Courtesy of CART Online
Patrick Racing Completes First Test Of New Reynard
CART Online (November 25) -- Patrick Racing driver Scott Pruett recently completed his first test of the off-season in the team's new 1998 Reynard 98I chassis at Sebring last week. After being rained out November 13 and 14, the team tested last Monday and Tuesday at Sebring International Raceway. Pruett (Patrick Racing Reynard Ford) pronounced himself pleased with the new Reynard's performance.
"It is very driver- and mechanic-friendly," he said. "This first test was virtually problem-free. There isn't a huge performance gain in the car over last year, but the biggest thing with Reynard is the process of evolution. The whole process and the way they go about it shows Reynard's dedication and determination to stay on top by continually refining, designing and developing new parts."
Jim McGee, Patrick Racing general manager, saw more of a performance gain in the new Reynard during Pruett's test.
"They made a big improvement in the systems area, and the aerodynamic configuration has also been improved," McGee said. "Scott was the only one in the '98 Reynard and he was about one second quicker than anyone else at Sebring."
Pruett's new teammate, Adrian Fernandez (Tecate/Quaker State Reynard Ford), ran a '97 Reynard during his first test with the Patrick team.
"This was one of the most productive tests I have ever had from both the technical and driving standpoint," said Fernandez, who joined Patrick Racing last month after two years with the Tasman Motorsports Group. "I really ran a lot of miles. I like working with the whole team, especially John [Ward, chief engineer] and Scott. Scott and I worked well together. We exchanged a lot of ideas and information. I am looking forward to working with the team and I think this season is shaping up to be the most successful in my career."