NASCAR Makes Chassis Changes After Larson-Preece Wreck

Getty Kyle Larson drives the No. 5 Chevrolet Camaro at Talladega Superspeedway.

Prior to the Coca-Cola 600, NASCAR announced chassis changes for the Next Gen car. This comes as a result of a crash at Talladega Superspeedway involving Ryan Preece and Kyle Larson.

According to a press release from NASCAR, teams received a memo that outlined the changes to the Next Gen chassis. The biggest is that six right-side bar gussets may be added to the front and back of the passenger door area. One important detail to note is that NASCAR will provide these gussets to the teams at no cost to them.

NASCAR MediaNASCAR has made updates to the Next Gen chassis.

The other update is that the front clip V-brace must be removed from the assembly. This should reduce the stiffness of the front clip. The goal is to limit intrusion into the cockpit area.

When Preece t-boned Larson at Talladega Superspeedway, the hit pushed the door bar into the cockpit area. The hit also destroyed the metal plate that acts as a fire barrier on the passenger side door. This side does not have the structural steel plate over the door tubing like on the driver’s side.

NASCAR Could Announce More Updates

GettyCup Series drivers race at Talladega Superspeedway.

The announcement on May 24 only focuses on the first updates to the chassis following the violent crash at Talladega Superspeedway. There could be more on the way based on some upcoming tests.

NASCAR also announced that there are additional updates under consideration. There are crash tests taking place this week at a facility in Ohio. Any further changes will happen based on the outcome of these tests.

NASCAR has continued to pursue safer racing throughout the Next Gen era. The sanctioning body has conducted countless inspections and made multiple changes in an effort to reduce the possibility of injuries.

These continued crash tests and chassis updates only further highlight this push toward a safer future for the competitors, especially at the superspeedways where incidents are inevitable.

Both Drivers Avoided Injuries at Talladega Superspeedway

GettyRyan Preece prepares for a race at Talladega Superspeedway.

When Larson and Preece wrecked at the Alabama track, there were immediate concerns about injuries. They were able to exit the infield care center after undergoing evaluation, but would there be any lingering effects?

Weeks later, people in the industry know the answer. Both drivers avoided injuries, and they were able to continue racing for Hendrick Motorsports and Stewart-Haas Racing, respectively.

“I feel fine. Obviously, when you wreck, you’re going to be a little sore,” Preece told media members after the trip to Talladega Superspeedway. “I felt fine when I got out of the race car, Monday I was a little sore but I was still able to do my workouts and everything I wanted to do, and I woke up today and felt fine.”

Preece also noted during the media session that he had plans to go to the NASCAR R&D Center so that he could provide more details about the incident. He would explain how he felt during the crash and in the immediate aftermath.

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