Busch Series to switch cars

UPDATE NASCAR is currently in preliminary discussions with manufacturers regarding the use of different car models in the Busch Series. Robin Pemberton, NASCAR's vice president for competition, said manufacturer representatives have approached NASCAR about the idea in recent weeks.

"There is some support from the manufacturers to utilize a different car model in the series," he said.

A secondary effect of any change would be to help differentiate the Busch Series from its Nextel Cup counterpart.

Both series use similar cars, which differ only in wheelbase, height and horsepower. Also this season, a growing number of Cup drivers have been participating in the Busch series, with seven drivers running full schedules in both series.

Cup driver Kevin Harvick has two wins in the series and holds a commanding lead in the points eight races into the season. ThatsRacin.com

04/18/06 NASCAR continues to look for a way to differentiate the Busch Series from the premiere Nextel Cup Series, in answer to critics who suggest Busch has become Cup Lite, with near-identical cars and a plethora of invading Nextel Cup drivers. One possible way: Change the Busch Series cars from sedans to the manufacturers’ “pony" cars—the Ford Mustang, Chevrolet Camaro, Dodge Challenger and Toyota Solara. Sound farfetched? It isn’t. “It’s under discussion with NASCAR," said John Fernandez, director of Dodge’s racing operation. “It isn’t to what I’d consider the serious stage, but it is under discussion." Dan Davis, director of Ford Racing Technology, said, “We’ve discussed it. And I’d like to see it. We need to do something about the Busch Series." Given the production schedule of the Camaro and Challenger, it is unlikely those cars would be able to enter the Busch Series before the 2008 season, with 2009 a more likely scenario. By then Nextel Cup’s Car of Tomorrow redesign should be in place. One scenario would have the Busch pony cars built on modified platforms from the Nextel Cup cars used now, thus helping team owners who say the Car of Tomorrow seriously reduces the value of the old cars. Manufacturers are hoping that if it happens, NASCAR will allow the pony car racers. AutoNews.com

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