Chevy Racing–Will Power Puts Chevrolet V6 Power on Top of the Leaderboard for First Day of Testing at Barber Motorsports Park

Will Power Puts Chevrolet V6 Power on Top of the Leaderboard for First Day of Testing at Barber Motorsports Park
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (March 12, 2012) – Team Penske’s Will Power, No. 12 Verizon Chevrolet, landed on the top of the leaderboard with the fastest lap time in both the morning and afternoon sessions of Day One of the IZOD IndyCar Series Open Test at Barber Motorsports Park.  Power’s lap time today of 01:07.8625, bested the track record he set at the track in 2012 of 1:09:8524.
Giving Chevrolet the top-three quickest times of the day were Helio Castroneves, No. 3 Hitachi Team Penske Chevrolet with a lap time of 01:07.9388 followed by James Hinchcliffe, No. 27 Andretti Autosport Chevrolet who turned his fastest lap at 01:07.9869.
“We were very pleased with the results of today’s testing at Barber Motorsports Park,” said Chris Berube, Chevrolet Motorsports Program Manager, IZOD IndyCar Series. “It is good to have all of our Chevrolet IndyCar V6 teams and drivers on track to test the results of a great deal of hard work during the off-season.  We continue to learn more during each test in our quest for consistently top performance and reliability.  The 2013 IndyCar racing season will be more competitive than ever, and we know we have to bring our “A” game to every race.  Our teams, along with our technical partners, have put forth a dedicated effort to be well prepared for the first race at St. Petersburg (Florida) and beyond.”
E.J. Viso, No. 5 Team Venezuela/PDVSA Citgo Andretti Autosport Chevrolet, Simona de Silvestro, No. 78 Nuclear Entergy Areva KV Racing Technology Chevrolet and Oriol Servia, No. 22 Panther Dryer and Reinbold Racing Chevrolet also turned in quick laps that landed them in the top-10 of the order at the end of the day.
The second and final day of the Barber Open Test will begin Wednesday at 10:00 a.m. CT.
WILL POWER, NO. 12 VERIZON TEAM PENSKE CHEVROLET, FASTEST IN DAY-ONE TESTING: TALK ABOUT THE SESSIONS TODAY AND GETTING THE SEASON STARTED: “These cars are unbelievably hooked up around here. It must be three seconds a lap quicker than the lap I did in qualifying. I have never felt so much grip in this car. Good to have Team Penske one and two. It’s only testing. It’s only the first day of testing. But, it shows we have worked hard over the winter. I think as a team we are very determined to tick a couple of boxes this year. Obviously the Indy 500 and the championship are absolutely at the top of the list. We’ve let it go too many times now. So, a good start.”
HOW IMPORTANT IS TESTING HERE FOR YOU TO BE ABLE TO FIND MORE SUCCESS LATER IN THE SEASON TO WIN THE CHAMPIONSHIP? “It’s important testing here for actually racing here. It’s not very relevant anywhere else. It’s a pretty unique track. It’s very nice, fast, flowing circuit. We’ll get as much as we can out of testing here. Obviously when we go to St. Pete, it is a very different track. Very bumpy, low grip and different tires. I think we’re prepared for that too. We expect to be fighting for the win in the first four races for sure.”
DO YOU HAVE ANY ADVICE FOR AJ (ALLMENDINGER) TO KEEP HIM FROM GETTING FRUSTRATED?  “I think he’s doing a bloody good job for someone who hasn’t been in these cars for seven years or something. He’s been driving a stock car which is so different to an Indy car, especially around this place where downforce plays a big part. The car’s just stuck, and it’s really hard to understand the limit. But he keeps creeping up. He keeps getting closer. I think where he is right now, he’s in a good place. He doesn’t need to get frustrated. He just needs to chip away at it, and he’ll get there because he’s been really fast in open wheel cars.  He just gets better every time he goes out, so he shouldn’t feel discouraged at all.”
YOU SAID YOU WENT TWO SECONDS FASTER THAN QUALIFYING LAST YEAR. DO YOU THINK THAT IS JUST FROM WORK THAT HAS BEEN DONE OVER THE WINTER ON THE CAR? “Yes, work that was done over the year last year. Also engine work. And, it is little cooler which helps grip. It is just a very fast situation?
IS THERE SOMETHING ABOUT THE BRAKING ZONES HERE? “You don’t really brake here in IndyCar. There is only one place you brake really. It is the cars. It’s the temperatures. Remember, we are on black tires, so you can imagine when you put the reds on. It’s going to be fast.”
