Kurt Busch and Martin Truex Jr. got their first taste of the Next Gen stock car for the 2022 Cup Series on Monday, as a two-day test session opened at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
The two former NASCAR Cup Series champions are on hand for the next step in the 2022 model’s development, including the first time that two prototypes of the new model are scheduled to be on track at the same time.
The two Next Gen tests are scheduled Monday and Wednesday at the Concord, North Carolina track. Monday’s test will be on the 2.32-mile oval/road course layout while Wednesday’s session will be held on the 1.5-mile D-shaped oval. Officials will use the Tuesday in between tests to change track configurations.
The sessions will mark the sixth and seventh on-track shakedowns for the proposed 2022 model. The most recent test was a two-day session at Dover International Speedway in August, when Sunoco Rookie of the Year Cole Custer took his first laps in the “P3” prototype, the third model built by Richard Childress Racing and NASCAR’s Research & Development team as a collaboration.
The Dover test was intended to test the model’s durability and adjustability, plus putting miles on some of the car’s final-production parts. Each test so far has been held using a single prototype.
Monday’s test marks the first official NASCAR test of the Next Gen model on a road course. IMSA team Action Express Racing held its own track day with a Next Gen car in August at the Daytona International Speedway road course.
Busch is driving the P3 prototype at Monday’s test, and Truex is behind the wheel of the Action Express test car.