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Sitting here watching the Daytona 500, I wondered about the engines. Are they all the same? What is allowed and what is not? So I sniffed around and found a good article written in 2007 Under the Hood of a NASCAR Racer - ThomasNet News that answered most of my questions, and enjoyed this within the article "...One major area of differentiation among the engine design teams relates to valve timing. Some early engine designers prefer the old single camshaft for intake and exhaust valves. Other engineers moved on to the twin camshafts — one for intake and the other for exhaust — which permit variable valve timing. Alfa Romeo pioneered this technology."

So join me in my new quest to enlighten every NASCAR fan regarding the heritage we share the next time I'm asked... "Alpha Romero- who makes that?"
 

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Yeah, Alfa introduced variable valve timing, but Honda really developed it with their VTEC version. Regarding NASCAR (or, as some say NASCRAP) their mantra is "Managed Competition" which essentially means hardly any innovation is allowed and the cars are literally "Spec racers" with little variation between brands.

In spite of that, I find myself watching NASCAR. Just because I don't necessarily agree with the sanctioning body, or the suffocating control and greed of the France family, doesn't mean the drivers and teams are bad; they really work to maximize what they are allowed to do within the very narrow limits of what is allowable. End of rant...

Sitting here watching the Daytona 500, I wondered about the engines. Are they all the same? What is allowed and what is not? So I sniffed around and found a good article written in 2007 Under the Hood of a NASCAR Racer - ThomasNet News that answered most of my questions, and enjoyed this within the article "...One major area of differentiation among the engine design teams relates to valve timing. Some early engine designers prefer the old single camshaft for intake and exhaust valves. Other engineers moved on to the twin camshafts — one for intake and the other for exhaust — which permit variable valve timing. Alfa Romeo pioneered this technology."

So join me in my new quest to enlighten every NASCAR fan regarding the heritage we share the next time I'm asked... "Alpha Romero- who makes that?"
 

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Just got back from the Daytona 500. I've been going since 1984. T.V. does it NO justice. It is a site to see. I'll be going back again.
I'm probably the only guy walking around with an Alfa t-shirt on his back.

The only piece of the motor that is common between the cars is the engine block. All the other components are unique to each brand of vehicle.
 

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Yeah, Alfa introduced variable valve timing, but Honda really developed it with their VTEC version. Regarding NASCAR (or, as some say NASCRAP) their mantra is "Managed Competition" which essentially means hardly any innovation is allowed and the cars are literally "Spec racers" with little variation between brands.

In spite of that, I find myself watching NASCAR. Just because I don't necessarily agree with the sanctioning body, or the suffocating control and greed of the France family, doesn't mean the drivers and teams are bad; they really work to maximize what they are allowed to do within the very narrow limits of what is allowable. End of rant...
Essentially every form of Motorsport these days carefully "manages competition". Once technology began to produce race cars that could travel faster than their drivers and circuits could realistically handle, there wasn't much of a choice. Bill Elliot running 220MPH many years ago, ending the unlimited CAN AMs, restricting the speed of F1(remember the turbo era?), GT Corvettes that are actually a hundred horsepower less than the street versions, etc all meant limits would be imposed.
I read somewhere that if the CAN AM existed today with the same rule book of 1973, the cars would be able to exceed 300MPH, and pull Gs high enough to require G-suits. They would also have the possibility of making the Mercedes tragedy of the 50s look like a fender bender, should one of the cars leave the track at those speeds.
The team tech and development prowess in NASCAR is actually second only to F1. No surprise as nothing has the budget of F1.
 
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