FOX Sports Exclusive
NTM Q&A, Part II: France on the Car of Tomorrow, safety and the Busch Series
Share This Story
Changing of the guardJohn Roberts: Hey Brian, what about the changing of the guard (with Rusty Wallace and Ricky Rudd leaving full-time rides) and the iron-man streak that is just absolutely incredible. For someone that has grown up around this thing, what about those guys leaving this sport now? Brian France: Well, you know, it's bittersweet because those are the guys who, for a long time, have won races and carried the sport. Your brother has been outstanding for a long time. It certainly... Mark Martin and Ricky Rudd, hasn't missed a race in 700-plus. You don't look at it as a race without those guys so it'll feel a little bit different, but that's part of life and it's part of the things that move on. And the new talent that's coming in is pretty incredible when you think about the guys that are moving up, the guys that are already (there) like Jimmie Johnson only in his third or fourth year. Dominant drivers early on now. Carl Edwards, my goodness, a rookie might have a shot at this thing today. Kenny Wallace: He's the Busch Series rookie of the year, Brian. Brian France: I know. I know. He's awful talented.
Car of TomorrowJimmy Spencer: That needs to be changed, but anyway. Brian, you know with the demand on the dates and the fans. Our sport has just grown in leaps and bounds. You hear a lot of this non-competition. The competition isn't as good as it needs to be. So NASCAR's implementing a new car of the future (Car of Tomorrow). How's that coming along? Brian France: The car of the future is coming along really well. There are a couple things. No. 1, it has some big safety emphasis on it. It's a bigger car. We've moved the driver over more to the middle of the vehicle. We've got new crush zones, new things from a safety standpoint that are going to be very beneficial. But from action on the track, I think when it's all said and done, we're going to love it because back will come the slingshot pass. The whole aero-dependency issue that no one really likes, we're going to take a big bite out of that. Much more like the truck-style racing than it is anything else. I don't have to tell anybody who watches that division how fun and exciting it is. It'll be some drivers that have to get used to it and adjust, but a lot of the guys who have tested that car are liking it. They like how it feels. It's on the track now in testing. We should have it on hopefully some time next year for competitive action and then in '07, you'll see a big rollout.
Chase for the Nextel Cup photos|