NASCAR will conduct a test session at Martinsville Speedway April 1 to see if rain tires can be used in future events on short tracks.
If the test session is successful, competition officials could begin using this tire on short, flatter ovals like Phoenix Raceway and New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
“I think the overall goal is anything we can do to speed up the drying process, regardless of the technology, to allow us to get back to racing more quickly is a benefit to the fans,” Steve O’Donnell, NASCAR executive VP and chief racing development officer, said. “We’re always trying to innovate, and you saw that with what we’ve done around the track-drying system and that’s worked out well. We’ve always looked at what’s the next iteration. If you’ve looked at what the teams have been able to do with more road racing coming into the fold, the idea of short tracks and could we work with Goodyear to find a tire that would allow us to get back to racing sooner under wet-weather conditions.”
The Cup Series first use of rain tires came at the Charlotte Motor Speedway ROVAL last October.
Officials are currently testing the Next Gen car at the .526-mile track, with Ford, Chevrolet and Toyota all represented at once.
All three series are off this week. The Xfinity and Cup series will head to Martinsville on April 9-10.