Spoiler change to come next week at Martinsville

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CONCORD, N.C. (AP) — NASCAR will officially move from the wing to the more traditional spoiler at next weekend’s race at Martinsville Speedway.

Martinsville had been targeted for the transition, and NASCAR vice president of competition Robin Pemberton confirmed Wednesday that spoilers have been shipped to Sprint Cup teams and will be used for the first time at the Virginia short track.

“It’s as soon as we could be ready,” Pemberton said of selecting Martinsville for the spoiler.

The spoiler was tested by 25 Cup teams on Tuesday at Talladega Superspeedway, and there’s a two-day test scheduled for next week at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

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NASCAR decided in January it would return the spoiler to the race cars, a decision based on improving the racing and pleasing fans who did not like the look of the wing. Officials told teams the spoiler will replicate the downforce and balance that is being produced on the current car.

NASCAR in 2007 phased in a new car that replaced the spoiler with a wing. Many drivers were slow to adapt to the new car, which went to full-time use in 2008, and fans had claimed the car had made the racing boring. Through four races this season, the racing is much improved, but the spoiler is expected to turn it up another notch.

“I think the racing is pretty good, but I think (the spoiler) is an opportunity to change things up a little bit,” Pemberton said. “Quite frankly, the wing wasn’t accepted as widely as we had hoped it would have been by competitors and the fans alike. After much effort, we started looking and decided to go back to the spoiler.”

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