No more buying tires?

UPDATE Goodyear officials confirmed that NASCAR has proposed a "lease" situation under which teams would not buy tires, per se, but would instead lease them from Goodyear. The idea is to limit the number of tires available to teams for testing, and thus to reduce testing, period. Teams still would pay the going price for a set of tires, about $1600, but all tires, used and unused, would be returned to Goodyear after each race. A similar rule is in place in IRL/IndyCar, for similar reasons. Teams often hoard unused tires for future track tests, with testing being a major expense. Speed Channel 05/06/05 A NASCAR spokesman confirmed Thursday that the sanctioning body could require teams to lease tires instead of buy them during race weekends, with the long-term purpose of limiting testing. NASCAR representatives have been in contact with Indy Racing League officials about a similar policy it uses in the IndyCar Series, spokesman Jim Hunter said. Under current IRL rules, teams are supplied with between seven and nine sets of tires for an event, depending on its distance, and a maximum of 35 sets for Indianapolis 500 activities during May. At the end of each event, teams must return all of those tires. For each of four open tests and three engine test dates allowed under IRL rules, teams can lease tires from Firestone. Again, all tires must be returned at the end of the tests. If NASCAR teams weren't allowed to buy tires from Goodyear specifically for testing and couldn't keep the ones they bought during race weekends, either, that would be one way to restrict testing to limits set by the sanctioning body. Hunter said NASCAR is still only considering such a move and added it would not be something it would adopt in the middle of a season.

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