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Unlike in years past, where the offseason meant nearly three full months of driver downtime and stock car silence, NASCAR's drivers and race teams have barely had time to rest since the end of the 2021 season. The offseason leading into 2022 has seen a steady stream of track time as NASCAR prepares to launch its Next Gen Cup car, with a Winter regimen of testing coming to a close just before the Next Gen car's very first race.

NASCAR teams spent Tuesday and Wednesday taking part in a two-day test session at Phoenix Raceway, which marked the last organizational test session of the Next Gen car before its debut in next week's Busch Light Clash at the Los Angeles Coliseum. With the rules package for the Next Gen car already settled and major tests at both Charlotte Motor Speedway and Daytona International Speedway out of the way, Phoenix's test session was described as a last "sanity check" for NASCAR officials while drivers continued the process of grappling with the unknowns of the car.

"We may have some general ideas, but there's nothing concrete yet until we go out there and race," Joey Logano said in a report by Terrin Waack of NASCAR.com. "So, when you say comfortable, I'm far from comfortable. There's nothing I really know for certain is coming my way."

Drivers took advantage of the opportunity to push the Next Gen car to its limits, as was evidenced by some of the on-track action in testing: Kyle Busch self-spun on one occasion, and Chase Elliott looped his car around on two. While neither driver hit anything, rookie Todd Gilliland was not so fortunate, as he backed his Front Row Motorsports Ford into the Turn 2 wall after a spin.

Defending Cup Champion Kyle Larson was fastest in Tuesday's session, posting a time of 27.329 (131.728 MPH) before being outpaced in Wednesday's session by Ryan Blaney (27.292, 131.907 MPH). The Ford teams all flexed their strength in Wednesday's session, as four of the top five fastest cars came out of the Blue Oval ranks.

With the trials of offseason testing now complete, NASCAR competition officials will now see their creation exit the laboratory to make its debut in competition. Although NASCAR felt that Next Gen testing concluded with matters of car and driver in a good spot, there was an admission that the sanctioning body would not know for sure about how the Next Gen car holds up until it gets truly put through the rigors of racing.

"Right now, all indications are pretty good," NASCAR SVP of Racing Innovation John Probst said. "Experience tells us not to get too happy, so we'll just be cautiously optimistic, how about that?"

The Next Gen car will make its debut on Feb. 6 with the Clash at the Coliseum, which will be followed by a one-week break before the 2022 season officially begins with Speedweeks and the 64th running of the Daytona 500.