Power, Rosenqvist: Tire degradation will boost racing at COTA

Will Power and Felix Rosenqvist, the fastest drivers in practice at Circuit of The Americas, say that uncertainty over tire degradation should make IndyCar’s inaugural race at the Texan track an exciting one.

Power, Rosenqvist: Tire degradation will boost racing at COTA

Because COTA is the second longest track on the IndyCar schedule at 3.41 miles, Firestone’s black-sidewall primary tire this weekend uses the 2018 Road America [4.1 miles] construction with the 2018 Indy GP compound, while the red sidewall softer alternates are the same construction and compound as used at Road America last year.

However, the tires are still punished by the length, coarseness and number of corners on the track, and that’s a positive according to Power.

“The tires degrade so much,” he said, “I think it will create some good racing.

“I think there will be some mistakes. It's always hard to say. You see what happens in this series, they get so competitive, so tight, basically everyone almost runs the same speed. That's what makes it difficult to pass.

“[But] being a new track, no one knows what to expect for the race, so we’ll see.

“What happens when we use a tire that degrades a lot [is that it] prevents fuel saving, degrades so much that it's not worth going long [in a stint]. That’s probably what's going to happen here.

“[The tires] definitely go away – not terrible, but they do, so there will be struggling. If someone is on better tires, they’re going to get you, no question. It's a good thing, it really is.”
Chip Ganassi Racing’s star rookie, who was second fastest today, concurred, stating: “The tires seem to go off quite a lot and managing that is going to be the key.

“Everyone just got like one or two laps on the reds. Then it's a big question mark how they're going to behave in the race.

“I think it's going to be an interesting one. It's a big question mark, like it always is in this area. Kind of exciting. We’ve felt pretty good so far.”

Oval lesson

For Rosenqvist, this is a second visit to Texas in a week, having last Thursday taken his rookie oval test at Texas Motor Speedway. The Swedish sensation said that was a positive experience.

“That was the first time in an IndyCar that I tried an oval,” he said. “I did two ovals in Indy Lights, which was… not good! I really hated ovals back then.

“So I just tried to like reset, go back to zero. I'm working with the best guys in the business, with Dario [Franchitti], with my team, Chip Ganassi Racing. I think I couldn't have better teachers.

“I feel like now I have a different mindset to it. I'm pretty hungry to go racing there. I felt like I had confidence, so it was a good test, for sure.”

 

shares
comments
IndyCar sets new track limit rule at COTA

Previous article

IndyCar sets new track limit rule at COTA

Next article

Juncos still seeking IndyCar sponsors and an IMSA driver

Juncos still seeking IndyCar sponsors and an IMSA driver
Load comments
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
The lasting legacy of a fallen Indy car rookie Prime

The lasting legacy of a fallen Indy car rookie

Jeff Krosnoff was plucked out of obscurity to become a respected and highly popular professional in Japan, and then got his big break in CART Indy car for 1996. But a tragic accident at Toronto 25 years ago cut short a promising career and curtailed his regular teammate Mauro Martini's passion for racing.

IndyCar
Jul 14, 2021
The winners and losers in IndyCar 2021 – Mid-season review Prime

The winners and losers in IndyCar 2021 – Mid-season review

At the halfway point in the 2021 NTT IndyCar Series season, we've had seven winners in eight races, spread between five teams – none of them Team Penske. In this unusual season, even by IndyCar standards, who’s excelling and who’s dragging their heels? David Malsher-Lopez reports.

IndyCar
Jun 18, 2021
The joy that exposes F1’s key weakness Prime

The joy that exposes F1’s key weakness

Long-awaited wins for ex-Formula 1 drivers Marcus Ericsson and Kevin Magnussen in IndyCar and IMSA last weekend gave F1 a reminder of what it is missing. But with the new rules aimed at levelling the playing field, there’s renewed optimism that more drivers can have a rewarding result when their day of days comes

Formula 1
Jun 17, 2021
Castroneves: How I kept it under control to make Indy 500 history Prime

Castroneves: How I kept it under control to make Indy 500 history

Helio Castroneves’ overwhelming vivaciousness outside the cockpit belies a hardcore racer who knows how to plot his moves – and then recall it all for us. A day after his fourth Indy 500 win, Helio explained his tactics to David Malsher-Lopez.

IndyCar
Jun 2, 2021
How 'chess master' Castroneves cemented his Indy legend status Prime

How 'chess master' Castroneves cemented his Indy legend status

Helio Castroneves joined AJ Foyt, Al Unser and Rick Mears with the most Indianapolis 500 wins after sweeping around the outside of Alex Palou on the penultimate lap in a thrilling climax. In one race, he validated Michael Shank's and Jim Meyer's faith in him, and Helio himself discovered there's life after Penske after all.

IndyCar
Jun 1, 2021