Josef Newgarden is the latest to join the list of drivers to test the new IndyCar aeroscreen with Scott Dixon at Richmond International Raceway.
From IMS to Barber, the Red Bull Advanced Technologies-built aeroscreen has proved reliable everywhere and this week’s test at Richmond International Raceway was no exception to that rule, as IndyCar hit the track after 10 years.
It was the third aeroscreen run for IndyCar, with the plan to implement the cockpit safety device from 2020 onward after one final test on November 5 at Sebring. Reigning IndyCar champion and Team Penske’s Newgarden joined CGR’s Dixon, who last drove at IMS.
And much like that test at IMS, both drivers were positive about the device. “Perception-wise, it was a little different when I first got in the car, but it took maybe 30 or 40 laps and after that you’re pretty used to it. It’s pretty normal at this point,” said Newgarden.
He also spoke on the issue of the aeroscreen’s weight with that of the full IndyCar weight. “When I first went out my perception of how much grip the car and how much control I had was slightly different, but I think that’s because it felt foreign,” he said.
“You’re not used to having a screen over your head, but after 20 or 30 laps after you got used to it the car feels very similar in terms of how I drive the car or how the car feels compared to a place like Iowa or Gateway — it feels very similar.
“From a tuning standpoint, it didn’t take that much to get much to get it back into the correct window as far as the balance – the balance is very good even with the screen on. From that point I don’t think the cars are going to change that much going into next year.”
At the same time, Dixon stated that the ventilation issue had been largely resolved from his first run after he and Newgarden drove a combined 823 laps around the short oval circuit in comfort. “The airflow was good especially around the legs and body,” he said.
The development of the aeroscreen will continue on as IndyCar president Jay Frye announced about a public test at Richmond itself in early March, where all the teams will participate, in addition to the upcoming test at Sebring.
— Richmond Raceway (@RichmondRaceway) October 15, 2019
Here’s the details of the last test at Barber
The story was written by Duncan Leahy and edited by Darshan Chokhani