Friesen suggests a harder tire so fans get to a see a more traditional dirt race
The NASCAR Next Gen car has been run on 2-mile, 1.5-mile, 1-mile, 0.5-mile and 0.25-mile tracks. However, the car hasn’t been tested on the dirt.
That’s one of the final stages of testing ahead of it’s 2022 debut. Wythe Raceway is a high banked half-mile dirt track in Rural Retreat, VA. The track will welcome the Next Gen machine.
Stewart Friesen has six years of NASCAR Truck Series experience. He’s run one Cup race, the Bristol Dirt Race last year. However, NASCAR has selected him to participate in the NASCAR Cup Series test.
Friesen regularly competes in Big-Block Modifieds and he’s recently began running a super late model as well.
Stewart Friesen to run dirt test for NASCAR Next Gen car
“They caught me be surprise when NASCAR called and told me they were looking for me to run that test,” Stewart Friesen told Bob Pockrass.
“We’re still going to try to get back to Bristol in a Cup car, however that may shake out. For them to ask me to do it, was awesome.”
“It’s primarily a tire test. They’ll have a bunch of different compounds, we’ll run through some stuff. They’ll look at temps and wear.”
“Wytheville, that surface is a red clay surface, similar to what goes on Bristol. The abrasiveness of the clay will be similar.”
Friesen ran his first NASCAR race in 2016 at Eldora Speedway. His first career win came at Eldora Speedway in 2019.
Harder tire suggested
“I made one suggestion that the cars and trucks would race better on a harder tire. Similar to what we used at Eldora.”
“It would be less demand on the race track. A harder tire tends to polish up a dirt track more. So, it gets more of a bead on the wall, around the top. And you search for the moisture on the bottom.”
“Rather than just lay rubber, locked down, single file on the bottom. Which is kinda where Bristol went after so many laps.”
“We’d pit, get tires and you could race 10-15 laps. Then, at the ends of the segments, it kinda just locked down on the bottom. A harder tire will keep the track a little more polished up and let fans see a dirt race that they like to see, with cars beating the right rear off the fence and guys catfishing on the bottom.”
Friesen concluded, “To widen the track out and not be so demanding on the track. Not break it apart and make big holes and the dust that we saw.”
Friesen is a regular dirt racing competitor. In 2020, Friesen won the Short Track Super Series North and South Championships.