It was an eventful, yet fun couple of days for William Byron as he got his shot at testing out NASCAR’s latest prototype for their upcoming NextGen race car at the Auto Club Speedway on Monday and Tuesday.
— NASCAR (@NASCAR) March 2, 2020
On Monday, Byron lost control of the car on his opening run of the test, but luckily didn’t hit anything.
The rest of Monday and Tuesday was a fun learning session on the ins and outs of the new car, and according to Byron things got much more fun the further into the test he got.
“I’ve been happy with it, especially as we’ve been adjusting it more and tailoring it to this track – this is the biggest track it’s been on so far,” Byron said in a NASCAR.com report. “As soon as it started to go for us, I thought the steering felt better and the car felt more stable. It’s been fun the more laps I’ve been able to run.”
Byron’s second day of testing was no incident free, either.
On his final run of the day, which was scheduled to be a 25-lap tire run, Byron spun and scraped the inside wall, which ended his day prematurely. However, the contact with the wall did not cause catastrophic damage to the NextGen P3.
“We were probably six or seven laps into a 25-lap tire run. I had been a little free for a couple of corners, but nothing major,” Byron explained in the NASCAR.com report. “That time, I just got loose and figured I’d be able to save it but wasn’t able to. It just came all the way around. I had a number of similar moments in the race Sunday and was able to drive out of it. That’s what caught me off guard the most. It’s part of testing though, learning where the line is with what the car can do.”
NASCAR’s Steve O’Donnell confirmed that the damage sustained to the NextGen car occurred on the inside wall of the backstretch, but that the car is fixable.
Hit inside of backstretch wall midway thru day 2 of testing. Able to collect what we needed prior to incident and have some good data to review on the car from accident. @WilliamByron is ok, car will be ok…appreciate @RCRracing & @TeamHendrick making @ACSupdates test happen https://t.co/RY09UuXl9q
— Steve O'Donnell (@odsteve) March 3, 2020
Byron is the fourth driver who has had a chance to drive behind the wheel of one of NASCAR’s NextGen prototypes, that have been built by Richard Childress Racing.
Other drivers who have had a crack at it include: Austin Dillon, Joey Logano and Erik Jones.
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