IndyCar aeroscreen makes track testing debut at Phoenix

Four-time IndyCar champion Scott Dixon gave a generally positive verdict after giving the new aeroscreen its first run on track, but suggested some work needs to be done before it is implemented at all tracks.

IndyCar aeroscreen makes track testing debut at Phoenix
Scott Dixon, Chip Ganassi Racing Honda consults with IndyCar personnel after first aeroscreen run
Scott Dixon, Chip Ganassi Racing Honda testing the new aeroscreen
Scott Dixon, Chip Ganassi Racing Honda testing the new aeroscreen
Scott Dixon, Chip Ganassi Racing Honda testing the new aeroscreen
Scott Dixon, Chip Ganassi Racing Honda tests the aeroscreen
Scott Dixon, Chip Ganassi Racing Honda tests the aeroscreen

The windscreen is made of a proprietary Opticor advanced transparency material by PPG, the same material the company uses in its production of fighter jet canopies. However, there was some debate whether its curvature or rake might cause visual distortion for the IndyCar drivers, but Dixon said not.

He told reporters: “There’s no game-stoppers. It’s a little bit different looking through something that’s so thick, but I thought it would be worse with distortion but there was nothing like that. We’ll run it a little bit later to see what it’s like as the sun is setting, and then again at night.”

However, the Chip Ganassi Racing-Honda driver noted two major side-effects – one good, one bad.

“The weirdest thing is how quiet it is. You have no buffeting, the car feels very smooth, it feels like you’re in a luxury well-damped car.

“But cooling! We need some cooling, just because you get no airflow through the car. Kudos to [IndyCar and PPG], but there’s definitely things that we can improve on and make better.”

Different effects on different drivers

Trying to transfer his perceptions from that first run at ISM Raceway in Phoenix to other tracks on the schedule, Dixon noted: “I think it will be interesting on a road and street course in terms of perception of the corner and how you come into it,” he said. “[We need to] see if there’s an issue regarding where you look through it. But nothing yet.

“Visually, I want to see if you get more used to it, because it does feel different. You’re looking through quite a substantial amount of material and it just takes a while for your eyes to adjust. The longer I ran, the more I adapted to it. Your brain and eyes just need to catch up with it. We’ll see later on tonight if that gets better.”

Asked if there was a prism effect from the sun glare, Dixon said, “No. Right now is one of the worst times to run here because you’re going from complete blinding sunlight heading into Turn 1 and then a black transformation going through the corner [because of the shadows of the grandstands]. And no, there was no real area of light that stopped your vision. It may have even helped a little bit with the glare you typically get through your [helmet] visor.”

Dixon said he would suggest all IndyCar drivers need to get acclimated to the new view from the cockpit.

“It could affect different guys in different ways,” he acknowledged. “It’s almost like something everyone needs to try before IndyCar implement it across the board.”

 

 

shares
comments
Juncos Racing reveals IndyCar livery for 2018

Previous article

Juncos Racing reveals IndyCar livery for 2018

Next article

Fittipaldi says ovals in IndyCar are “amazing”

Fittipaldi says ovals in IndyCar are “amazing”
Load comments
Remembering Dan Wheldon and his last and most amazing win Prime

Remembering Dan Wheldon and his last and most amazing win

Saturday, Oct. 16th, marks the 10th anniversary Dan Wheldon’s death. David Malsher-Lopez pays tribute, then asks Wheldon’s race engineer from 2011, Todd Malloy, to recall that magical second victory at the Indianapolis 500.

Have Harvey and RLL formed IndyCar’s next winning match-up? Prime

Have Harvey and RLL formed IndyCar’s next winning match-up?

Jack Harvey’s move to Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing sparked plenty of debate, but their combined strength could prove golden, says David Malsher-Lopez.

Why Kyle Kirkwood is America's new IndyCar ace-in-waiting Prime

Why Kyle Kirkwood is America's new IndyCar ace-in-waiting

Kyle Kirkwood, the record-setting junior formula driver, sealed the Indy Lights championship last weekend. But despite an absurdly strong résumé and scholarship money, his next move is far from clear. By David Malsher-Lopez.

IndyCar
Oct 6, 2021
2021 IndyCar title is just the start for Ganassi's newest star Prime

2021 IndyCar title is just the start for Ganassi's newest star

Alex Palou has captured Chip Ganassi Racing's 14th IndyCar drivers' championship, and in truly stellar manner. David Malsher-Lopez explains what made the Palou-Ganassi combo so potent so soon.

IndyCar
Sep 28, 2021
Why Grosjean's oval commitment shows he's serious about IndyCar Prime

Why Grosjean's oval commitment shows he's serious about IndyCar

One of motorsport’s worst-kept secrets now out in the open, and Romain Grosjean has been confirmed as an Andretti Autosport IndyCar driver in 2022. It marks a remarkable turnaround after the abrupt end to his Formula 1 career, and is a firm indication of his commitment to challenge for the IndyCar Series title  

IndyCar
Sep 24, 2021
IndyCar’s longest silly-season is still at fever pitch Prime

IndyCar’s longest silly-season is still at fever pitch

The 2021 IndyCar silly season is one of the silliest of all, but it’s satisfying to see so many talented drivers in play – including Callum Ilott. David Malsher-Lopez reports.

IndyCar
Sep 11, 2021
IndyCar young guns are great, but the elders aren’t done yet Prime

IndyCar young guns are great, but the elders aren’t done yet

The ace 20-somethings in IndyCar have risen to become title contenders, but the best of the series veterans are digging deep and responding – and will continue to do so over the next couple of years, says David Malsher-Lopez.

IndyCar
Aug 20, 2021
The F1 champion who became an Indy king in his second career Prime

The F1 champion who became an Indy king in his second career

Emerson Fittipaldi’s decision to go racing with his brother led to him falling out of F1, but he bloomed again on the IndyCar scene. NIGEL ROEBUCK considers a career of two halves

Formula 1
Jul 31, 2021