SPEED COMPLETES FIRST ARCA TEST Scott Speed, former Formula 1 Scuderia Toro Rosso driver, got behind the wheel of a stock car for the first time ever in today's ARCA RE/MAX Series test at Talladega Superspeedway. Team Red Bull recently announced...
SPEED COMPLETES FIRST ARCA TEST
Scott Speed, former Formula 1 Scuderia Toro Rosso driver, got behind the wheel of a stock car for the first time ever in today's ARCA RE/MAX Series test at Talladega Superspeedway. Team Red Bull recently announced that Speed will make his stock car racing debut in the No. 21 Red Bull Toyota in the ARCA race at Talladega Superspeedway on Oct. 5, 2007.
Describe your first day of testing.
"The banking here is pretty incredible and intimidating. Having never sat in a stock car and to just go out there and run the first lap flat against the wall -- I'd be lying if I said that was easy! That took a bit of bravery. The banking here is just super."
"The car is so much heavier than a Formula 1 car and you feel so much more movement. This car is about three times the weight of a Formula 1 car, so it moves a lot on the springs and tires. It's just a big moving mass and you feel really tiny inside of it. A Formula 1 car is so small and stiff, if you even think about wanting to go right - you're going right."
"It's interesting to see how the team works together. This whole scene reminds me more of my karting days how the guys would work on the car and you're standing right there watching them. Also, the other teams were so willing to come over and share information and that just doesn't happen in Formula 1."
"It was a pretty easy test for me because I was just driving flat out the whole time. I feel like the crew worked so hard and I just got in the car and drove. Being fast at Talladega has more to do with the car than the driver. The team worked all day making small changes to the car just trying to find more speed."
What surprised you the most from today's test?
"That they fill up the cars at a normal gas pump at the race track that looks like one you'd pull into if you were just driving down the road. That was so bizarre for me!"
"Also, in open-wheel racing, you always have someone on the team who buckles you into your seat. I got into my seat today waiting for someone to buckle me in and then after awhile realized I was supposed to buckle myself in. I'm not used to bringing my own helmet to the car either!"
"The most surprising thing is that I just don't dress like these people yet (sarcastic). I got harassed by some of the ARCA officials for my shorts -- which I wasn't supposed to be wearing in the garage -- and for my hat because it's what Europe would call high fashion, but I guess it's not considered that here."
What's the biggest challenge you'll face going into your first ARCA race next week?
"It will be so intense to race here. You're just hauling ass because it's so fast. It's not going to be easy to throw that thing into a corner at 170 mph. I have to learn how to draft and how to race these cars too. Learning how to run so close together with so many guys will be wild."
-credit: team red bull