Matt Kenseth isn’t too excited about NASCAR requiring teams to use air ducts to help cool drivers this weekend at Michigan International Speedway.
The change was made after some drivers complained about the heat after last month’s Xfinity Series race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway using the high-drag package that will be used this weekend.
Teams had the option to use those air ducts but it impacted the car’s aerodynamics, so some drivers didn’t employ those devices.
Brad Keselowski said before the rule change was announced this week that he expected Sunday’s Sprint Cup race at Michigan to be “the toughest race probably for the year physically’’ for drivers.
Asked Friday if drivers were concerned about heat in the car this weekend, Kenseth said: “Well some of them must have been because they made a rules change. They let us get some more air in the car, which we’ve always had the option to and there were some drivers that got real hot and were very vocal, so now we all have to run with the ducts open to cool the cars, which has always been an option.
“The guys that were hot wanted to make everybody have it, so it wouldn’t just slow their cars, (it) would slow everybody. It all depends on the weather. With this package, it’s way hotter in the car than it is without it. Indy was almost unbearable in practice, but the race wasn’t really that bad, at least for me. I don’t really foresee any problems cooling the car for everybody. It’s definitely warmer than the normal package.”
Asked how the high-drag package may work this weekend at Michigan, Kenseth said: “I don’t know that it will be a lot different with what you feel in traffic and that type of thing. The race tracks are just massively different.’’