The General Tire 200 that is to be held at Talladega Superspeedway Friday, May 5 represents the end of an era for the ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards.
The steel-bodied cars will be making their final laps at Talladega to make way for the newer ARCA composite material bodied cars which will be mandatory at both Daytona and Talladega in 2018. The composite bodies, manufactured by Five Star Bodies, are easily identifiable as Chevrolet SS, Ford Fusion and Toyota Camry cars. As the bodies have become prevalent in the series, teams have benefited from cost containment in repairs as well as standardized body panels and reduced investment in aerodynamic research and development.
The ARCA composite bodied cars were first eligible in 2015 on tracks one mile and less in length. Eligibility was expanded in 2016 to all tracks except the restrictor plate events at Daytona and Talladega. Effective in 2018, the composite body is the only eligible body for Daytona and Talladega, while both composite and steel bodies remain eligible for competition at all other events.