Manufacturer testing for the 2018 Verizon IndyCar Series season got underway today, with Chevrolet testing two cars at the legendary Road America road course. Simon Pagenaud of Team Penske and Spencer Pigot of Ed Carpenter Racing were the drivers for today’s test. This is the first of five manufacturer tests that can be done before the end of the year. Private team testing begins in January, when teams will have their universal aero kits.
Pagenaud ran about 80 laps on Tuesday, and was very high on the changes coming to the series. “It’s very interesting, very different from the cars we’ve seen in the last few years, but quite enjoyable. There’s definitely less grip, which is very good. It’s just a different challenge and I enjoyed it.”
The 2016 series champion noted that the lap times were slightly slower than qualifying on red Firestone tires, but that was to be expected given the cool temperatures, less downforce, and only two cars on track.
Honda kicked off their testing at Mid-Ohio, with Chip Ganassi Racing and Schmidt Peterson Motorsports.
Honda did not name the drivers that tested the cars, Scott Dixon is Ganassi’s only confirmed driver for 2018, and James Hinchcliffe was SPM’s only full-season driver this past season. Hinchcliffe will likely return to the team, but is currently a free agent. The No. 7 car is one of the most coveted seats heading into the 2018 season.
Below is Pigot’s visor cam video, courtesy of IndyCar.
Photos courtesy of IndyCar