Goodyear Fast Facts — COTAMARCH 21, 2023 AT 9:06 AM
NASCAR Cup Series – Race No. 6 – 68 laps / 231.88 miles
Circuit of The Americas (3.41-mile road course) – Austin, Tex.
Fast Facts for March 24-26, 2023
Tire: Goodyear Eagle 18-inch Road Course Radials
Set limits: Cup: 2 sets for practice, 1 set for qualifying and 6 sets for the race
(5 race sets plus 1 set transferred from qualifying)
Left-front & Right-rear — D-5212; Right-front & Left-rear – D-5213
Tire Circumference: 2,276 mm (89.61 in.)
Minimum Recommended Inflation:
Left Front — 20 psi; Right Front — 22 psi;
Left Rear — 17 psi; Right Rear — 17 psi
Storyline – Directionally mounted tire set-up at COTA: Circuit of The Americas is the first road course on the NASCAR Cup schedule again this season. This weekend, teams will run the same basic tire design on all four corners of the car, though there will be two tire codes – one on the left-front and right-rear, and one on the right-front and left-rear. Goodyear went to this system for the Cup cars on all road courses last season. This allows Goodyear to build each distinct code to have the tread run directionally and handle the different stresses asked of it, whether it is a front or rear, left-side or right-side. This reduces the stress on the tire’s tread splice, the area of the tread that is joined together in the manufacturing process. That comes into play specifically under heavy braking into the corners on the front tires and heavy acceleration off the corners on the rear tires. Having two tire codes ultimately helps teams identify on which corner of the car the tire is intended to be run – D-5212 on the left-front/right-rear and D-5213 on the right-front/left-rear. This, of course, differs from oval-track races where all the lefts have one code and all the rights have a different code.
“During the 2022 season, we moved to a different system of labeling tires for the Cup cars on road courses,” said Greg Stucker, Goodyear’s director of racing. “While we essentially build the same tire for all four corners of the car, we have two different D-codes to help identify the corners of the car each tire should be run on. This system of mounting the tires directionally helps to protect the beveled splice of the tread component, making sure it is ‘closed’ under braking on both front tires and closed under acceleration on both rears.
The other change for COTA this year incorporates a tread compound change determined at our tire test earlier this year. Based upon the test results, we expect to see an increased level of grip with higher rates of tire wear and fall-off over the course of a run. That should create more chances for passing later in a run based on how a driver manages his tires.”
Notes – New tire for Cup cars at COTA: Compared to what Cup teams ran at COTA in 2022, there are two changes with this tire set-up – (1) there will be two tire codes, with the left-front/right-rear and the right-front/left-rear being mounted directionally (see “Storyline” above), and (2) there is a compound change to give the cars more grip and introduce more tire wear and fall-off in lap times over the course of a run . . . this tire set-up came out of a Goodyear test at COTA in January . . . teams (drivers) participating in that test were the No. 2 Penske Racing Ford (Austin Cindric), No. 8 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet (Kyle Busch) and No. 45 23XI Racing Toyota (Tyler Reddick) . . . with this 18-inch tire, and its lower profile sidewall, NASCAR Cup cars will not run inner liners in any of their tires in 2023.
Wet Weather Tires – Goodyear brings white-lettered “wets” to COTA: Goodyear will bring its 18-inch wet weather radials to COTA for use by teams in the NASCAR Cup Series, should NASCAR decide that conditions warrant . . . the tread pattern on this tire is based on Goodyear’s Eagle Supercar 3 consumer tire . . . Cup teams will be allowed 5 sets of wet weather tires for the event, with a maximum of 4 sets for the race . . . NASCAR Cup teams last ran a wet weather tire in competition at Watkins Glen last August . . . in addition to the obvious difference of a tread pattern versus Goodyear’s dry weather “slick” tires, the “Goodyear” and “Eagle” lettering on the sidewalls of the wet weather tires is white, not the standard yellow.