Eight NASCAR drivers converged on Phoenix International Raceway this week to work with NASCAR and Goodyear to test tires and the new 2013 car scheduled to debut next season.
Drivers Brad Keselowski, Tony Stewart, Denny Hamlin, Carl Edwards, Kurt Busch, Jamie McMurray, Paul Menard and Brendan Gaughan were on the track at PIR on Tuesday and Wednesday, participating in a Goodyear tire test for the next-generation cars.
During his media session at PIR, Keselowski, the current NASCAR Chase points leader discussed the importance of performing well in the November 11 AdvoCare 500 Sprint Cup Series race at Phoenix International Raceway.
“It’s one of those championship battles that’s shaping up to go all the way down to the wire at Homestead, so with Phoenix being the race before that it’s really going to be a pivotal week as far as positioning for the last race,” said Keselowski. “We certainly want to go to Homestead with an advantage if possible, so running well here is going to be extremely important.”
NASCAR Vice President of Competition, Robin Pemberton noted that a lot of teamwork goes into Goodyear tire testing. But the competition on the track will continue to remain fierce through the end of the Chase, and who will ultimately emerge victorious is anybody’s guess.
“The points change so dramatically as the race unfolds…you have to win and anything can happen,” said Pemberton. “The points system, the way it’s laid out keeps everybody on their toes and keeps everybody running hard right to the last race.”
High stakes and hard racing promise to be on the agenda at Phoenix International Raceway as the inaugural AdvoCare 500 is shaping up to be a race fans won’t want to miss.