session at Sonoma Raceway on Tuesday. Allmendinger, a Los Gatos native, and his JTG Daugherty Racing team are testing in advance of the Toyota/Save Mart 350 later this month (June 20-22). The team completed approximately 63 laps of testing on Tuesday, all in race trim, and will return for a second full day on Wednesday. "With our race team being as small as we are, we don't get much test time, so any track time we get helps us focus on the weekend and future," Allmendinger said. "These tests are good because for me, as a driver, you don't have to focus on other people, you just focus on your car and what feels good." Not only is Sonoma Raceway a home track for Allmendinger, it's also a home track for his sponsor, The Clorox Company, based in Oakland. "Road-course racing, I've always thought, you can wring a bit more out of the car, whether it's braking or how you use the curbs or the lines you choose from," said Allmendinger. "So, that's why I enjoy it and that's why I feel like we can come here and have a shot to do well. And, if we put ourselves in position to win the race, then that's great.(Sonoma Raceway)(6-4-2014)
Hendrick, Ganassi testing at New Hampshire: A six-time defending NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion. The current series' points leader. The winner of this year's Daytona 500. And the favorite to win this year's Rookie of the Year. All four and more will be on-track at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on Tuesday and Wednesday, as track officials announced that Hendrick Motorsports and Ganassi Racing will hold a test session at the facility in preparation for the Camping World RV Sales 301 on July 13. Included in the field will be Hendrick drivers #48-Jimmie Johnson, #24-Jeff Gordon, #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr., and #5-Kasey Kahne. #42-Kyle Larson and #1-Jamie McMurray will also be testing under the Ganassi Racing moniker. The grandstands will be open and free of charge to the public from 9:00am-5:00pm both days. The two-day test session will take place exactly two months before NASCAR returns to New Hampshire Motor Speedway for the Camping World RV Sales 301. This will be the first of two NASCAR Sprint Cup Series team tests this season at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. Michael Waltrip Racing and Richard Childress Racing are also planning a combined test session in the first week of July, one week before the July Camping World RV Sales 301 NASCAR weekend. Dates and information will be released at a later time.(NHMS)(6-3-2014)
Testing at Pocono this week UPDATES: Twelve drivers are scheduled to test at Pocono Raceway on Tuesday, May 27, 2014. Drivers scheduled to test: #51-Justin Allgaier, #7-Michael Annett, #15-Clint Bowyer, #66-Jeff Burton, #3-Austin Dillon, #42-Kyle Larson, #1-Jamie McMurray, #27-Paul Menard, #31-Ryan Newman, #36-Reed Sorenson, #78-Martin Truex, Jr. and #55-Brian Vickers. No Ford teams are scheduled to test. The test is closed to the public. In the event of inclement weather, rain date is Wednesday, May 28th. Drivers scheduled to test may change without notice.(Pocono Raceway)(5-26-2014)
UPDATE: Pocono Raceway will open their gates, for fans, for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series teams who will be testing on Tuesday, May 27 and Wednesday, May 28. A limited seating section of the Grandstands will be open from 9 am - 5 pm both day. Fans may access the Grandstands by entering the track property at Gate 5 (off Long Pond Road). From there, cones will guide fans to park by Gate 11. Admission and parking is FREE for the two-day test session. Fans may bring coolers, but glass of any kind, is strictly prohibited.(Pocono Raceway)(5-26-2014)
UPDATE 2: More than two dozen NASCAR Sprint Cup drivers were testing Tuesday at various tracks across the country. Pocono Raceway was busy with teams from Michael Waltrip Racing, Richard Childress Racing, Chip Ganassi Racing, Furniture Row Racing, HScott Motorsports, Tommy Baldwin Racing and Go Fas Racing. Richard Petty Motorsports tested Tuesday with #9-Marcos Ambrose and #43-Aric Almirola at Michigan International Speedway and will return Wednesday. Several teams tested at road courses in preparation for next month's race at Sonoma Raceway. Testing at Virginia International Raceway on Tuedsay: #41-Kurt Busch, #4-Kevin Harvick, #99-Carl Edwards, #16-Greg Biffle, #17-Ricky Stenhouse Jr., #23-Alex Bowman, #83-Ryan Truex, #26-Cole Whitt and #13-Casey Mears. Testing at Road Atlanta on Tuesday: #2-Brad Keselowski, #22-Joey Logano, #10-Danica Patrick and #14-Tony Stewart.(Motor Racing Network) (5-28-2014)
