This Is Not a Test
Posted on: November 14, 2008 4:46 pm
Edited on: November 14, 2008 4:46 pm
NASCAR's decision to ban all testing for 2009 is a big step in the right direction. Now that Sprint Cup teams are forbidden to conduct tests at any NASCAR-sanctioned track next year, most teams will save between $3-$5 million, a hefty amount given the economic hardships being felt throughout the garage area. But the sanctioning body has to take it further and not simply mandate that teams aren't allowed to test. NASCAR has to enforce the rule. The way the new policy reads, teams would be banned from using any sanctioned facility but allowed to utilize tracks outside the NASCAR family. That means short tracks like New Smyrna Speedway in Florida or Madison International in Wisconsin are fair game as are road courses in Virginia or Ohio. Rockingham Speedway, just outside the NASCAR hub in Charlotte, could now be a gold mine as a testing destination with the track offering both the one-mile superspeedway that used to be part of the Sprint Cup schedule and an adjacent short track, built specifically for legends, go-karts and of course testing. NASCAR should penalize any team caught testing anywhere by sitting out the next week's race. That would ensure all the teams are on an equal playing field. And with the possibility of being parked for a real race weekend the penalty, you can be sure no team would risk the move. My gut tells me the super teams of Hendrick, Roush, RCR and JGR will somehow find a way around things but I applaud NASCAR for taking a positive step to reign in the escalating costs of Sprint Cup racing.