It looks like NASCAR will move ahead with its Nationwide Series COT program as soon as 2010.
Of course they will wait to talk with Nationwide series owners to help figure out how to best activate this program, but it looks like a version of the COT will debut in the Nationwide series in 2010.
At the moment, it looks like the COT will be used at both Daytona and Talladega, along with both road course races at Montrealand Watkins Glen. That would give the owners and NASCAR five races to shake down the new COT platform under competitive circumstances.
Now, while the Nationwide series COT will feature many of the safety innovations built into the COT cars of the Sprint Cup series, this car will look very different.
The most glaring difference is the Nationwide version will not have a wing, but a spoiler.
This car will also be different in ways that cannot be seen.
The most notable of these differences is the fact that the Nationwide version will have more traditional front shocks, and it will not ride on bump stops the way the Sprint Cup version will.
This seems to be an attempt by NASCAR to make these cars so different that virtually no competitive advantage will be had by Sprint Cup drivers running full or partial Nationwide series schedules.
NASCAR also seems to want to make the frames similar enough to help cup owners run developmental drivers in the nationwide series at a reduced cost.
If they can do this effectively, the future of this series would be all that much brighter.