Mears continues testing at Darlington Tuesday: A test session at Darlington Raceway featuring NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Casey Mears will be FREE and open to the public today, April 1, from 1 pm - 9 pm. Mears, who drives the No. 13 GEICO Chevy SS for Germain Racing, had already turned laps around the track Too Tough To Tame on Monday and will do so again today for the fans. Darlington Raceway will open two sections of the Colvin Grandstand on the backstretch of the track for fans to watch the test throughout the afternoon and evening under the lights. The ticket office will remain open throughout the night to accommodate fans who wish to purchase a ticket for the April 11-12 Bojangles' Southern 500 race weekend, which is just days away. Fans need to use the Gate 3 entrance to the track off of Highway 151. The parking lot is located next to the track's administration building and certain sections of the Colvin Grandstands on the backstretch will be open for public viewing. Times of the test are subject to change. Tickets to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Bojangles' Southern 500 on Saturday, April 12 and Nationwide Series VFW Sport Clips Help A Hero 200 on Friday, April 11 are now on sale, visit www.DarlingtonRaceway.com or call 866-459-7223 for more information.(Darlington Raceway)(4-1-2014)
NASCAR team tests at Kennedy Space Center: When it comes to testing, many NASCAR teams head to places such as Road America, Nashville, or a variety of other racing facilities sprinkled across the country. Yet for one team, they took their test session to a whole new level -- space. On March 11, an unidentified NASCAR team tested the 3.2-mile Shuttle Landing Facility runway at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. According to the NASA release, on the same day, the space agency tested the experimental Morpheus lander, Starfighters Aerospace tested "modified jet fighters through their afterburner evaluations, and medical evacuation helicopters conducting safety checks and procedure tests." The uniqueness of the March 11 test day was that the runway was used by a multitude of people for a variety of reasons. Prior to March 11, the facility made famous by rocket launches and space shuttle landings was used by only one group at a time. While this particular test was the first to mention a NASCAR team, the Kennedy Space Center's Shuttle Landing Facility has hosted "car tests" in the past. It is unclear whether any of these previous tests were conducted by NASCAR teams or not, and attempts to contact NASA were not returned at time of publication. In the past, teams have used large facilities such as the Toyota's North America Proving Grounds in Arizona for test purposes such as these.(FoxSports)(3-30-2014)
Teams test intermediate track rules package at Las Vegas: Forty-eight drivers from the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series turned laps at Las Vegas Motor Speedway Thursday to further build upon the 2014 intermediate-track rules package that was formalized late last year. Serving as the first official NASCAR test with the new 2014 rules package in place, the four-hour session allowed teams to prepare for Sunday's Kobalt 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway - the series' first visit to a 1.5-mile track in 2014 - and beyond.
Included in the new intermediate track rules package are various physical changes to the car that were determined after much collaboration between NASCAR, the teams and the manufacturers. Based in part on two lengthy test sessions at Charlotte Motor Speedway in October and December, NASCAR implemented chassis and aerodynamic adjustments into the setup specifications to encourage more green-flag passing and side-by-side racing. Changes to the package include statically setting the race car ride height, a square leading edge on the splitter, side skirt and rear fascia adjustments and an eight-inch rear spoiler. A 43-inch by 13-inch radiator pan rounded out changes for 2014.(NASCAR). See the speeds, laps run, and 10-lap averages from the test on the Las Vegas test speeds page.(3-7-2014)
Drivers test at Bristol: According to MRN's Dustin Long, drivers #13-Casey Mears, #32-Travis Kvapil, and #95-Michael McDowell tested at Bristol Motor Speedway on Tuesday. What as planned as a two day test was condensed down to one day because of weather.(2-26-2014)
Team Penske tests at Nashville: Team Penske and both #2-Brad Keselowski and #22-Joey Logano tested on Tuesday at Nashville Superspeedway.(Team Penske)(2-19-2014)
