While many Late Model series will be using the next generation of body in the 2021 season following its approval by the ABC Committee last Thursday, the Granite State Pro Stock Series approved the body for usage in the 2020 season last November.
During an interview on Speed51’s “The Bullring,” GSPSS President Mike Parks outlined the decision making that led to the approval.
The Granite State Pro Stock Series will allow both the Five Star Race Car Bodies “Gen 6” body as well as the AR Bodies’ “Revolution” re-skin kit in 2020, as well as the traditional, previously approved ABC bodies. Competitors utilizing the new bodies will carry a 20-pound weight penalty for the 2020 racing season.
Parks explained that he expected the new bodies to carry a competitive advantage when they were first introduced. However, seeing them in action in various tours such as the Pro All Stars Series provided evidence that may not be the case.
“I’m a firm believer in the ABC package,” Parks began. “After seeing what we saw last year, I came to the conclusion that the Gen 6 body was not the advantage I initially thought it would be.”
The decisive race for Parks’ mindset was the Motor Mountain Masters event at Jennerstown Speedway (PA), when two nearly equal race cars battled for the win, with the old body taking the victory.
“I went to the race at Jennerstown, this past summer, the Masters race, and the first two cars were basically Port City House Cars,” Parks stated. “One had the Gen 6, the other had the ABC. Todd Stone, who races with us weekly, won the race with the ABC car. That pretty much made my mind up at that time, but we waited until the end of the year to make an announcement.”
While he feels the old and new bodies provide a level playing field, he still felt it was important to enforce a 20-pound weight penalty for those transitioning to the new bodies so lower-budget teams wouldn’t feel pressured to make the jump straight away.
“We put a minimal weight penalty on it. I didn’t want our weekly teams to feel they had to go out and spend the money to change because of a performance advantage. We put a small weight penalty on it, and I’m sure with time that penalty will go away, too.”
While Parks and the rest of the GSPSS team have approved the new body and understand the energy it brings to the table, he admits he didn’t feel it was needed or that it will be a drastic long-term change for the sport.
“I don’t think we needed a new body. I’m not going to say it’s not something the fans will enjoy, but I didn’t feel like there was anything wrong with the ABC package we had.
“I think what we’ll find is, three years from now, all the cars are going to look the same all over again. Have we accomplished anything? My only concern is having a body package that is tech enforceable and everyone is on a level playing field with aero.”
Parks also discussed the upcoming GSPSS season during the interview on “The Bullring.” Fans can see the full interview by clicking here.
“The Bullring” airs every Monday starting at 7 a.m. ET from Studio 51 in Concord, North Carolina. Fans can watch each week on Speed51 or Speed51’s Facebook Feed presented by Five Star Race Car Bodies.
-Story by: Zach Evans, Speed51 Content Supervisor – Twitter: @ztevans
-Photo credit: Speed51 Photo