NASCAR takes to Daytona for January testing

The 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season may be more than a month-and-a-half away, but fans will get an opportunity tofinally get back to seeing some on-track action later this month in the form of Preseason Thunder testing at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway. According to a recent press release from the track, SPEED will be providing live coverage all three days of the testing that runs from Jan. 10 to Jan. 12.

According to the press release, morning sessions all three days will be streamed live on SPEED.com, while all afternoon sessions will receive live television coverage on SPEED Channel. Morning sessions each day are scheduled for 9 a.m. to noon ET, while afternoon sessions are scheduled for 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. ET and 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. ET, weather permitting.

According to former driver and current NASCAR on FOX analyst Darrell Waltrip, one thing NASCAR will be keeping its eye on during January testing at Daytona will be the equality, or lack thereof, between manufacturers with the new 2013 race cars.

“With the new rules, there are no guarantees these cars will be equal,” Waltrip said. “They’ve been tested in the wind tunnel, and they’ve been aerodynamically matched up the best they can. But there is no guarantee these cars will all be equal. When you look at the variances in the bodies this year compared to the past, one manufacturer could wind up with a huge advantage at Daytona, and that’s something NASCAR will be keeping an eye on at the test.”

Cars in 2013 will vary from manufacturer to manufacturer more than in recent years past, as NASCAR has aimed to give cars more manufacturer identity with the new car. And aerodynamics play a huge role in performance in restrictor plate racing atDaytona and Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway.

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Tags: Daytona International Speedway NASCAR Preseason Thunder