The 2017 NASCAR season begins this weekend—a perfect time to check out the changes to the Monster Energy Cup Series chassis this year, mainly in the interest of driver safety. Here’s the lowdown.
As we never stop saying here at Mac’s Motor City Garage, when we find sound, clear technical features we like to share them. This one comes comes courtesy of NASCAR, with Jonathan Merryman and Vice President of Innovation and Racing Devlopment Gene Stefanyshyn walking us through the NASCAR chassis for 2017. The video is only two minutes long—ideal internet length—but it’s a great close-up look at the current NASCAR chassis with tons of detail, and it’s packed with info on the new features:
+ There’s a new steering column mount designed to keep the assembly from intruding on the driver in a frontal impact.
+ Additional panels have been added all around front, rear, and left side of the driver’s cell for greater protection in front and side impacts.
+ Energy-absorbing foam material has been added to the driver’s footbox to better manage the impact energy in front-end collisions.
+ The driver roof hatch, previously voluntary for Xfinity and Monster Energy Cup Series cars, will now be mandatory at the restrictor-plate superspeedway venues in Daytona and Talladega.
Of course, you may probably never drive a NASCAR racer in competition yourself, but it’s still good to know how your favorite drivers are being protected out there on the track. And there are some good ideas for racing safety here no matter what series you may race in. Video below.