VERIZON INDYCAR SERIES
TEAM CHEVY DRIVER END-OF-TEST QUOTES
FEBRUARY 10, 2018
AVONDALE, AZ – A total of 11 Chevrolet 2.2 liter V6 Twin Turbo Direct Injected IndyCar drivers completed two days of testing at ISM Raceway just outside Phoenix, Arizona signaling that the start of the 2018 Verizon IndyCar Series (VISC) season is right around the corner.
The Team Chevy contingent logged hundreds of laps learning the nuances of the all-new universal aerokit on an oval track. All previous testing has been on a variety of road courses.
Will Power, No. 12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet, led the Chevy drivers in lap count, 346 over the 12-hour, two-day test on the 1.022-mile track. He also turned the fastest time 19.3878 seconds at 189.769-mph which put him second on the combined speed chart for the five sessions.
Tony Kanaan, No., 14 ABC Supply AJ Foyt Racing Chevrolet, was third in the final order followed by defending VICS Champion Josef Newgarden, No. 1 Hitachi Team Penske Chevrolet, turned in the fourth quickest time to put three Chevrolet drivers in the top-four.
The season kicks off on the Streets of St. Petersburg, Florida March 9-11, 2018.
JOSEF NEWGARDEN, NO. 1 HITACHI TEAM PENSKE CHEVROLET: “It was okay. We’re still learning today. These are valuable sessions. I think we made a little more progress now and I’m excited to get going at night. I’m ready to run a little bit more in the No. 1 Hitachi Chevrolet.
FRIDAY QUOTE: “It was an okay day. It’s good to get back. It’s fun driving the Hitachi car officially today in an official session. We have a little bit of work to do and I feel like we got off to a good start. We’ll try and debrief tonight with everyone and see what we can do for tomorrow and make some more progress. Then we’ll come back here in April and we’ll be ready to rock.”
MATHEUS LEIST, NO. 4 ABC SUPPLY AJ FOYT RACING CHEVROLET: “The car was good and I think we are in good shape for the race here. I have to concentrate a little bit more on my race stints. The team did a great job. The last couple laps we were running in traffic and the car was actually very good. I made some great passes and then Rahal just brake-checked me going into Turn 3. I went to the outside and just got into the marbles and couldn’t stop the car. Just did a small touch on the wall but didn’t break anything. But it was a great day, great learning experience.”
FRIDAY QUOTE: “The car is great. The first practice we were fast. We have been working mainly on my side just for me to feel comfortable in the car, get laps down. I’m really happy with the performance of the whole team and with myself as well. We had two sessions and two top-10s including one top-five which is good. We need to do some race stints tomorrow to see how the car feels and probably improve a little bit. I’m happy with everything and I think we’re going the right way and hopefully we’ll have a great day tomorrow.”
WILL POWER, NO.12 VERIZON TEAM PENSKE CHEVROLET: “It’s been good. Definitely gone through all the processes and tried to do some qualifying simulations, because that’s what time we’ll be qualifying the car when we come back in April. Really enjoying this car, the 2018 car is awesome. Our No. 12 Verizon Chevy’s been pretty good the whole time, we just had the wrong gears in yesterday when we did our qualifying run. We’re really in a good window, I feel like. So are a lot of people, by the look of it.”
FRIDAY QUOTE: “Not bad. We ran through a lot of different stuff, and we got to do a full tank run, and running some traffic. We’re making some progress with the new car.”
TONY KANAAN, NO. 14 ABC SUPPLY AJ FOYT CHEVROLET: “It was a good couple of days. We tried to run in traffic a little bit at the end. It’s going to be tricky, it’s definitely going to be tricky. We are still learning about the downforce, but all in all I think it was a positive test for us. We learned a lot , we didn’t have any major problems, which that’s what we’re looking for at this team right now is just to build. Build confidence and build momentum. It’s a good couple of days, but that doesn’t mean anything. Next is St. Pete, and when we come back here it will probably be a different day, different weather, you never know. I’ll take it obviously, it’s been a really good day for us and a really good weekend like I said, but it doesn’t mean anything.”
FRIDAY QUOTE: “Positive day for us. First day on the oval, first day with this car. A lot of work to do trying to understand what we need when we come back. But I’m happy. We had a trouble free day apart from problems that we had that were not up to us to solve them—some telemetry issues and software issues. Slowly we’re getting the team to work better together. It’s nice to have the Boss around all the time. He lights up the timing stand for sure.”
ED CARPENTER, NO. 20 FUZZY’S VODKA ED CARPENTER RACING CHEVROLET: “We certainly accomplished more in this session than we did in yesterday’s first session, but we just aren’t there on speed yet. Fortunately, we have another three hours yet this evening to work on dialing in our set ups.”