Three drivers at test Talladega Superspeedway UPDATE: With the Aaron's Dream Weekend set for May 2-4 at Talladega Superspeedway, three drivers - led by #21-Trevor Bayne of the famed the Wood Brothers Racing Team - took to the high banks of NASCAR's Most Competitive Track Wednesday for a test session in hopes of gathering information to help their efforts upon their return. Bayne was joined by Tommy Baldwin Racing drivers #36-Reed Sorenson and #7-Michael Annett. Veteran crew chief Todd Parrott, who will head Sorenson's effort, was also on hand after taking over the reins earlier this year. Bayne, behind the wheel of the iconic #21 Ford, paced the trio with an unofficial speed of 191.138 mph. NASCAR returns to Talladega Superspeedway in 2014 with the Aaron's Dream Weekend, which is set for May 2-4. The NASCAR Nationwide Series and ARCA Racing Series will take to the track on Saturday, May 3 while NASCAR's Sprint Cup Series machines take the green flag on Sunday, May 4.(TSS)(2-6-2014)
UPDATE: Trevor Bayne, driver of the #21 Wood Brothers Ford completed a two-day test on Thursday at Talladega Superspeedway in preparation for the May 2-4 Aaron's Dream Weekend. "We have been able to learn a lot over the last two days and feel good with our restrictor plate program," said Bayne, the 2011 Daytona 500 Champion. "It's always good coming to Talladega." The famed Wood Brothers team has five triumphs at Talladega with the likes of David Pearson, Donnie Allison and Neil Bonnett. Bayne is hoping to give the legendary team its sixth win in the Aaron's 499 on Sunday, May 4.(TSS)(2-7-2014)
Teams test at Nashville: many drivers tested at Nashville Superspeedway for one or two days this week: #5-Kasey Kahne, #13-Casey Mears, #16-Greg Biffle, #17-Ricky Stenhouse Jr., #21-Trevor Bayne, #22-Joey Logano, #27-Paul Menard, #31-Ryan Newman, #43-Aric Almirola, #66-Jeff Burton, #83-Ryan Truex, #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr., #99-Carl Edwards.(driver / team twitter accounts)(1-31-2014)
UPDATE: Planned one- and two-day tests for several NASCAR Sprint Cup teams at Nashville Superspeedway may be brought to an early end Saturday - which also may prompt those teams to make a hasty exit from Music City. The reason is quick-approaching bad weather. The National Weather Service issued a winter weather alert early Saturday calling for rain in the afternoon turning to snow and possibly sleet in the evening. Estimates of snowfall range from a half-inch to as much as three inches in surrounding areas, with potentially a half-inch of ice accumulation, as well. Among teams that tested at Nashville the last day or two, with some having been expected to stick around for Saturday included Hendrick Motorsports (#5-Kasey Kahne and #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr.), Roush Fenway Racing (#16-Greg Biffle, #17-Ricky Stenhouse Jr., #99-Carl Edwards, Trevor Bayne), Richard Childress Racing (#31-Ryan Newman, #27-Paul Menard), Richard Petty Motorsports (#43-Aric Almirola), Michael Waltrip Racing (#66-Jeff Burton), Team Penske (#22-Joey Logano), Germain Racing (#13-Casey Mears) and BK Racing (#83-Ryan Truex).(NBC Sports)(2-2-2014)
Dillon fastest in Sprint Cup testing at Daytona: Austin Dillon knows there will be pressure racing the #3 car made famous by the late Dale Earnhardt. Today, he just raised the stakes with his first test in that car at Daytona International Speedway. The Richard Childress Racing driver planted the historic #3 atop the speed charts on the first and only day of NASCAR Sprint Cup Series testing at the World Center of Racing. His 195.109 mph led all drivers in single-car runs during this tune-up for the 56th running of the Daytona 500.
"I'm honored to be in the 3," said Dillon, who is driving a number that Dale Earnhardt drove to victory 24 times at Daytona. The defending NASCAR Nationwide Series will be a top contender for NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Sunoco Rookie of the Year honors in 2014. "This is special and walking into this [NASCAR Sprint] Cup garage this weekend is pretty cool. There are so many heroes in this garage for me, and just being in this garage is going to be pressure."
A rainout Thursday raised the pressure on all drivers Friday, as teams made the most of a testing session that was reduced to a single 8-hour window. Two of the sport's biggest stars turned their first Daytona laps with new teams, including past Daytona 500 winners Kevin Harvick and Ryan Newman. Harvick now drives the #4 Chevrolet for Stewart-Haas Racing, while Newman is behind the wheel of the #31 Chevrolet for Richard Childress Racing.
