NASCAR has released its 2018 rules package, to be used beginning at Daytona in February. Here are the pros and cons to the changes, or lack thereof.
First off, the splitter and cooling systems will now be provided by NASCAR, so teams won’t have to spend money on research and development of those parts. Only one rear gear will be provided as well. Teams will be limited to 13 engines for the 2018 seasons’ 36 races, which will also cut costs. These changes look to be the starting point for NASCAR to make the sport less expensive to participate in, assisting smaller teams and hopefully ushering new teams into NASCAR. The splitter change may also push Toyota back closer to Ford and Chevy, since that seems to be a significant factor in their success. The cons, though, far outweigh the pros.
NASCAR has done nothing to improve the racing. For the first time in a few years, no downforce was taken away, nor was any side force. This paints the picture that NASCAR is happy with the racing, when the fans clearly aren’t. Side force needs to be removed in order to improve the racing, but their inaction is hurting them. NASCAR fans like to have it both ways in terms of change, with constant complaints in reaction to changes and lack thereof. The racing is unlikely to be better than this season, which will hurt NASCAR as a whole.