FRIDAY QUOTE: “This wasn’t the kind of start we had last year at the open test, but at the same time it doesn’t really mean anything yet! We have some improvement to do and things we need to figure out with this new car. That’s definitely something we can accomplish at this point. We didn’t get as much done today as what we would have liked and need to work more on getting the car where it need to be to get a solid lap time out of it. The car isn’t bad by any means – our race pace is good – we are still just missing a little something to get higher lap times.”
SPENCER PIGOT, NO.21 FUZZY’S VODKA ED CARPENTER RACING CHEVROLET: “We are still working on getting more speed out of the car. I am looking forward to running in more race-like conditions tonight and getting more experience with that. We’ve got a good plan going into this evening and I’m ready to get back to work.”
FRIDAY QUOTE: “We really got through quite a few changes todays. Some of the things we did were good, some of there were not so good, but that’s how you learn. It was nice to get some more track time on the oval, especially with more cars out there. It was the first time I’ve ran on an oval in more race-like conditions and it was nice to get used to that. We are ending tonight with a good idea of what we need to fix for tomorrow.”
SIMON PAGENAUD, NO. 22 MENARDS TEAM PENSKE CHEVROLET: “It was good. Today we were doing some experiments. Yesterday we were very happy with the car in general. Today is a different day. We need to experiment to have a broader feel about this aero package. I wouldn’t say it was better but it was interesting to learn. So, so far, so good. I think we’re on the right path of learning in the No. 22 Menards Chevrolet and doing our homework. We’re having quite cool temperatures which it won’t be like that on the race weekend. We have to be cautious. We’re still having a lot of fun out there. I’ll be doing some more traffic running tonight to get a better feel of how it will be at a race.”
FRIDAY QUOTE: “It’s awesome to be back at an oval especially here for me since my first oval win was at Phoenix last year. I just love the new package with this car. It’s quite a bit different but that’s the kind of day I love. It’s when you have to work really hard with the engineer to figure it out and understand what does what. We got some good understanding today. We have a bit of homework ahead of us. So now we need to recoup and recap what happened today and understand the package. Overall, it’s a good start. They’re doing a good job with Chevy and I had a blast tonight.”
CHARLIE KIMBALL, NO. 23 TRESIBA CARLIN RACING CHEVROLET: “It’s been another productive session with the No. 23 Tresiba Chevy team. There are things we’re still working out, even just fundamentals with the new car, but we’re making progress every time we make a run. It will be valuable to finally have this data and start building from here. Overall, I’m just so encouraged and excited about this team and what we can accomplish this season. It’s step by step, and I know everyone at Carlin is pushing hard to be competitive from lap one.”
FRIDAY QUOTE: “It was a great first day with the new car. It’s a brand new car to the team and a brand new car on the oval. It ran really well – no mechanical issues at all. We had a few electronic gremlins, but it sounds like a lot of people up and down pit lane were struggling with the same issues. The team has just been working flat out all day, especially on the electronics side, just trying to get the data where they need it and getting all the sensors where they need them. Mechanically we’ve got a little ways to go on the car, but we made progress and we learned a lot. From this afternoon to this evening we took a big step forward in competitiveness and speed. There’s still a ways to go, but I have a lot of confidence in everyone here at Carlin.”
KYLE KAISER, NO. 32 JUNCOS RACING CHEVROLET:
MAX CHILTON, NO. 59 GALLAGHER CARLIN RACING CHEVROLET: “Its been a good couple of testing days here in Phoenix. We had a lot to learn coming into this weekend and I think we were able to make loads of progress. We’re still battling the same balance issues we had yesterday, but we were able to get quite a few things sorted out this afternoon and find some pace. The No. 59 Gallagher Chevrolet looks great on-track and it’s been a solid few days for the whole Carlin team. I’m looking forward to getting back out out there tonight and getting our race setup to where it needs to for the night race.”
FRIDAY QUOTE: “We have a lot to learn. I think it was a challenging day for everyone. There’s just a whole new way of driving to learn, especially for Carlin who has never ran an Indy car on an oval. We made big progressions today, which is really nice to see and we got into the ballpark at the end of the day. I’m glad it’s a two-day test and we still have tomorrow to continue progressing. If we can make the same jumps tomorrow that we made today, we’ll be looking really good.”
GABBY CHAVES, NO. 88 HARDING RACING CHEVROLET: FRIDAY QUOTE: “We just finished our first official team day at ISM Raceway today. We went through our run plan, made some changes and learned a few things. We didn’t end up where we wanted to be with the car, but we will take what we learned today and apply that for tomorrow and improve from there. We’ll be working hard to get our Harding Racing #88 Team Chevy car up to the front.”