Forty-one drivers turned laps in Gen-6 Chevrolets, Fords and Toyotas, which are entering their second year of NASCAR Sprint Cup Series competition. Those cars featured a new 4.5-inch spoiler, designed to add more rear downforce for stability. Results were positive. Thirty-three cars topped 190 mph and the new aero package performed well in traffic, which was tested in the draft during the final hour of testing.(NASCAR)
The top 5 speeds:
#3-Austin Dillon 195.109
#33-Brian Scott 194.582
#27-Matt Crafton 194.342
#43-Aric Almirola 193.828
#42-Kyle Larson 193.411
See fastest speeds and laps run on the Preseason Thunder Speeds (pdf).(1-10-2014)
Preseason Thunder Rolls Into Daytona: All three NASCAR national series will test at Daytona International Speedway from Thursday, Jan. 9 to Tuesday, Jan. 14. FOX Sports 1 will broadcast Preseason Thunder testing live on Thursday and Friday from 1:00-5:00 pm/et, and on Saturday, from 3:00-7:00 pm/et (same day delay). The test sessions are scheduled to run each day from 9:00 am -12:00noon/et and 1:00-5:00 pm/et.
Fan Fest The Preseason Thunder Fan Fests are scheduled for Thursday, Jan. 9, for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and Saturday, Jan. 11, for the NASCAR Nationwide Series. Drivers will participate in the Fan Fest, scheduled from 5:30 - 9:30pm/et both nights. Tickets are available at the gate and are $25 per person for Thursday, and $10 for Saturday. Kids 12 & under are free throughout testing.(DIS)
Teams/Drivers scheduled to test:
#2-Brad Keselowski & Rusty Wallace
#14-Mark Martin (subbing for Tony Stewart)
#17-Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
#32-Reed Sorenson (for Terry Labonte)
#52-Bobby Labonte (2nd Phoenix Racing car)
#88-Dale Earnhardt Jr.
#92-Brian Keselowski (but didn't test)
Teams/Drivers not scheduled to test:
#35-Front Row Motorsports
#78-Martin Truex Jr.
DAY 1 of testing was canceled due to rain. On-track testing on Friday will run through the lunch break.(1-9-2014)
Some Daytona Testing to be Televised: the 2014 version of NASCAR cars and trucks take to the track at Daytona for preseason test sessions, with FOX Sports 1 providing 12 hours of coverage over three days from Jan. 9-11. The NASCAR on FOX team of Darrell Waltrip, Larry McReynolds and Mike Joy call the action while NASCAR Sprint Cup Series cars are on the track Jan. 9-10 (1:00 pm/et to 5:00 pm/et, Live), with Bob Dillner and Matt Yocum reporting from the pits and Jeff Hammond reporting from the garage. Setting up camp in the garage area, host Rick Allen and analyst Hermie Sadler offer a location for drivers, crew chiefs and other personalities to talk over the day's storylines. NASCAR Nationwide Series tests air on FOX Sports 1 from 3:00pm/et to 7:00pm/et on Saturday, Jan. 11, with Allen, Hammond and Phil Parsons in the booth, and Sadler, Dillner and Ray Dunlap reporting from the pits.(FOX)(1-1-2014)
Different drivers testing for BK Racing at Daytona UPDATE: Alex Bowman, who subbed for David Reutimann in the #83 Toyota during the Charlotte Motor Speedway test in December, will continue in that role at Daytona International Speedway this coming week. Ryan Truex will shake down the #93 Toyota. Truex remains under contract with Richard Petty Motorsports but was given permission to test with BK Racing. "We're going to test those two to keep our options open," said Ron Devine, BKR team owner. On Sunday, Devine said both he and the team were impressed by Bowman's performance at the Charlotte test. He added BKR's driver lineup "is not set yet for 2014." Given the uncertainty surrounding his current drivers, that's understandable. Travis Kvapil, who competed in the #93 Toyota last year, has a pending court date Jan. 17 following charges of misdemeanor assault on Oct. 8. The case was continued from Nov. 19. Reutimann struggled to finish 33rd in the points standings last year. While Dale Ferguson will continue as the crew chief for the #93 team, Dave Winston [not Martin] will replace Doug Richert on the #83 squad. However, Devine says Richert will remain with the organization.(Fox Sports)(1-6-2014)
UPDATE: After completing a full season with BK Racing in 2013, the decision has been mutually made to part ways between driver David Reutimann and BK Racing effective immediately. Due to the current uncertainty of the team's 2014 driver lineup, driver David Reutimann has decided not to pursue a seat with BK Racing for 2014. No official driver lineup for the upcoming season is currently available at this time.(BK Racing), Reutimann drove the #83 Burger King Toyota in 2013 for BK Racing.(1-6-2014)
Daytona International Speedway
Daytona Beach, FL
Congratulations 2015 Champ Kyle Busch
(Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)