For the first time in NASCAR history, a stock race raced on the snow and ice. The test took place in Europe instead of the United States, but the end result was a fascinating video that hinted at future changes.
EuroNASCAR posted a video on Thursday that showed the first-ever foray onto an ice track. The 400-horsepower stock car raced around the Val Thorens track in a test that actually took place on March 26. NASCAR Whelen Euro Series organizer Team FJ put on the event featuring the EuroNASCAR car and fitted it with a set of studded tires for added traction.
📣 A world’s first! #NASCAR on ice 🏔️ 🌨️ ❄️
— EuroNASCAR (@EuroNASCAR) April 15, 2021
Despite being on a foreign surface, the No. 50 Chevrolet Camaro still successfully navigated the ice track while sliding around corners and throwing snow into the air. According to NASCAR, the stock car posted faster lap times than the specifically designed rear-wheel-drive cars that have frequented this French track. The Chevrolet also came close to all-wheel-drive ice prototypes lap times.
The stock car impressed with its balance in the corners
NASCAR Whelen Euro Series President and CEO Jerome Galpin served as the wheelman for the day at the ice track. He spoke glowingly about the stock car after the test laps, raving about how the versatile car would create new opportunities for upcoming seasons.
“This test will definitely open up new horizons and spark new ideas for the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series,” Galpin said, per EuroNASCAR. “We have to see what’s the next step but for sure this was a very special day. It doesn’t matter the surface you drive on, the shape of the track or the kind of driver you are: the Pure Racing character of the EuroNASCAR car is contagious and you will not want to stop driving it!”
The Euro Series stock car has visited several tracks, both during the season and on testing days. It has raced around Brands Hatch Circuit, Hockenheimring, and Circuit Zolder in Europe. The stock car has also taken part in the Goodwood Festival of Speed Hillclimb and events at the Daytona International Speedway Road Course. Now fans and drivers alike have questions about whether the series will add an ice race to the schedule.
NASCAR recently tested its drivers on dirt
The trip to the ice track in France was not the only way in which NASCAR has tested its stock cars on a different surface. Racing’s sanctioning body recently held two races at a dirt-covered Bristol Motor Speedway. The Truck Series drivers completed 150 laps during the Pinty’s Truck Race on Dirt after dealing with multiple weather-related issues. Martin Truex Jr. led 105 of the laps and won his first Truck Series event.
Shortly after the Truck Series race, the Cup Series drivers took part in the first dirt race in 50 years. They completed 253 laps during the Food City Dirt Race. Kevin Harvick, Bubba Wallace, Denny Hamlin, and Kyle Busch were among those making adjustments throughout the race while trying to find success on a foreign track surface. Ultimately, Joey Logano took the checkered flag in a crash-filled race while eight other drivers headed to the garage early.
The NASCAR season will now continue with trips to both familiar and new tracks. Sunday’s race at Richmond Raceway will continue a long stretch of short track events, but the trip to Circuit of the Americas on May 23 will mark the first time that the Cup Series has raced on the unique road course.
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