Drag racing is more than just a situation where you put the pedal to the metal and hang on for dear life.
Over the last decade-plus, technology found in other forms of motorsports such as IndyCar and NASCAR has also found its way into the world of National Hot Rod Association drag racing.
One of those technology elements that has taken on crucial importance is wind tunnel testing.
Racers talk about it all the time, it seems, but most fans really don’t have much of an idea of what goes on.
Former NHRA Pro Stock champion Allen Johnson recently took his new Hemi-powered Dodge Dart into the wind tunnel, and through the magic of video, fans can come along for the ride to see what goes on in testing as car bodies are eventually manipulated and reconfigured to maximize the best air flow over and around those bodies.
Click here to check out AutoMoto’s video of Johnson’s time in the wind tunnel, courtesy of AOL.
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Will Power posted the fastest lap in the third practice session for the Grand Prix of Alabama with a speed of 122.953 mph.
Rookie Robert Wickens (122.552 mph) was second fast, foretelling a continuation of his incredible rookie season.
Scott Dixon (122.237), Ryan Hunter-Reay (122.231) and Alexander Rossi (122.106) rounded out the top five.
The practice was interrupted several times for incidents.
Ed Jones spun off track in turn five after locking up his brakes with 30 minutes remaining in practice three. He was able to drive back to the pits under his own power.
With 20 minutes still on the clock, Jordan King took a trip into the fence after posting a fastest lap of 121.753 mph. He sustained substantial left side damage to his car and came back to the pits on the hook.
“I’m annoyed really,” King said afterward on the live stream at IndyCar.com. “I slightly locked the inside front, then just stayed off onto the grass and that was it. But I wasn’t really even pushing that hard.”
With two minutes remaining, Charlie Kimball lost power and pulled off the track, bringing an end to the practice session.
Dixon also had an off-road excursion.