Last week’s IndyCar test at Sebring featured 10 Chevrolet drivers, and while we hit the Ganassi and Penske contingents, they weren’t alone as part of the manufacturer’s group on hand at the short course.
With his initial test now out of the way at Ed Carpenter Racing, Mike Conway was able to push a bit more in the No. 20 Fuzzy’s Vodka entry. Conway is adjusting to a Chevrolet after campaigning a Honda powerplant in his seven 2013 races with Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing and Dale Coyne Racing.
“We got a lot of work done, but then coming here for this one, and with the 2014 specs applies to the engine, there is a lot of stuff to get through,” Conway explained. “New for everybody so there are going to be changes all day to get it right and in the sweet spot. So far so good I’m pretty impressed with the power band and I think definitely an improvement from last year.”
Meanwhile at KVSH Racing, Sebastien Bourdais and the team discovered different issues compared to when they first ran together in November.
“It was an interesting day very different conditions than we had last time,” the Frenchman said. “Last time was really windy but the grip on the track was much higher so we discovered very different issues with the car. We have been fighting the car balance pretty big and then this morning we used the introduction of the new engine. We took it pretty easy so once we got going and discovered the problems we didn’t have so much time left and that was a bit of a crash course.”
Carlos Huertas, a Colombian testing for Panther Racing for the first time, fought through electrical gremlins on his first day in an IndyCar.
“It’s going okay, just getting used to the car is very different to what I’m used to in Europe,” said Huertas, who raced in Formula Renault 3.5 in 2013. “It went well on used tires and then on new tires just didn’t make the right changes. It didn’t improve as much as I wanted, but just in general (I was just) getting used to the way the engine with the turbo works and stuff like that.”
Bourdais is in action this week for Action Express Racing as part of the Rolex 24 at Daytona; Conway, a Toyota reserve driver in the FIA World Endurance Championship, will have that and the road and street races to look forward to this year; Huertas was in Sebring for his first test, but no word has been given by the Panther team regarding his status for any future outings.