Quotes from ESPN NASCAR Analysts on Rear Spoiler at Brickyard 400
ESPN NASCAR analysts Dale Jarrett, Rusty Wallace and Ray Evernham, all former NASCAR champions, commented today at Indianapolis Motor Speedway about the difference rear spoilers will make on NASCAR Sprint Cup Series cars during Sunday’s Brickyard 400. The race will mark the first time the series has raced at IMS since spoilers replaced rear wings on the car earlier this year. ESPN will televise the race live at 1 p.m.
DALE JARRETT (1999 NASCAR Sprint Cup champion, two-time Brickyard 400 winner): “It’s going to make it a better-looking race for sure. I believe that it’s going to make it a better race. The cars will stay closer on the straightaways and there’s the opportunity to make someone loose going into the corner, so we’re going to see more opportunities to pass. I think we’re going to see better racing here. I’m not trying to kid anyone and say they’re going to run side-by-side around here for 160 laps. The lack of banking here puts you in that position. But you’re going to see a lot more opportunity for guys to make passes. That’s what racing is all about. It’s about passing the guy in front of you. We’ve had so many great races over the years, sometimes our expectations get a little bit too high. This is a difficult place for a driver and even more difficult to pass. I think the spoiler gives an opportunity to see much more exciting racing and passing happening throughout the day on Sunday.”
RUSTY WALLACE (1989 NASCAR Sprint Cup champion, three-time Brickyard 400 runner-up): “I think something different is definitely going to happen. The racing is going to look good, but because of the rear spoiler I’m hoping that it creates so much draft and pokes such a big hole in the air compared to the wing that I think we might have an opportunity to see some passes deep in both straightaways. That’s what I’m hoping we’ll see. I don’t think it’s going to make the car stick any better. I think you’re going to see more passing in the straightaways. People ask me a lot what I thought about the wing and the spoiler. I never was a fan of that wing… it just didn’t look right and the cars look right now. I hear there may be some more changes coming for the front of the car that will make them look better yet. I’m excited about what NASCAR’s doing, I think it was the right move to make a change. And, I think with the new Goodyear tire it’s been really good and with the new spoiler we’ll see some of the best racing we’ve seen in a long time here at Indy.”
RAY EVERNHAM (three-time NASCAR Sprint Cup champion crew chief, winner of inaugural Brickyard 400 with Jeff Gordon): “It’s just different, a different kind of aerodynamic than the wing was. It will probably aggravate the aero push a little bit, but it will also improve the ability of the guy behind to slingshot. It blows a bigger hole in the air, makes a little bit dirtier air. It’s not really better or worse, just different and the downforce creates a different result. (Will it make for a better race?) It could cause the guys to set up the cars a little differently. They’re going to find out in practice that the air is a little dirtier and they’ll have to make changes to the front of the car. You might get to see a guy a little looser out front than the guy behind him and you might see a little of that game where the guy behind loosens the guy in front a little bit.”
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ESPN produces comprehensive, multi-platform coverage featuring telecasts of the final 17 NASCAR Sprint Cup races, including the 10-race “Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. Additionally, ESPN2 is the home of the NASCAR Nationwide Series all season. All television programming is produced in high definition. ESPN’s NASCAR coverage extends to ESPN.com, SportsCenter, ESPN the Magazine, ESPN Classic, ESPNEWS, ESPN Deportes, ESPN Radio and ESPN International, among other ESPN platforms. ESPN aired 262 NASCAR Cup Races over a 20-year period starting in 1981 and returned to NASCAR coverage in 2007. The network’s award-winning, live flag-to-flag coverage on ESPN has been honored with 19 Sports Emmy Awards, as well as many industry honors. It is widely credited for helping to popularize the sport nationwide.