ARE YOU RUNNING THE TEST ON THE TIRES YOU WILL RACE ON? “No, you don’t get to run on the red tires – the soft compounds. We are just running on the black compound. We don’t get to use the reds until we qualify. The reds should degrade quicker than the blacks. Hopefully they keep it as it was last year because that made for really good racing.”   
HELIO CASTRONEVES, NO. 3 HITACHI TEAM PENSKE CHEVROLET: ON TODAY’S TESTING: “Wow it was fun to get back out there today in the No. 3 Hitachi Team Penske Chevrolet. The car was really fast and P2 today shows all the hard work the Team Penske and Chevrolet guys have put in over the offseason. The grip was incredible and the close times today show how competitive the racing will be this year. Hopefully tomorrow is another good day so we can keep getting ready for St. Pete.”
SIMONA DE SILVESTRO, NO. 78 NUCLEAR ENTERGY AREVA KV RACING TECHNOLOGY CHEVROLET: ON TODAY’S TESTING:  “I think it was a good day. We lost a little bit of time so we didn’t get to run that much. But, I feel like every time we were on the track we made improvements and that’s what counts. I think we can be pretty happy with the day and hopefully we can even make a step more forward tomorrow.”
TONY KANAAN, NO. 11 KV RACING TECHNOLOGY CHEVROLET: ON TODAY’S TESTING: “It’s good to finally be back on track. We had a lot of down time today sorting out a couple of things in the #11 KV Racing car and did not put in the amount of laps that we were anticipating, but we still had a productive day. I’m looking forward to tomorrow to get more laps in the car. St. Pete can’t come soon enough.”
ED CARPENTER, NO. 20 FUZZY’S PREMIUM ULTRA VODKA ED CARPENTER RACING CHEVROLET: ON TODAY’S TESTING: “I was pleased with how we started out today. We made some good gains at the test at Sonoma last week. So we are ahead of our setup from last year here. We made good adjustments through the lunch hour. But we hit a bit of a wall in the afternoon. What is good about our team now is that we know the direction we are headed. That wasn’t the case last year. We were still learning some much about the team and the car in the first year. Overall, I think we have now found a good start for Wednesday’s testing. Being a one-car team, we are really trying to find things on our own. So the learning process is a little slower for us than the multi-car teams. But I am pleased where we are headed right now.”
SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS, NO. 7 DRAGON RACING CHEVROLET: ON TODAY’S TESTING: “Today wasn’t the best day as we had some issues with the car causing us to not have much time on track. We’ve got work to do, some new things to try, and some ground to make. Tomorrow we are going to restrict our running time as we do not want to put too many miles on this engine, but we still look to accomplish a lot more than we did today.”
SEBASTIAN SAAVEDRA, NO. 6 DRAGON RACING CHEVROLET: ON TODAY’S TESTING: “It was a very interesting day for us as we continued to try different things from the last couple of tests. Our main goal was to get me connected with the team, my new engineer and for my team to get to know my driving style and I think from that aspect it was a very successful day. We were not satisfied with the times, but we were also on a different plan than others and I am looking forward to tomorrow as we have a lot of space for improvement. I am very satisfied with my crew and how we are
getting to know each other like a family.”
“Today was another positive step in the learning process and I thought the No. 2 IZOD Team Penske Chevrolet showed some good speed. We need as many laps as we can get but my teammates are being great about sharing information to accelerate the learning curve and I am excited to see what we can get done tomorrow.”
E.J. VISO, NO. 5 TEAM VENEZUELA/PDVSA CITGO ANDRETTI AUTOSPORT CHEVROLET: ON TODAY’S TESTING: “I’m extremely happy to be with Andretti Autosport. The setup that we used was very refreshing and it’s nice to start the season with all good things. I’m looking forward to having a great season, and thanks to all my sponsors for the support.”
JAMES HINCHCLIFFE, NO. 27 GODADDY.COM ANDRETTI AUTOSPORT CHEVROLET: ON TODAY’S TESTING: “It’s really not a bad start. We had a strong car here last year and we knew what to show up with for the most part. Today was a lot of working through a lot of the things the engineers dreamed up during the offseason. Some were good and some were bad, but ultimately, it was good to end up in the top three. There’s still some time to find in all the Andretti Autosport cars, and hopefully, we can go challenge those Penske cars tomorrow.”