Chevrolet Tests the New IndyCar in Texas

Chevrolet drivers Ed Carpenter, Josef Newgarden, and Spencer Pigot had the chance to experiment with IndyCar’s new aero kit at Texas Motor Speedway. 

This was the first time Chevrolet teams had a chance to evaluate the new universal superspeedway package following Honda’s test at the 1.5-mile Texas oval last month. 

Newgarden, who is the reigning Verizon IndyCar Series champion, was on hand representing Team Penske, while Carpenter and Pigot shared seat time in the Ed Carpenter Racing entry. There were other Chevrolet-backed teams present, but running was restricted to just the two teams. 

“We have the new aero kit, obviously, which has been tested with the Honda guys (at Texas) and now we’re the Chevy group trying it out for ourselves,” Newgarden was quoted as saying. 

“It feels different. I wouldn’t say it feels drastically different from a feel standpoint (compared to the past aero kits). I think this type of oval will be less of a change than some of the other tracks with the aero configurations, but there are small differences just running by ourselves. I’m sure I’ll have more of a feeling difference when I get to run in traffic. That’s only by myself where I’ve not noticed as big of a shift.

Starting in 2018, all entries will be equipped with a universal aero kit developed by the series and its chassis manufacturer, Dallara, following three years of bespoke aero kit competition between Honda and Chevrolet.

“We’re just working through different aero sweeps,” Newgarden continued. “Understanding what it does with where we were last year and what it’s going to do with what we’re probably going to go as a series going into next year, as far as downforce levels and were the series is going to want us at. Understand the differences with the car and gather data going into the offseason and have something to work on. That’s really been our objective this morning.”

Both manufacturers will test again in December, each with two cars at its disposal. The rest of the IndyCar paddock will receive their aero kits before the end-of-year holidays, allowing the teams to prep before testing begins in earnest on January 7.

The 2018 Verizon IndyCar Series season opens with the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg, from March 9-11.

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