Ryan Blaney claims the new Next-Gen car splitter has made a ‘massive difference in driving’ at the Phoenix test

Ryan Blaney was one of six drivers to text the Next-Gen cars at Phoenix.


Ryan Blaney claims the new Next-Gen car splitter has made a ‘massive difference in driving’ at the Phoenix test

Ryan Blaney (Via IMAGO)

The first post-season Next-Gen car test was hosted by the Phoenix Raceway and according to the reigning Cup champion, some changes introduced to the cars have made massive differences. Ryan Blaney has pointed out that the seventh-generation car offers an entirely different driving experience with the new splitter.

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Alongside the 2023 Cup champion, RFK Racing’s Chris Buescher, Legacy Motor Club’s Erik Jones, Joe Gibbs Racing’s Christopher Bell, Hendrick Motorsports’ Kyle Larson, and Spire Motorsports’ Corey LaJoie were the drivers selected for the post-season testing. The test had two different sessions with drivers running first with the set-ups from the season finale and later with the new spoiler.

Blaney after the test, while talking to the media, pointed out that when they ran with the original set-up in the first hours there wasn’t anything but as soon as the new splitter was used he witnessed a massive difference in the car drives. He immediately understood the difference once the new splitter took off a lot of downforce.

Yeah, big difference. We unloaded exactly how we were here in fall. You know, with this car, (we) ran a couple hours on it. And the different splitter? Big difference. Massive with the way it drives. I mean, so much downforce taken off of it. It was big. First laps I had I was like 'man this thing drives way different'.
Blaney said, as reported by kickinthetires.net.

Kyle Larson agrees with Ryan Blaney

2021 NASCAR Cup Series champion Kyle Larson was one of two Chevy representatives at the testing and he was equally impressed with the new changes. But unlike the champion, he didn’t see a massive difference.

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Kyle Larson and Chase Elliott (Via IMAGO)
Kyle Larson and Chase Elliott (Via IMAGO)
I’m not really into the technical side of it. I’m just out there driving and not necessarily putting two and two together, but nothing seems way different to me. Ride quality and stuff changed with the different splitter, but I don’t know how it races any differently in traffic or anything like that.

The new testing is vital for NASCAR to fix the short-track racing issues. If they are able to find a suitable solution to issues with the passing at the track. The words from the test drivers offer a glimpse of hope, but there are a lot of issues that still need to be sorted out before the start of the 2024 season.

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