Sebastien Bourdais said he was happy with how his first test with AJ Foyt Racing went at Circuit of the Americas in Austin Texas earlier this week.
The four time CART champion has joined AJ Foyt Racing for four races during the 2020 NTT IndyCar Series season after losing his drive with Dale Coyne with Vasser Sullivan Racing.
Speaking following the test, Bourdais who will share the No.14 Chevrolet with Tony Kanaan and Dalton Kellett said:
“It was a good start for sure. “I’m quite pleased with the way the team operates and the interaction with the engineers. The baseline was a mix of a lot of different ideas and philosophies and you’re always kind of like, ‘Well, I guess we’ll see how it shakes out,’ but yeah, I’m pretty pleased with the way the baseline rolled out. The conditions were a bit tricky and challenging and evolving so it’s always tough to evaluate changes but the team did a good job overall.
Bourdais is joined in the No.14 Chevrolet by NTT IndyCar Series rookie Dalton Kellett who said:
It was a great experience and a great opportunity to drive here for my first Chevrolet Indy car test. “I can’t thank the AJ Foyt Racing team enough and we’re all looking forward to a great season. We’re sharing the car with Seb so we didn’t get a lot of time in the car but nonetheless got out, didn’t make any mistakes, didn’t put the car off track and slowly built up to speed. Seb showed earlier today that the car’s definitely got good pace in it. It felt really drivable, loved the setup and think we have something really great to work from so I can’t wait for the next time I’ll be strapping in.”
Kellet who makes his NTT IndyCar Series debut with Foyt said”
It was a great experience and a great opportunity to drive here for my first Chevrolet Indy car test. “I can’t thank the AJ Foyt Racing team enough and we’re all looking forward to a great season. We’re sharing the car with Seb so we didn’t get a lot of time in the car but nonetheless got out, didn’t make any mistakes, didn’t put the car off track and slowly built up to speed. Seb showed earlier today that the car’s definitely got good pace in it. It felt really drivable, loved the setup and think we have something really great to work from so I can’t wait for the next time I’ll be strapping in.
Kellett was asked if he thought the test met his expectations the 26 year old Canadian said:
“It was everything I thought it would be and maybe a little bit more. “Coming from Indy Lights, this car just handles a lot better, more power, more downforce, it was definitely exhilarating and a lot of fun. The Firestone tires were great, they have so much grip, even when they’re cold, they come up to temp really nice, all around a more drivable car.”
Charlie Kimball will compete in all 17 rounds of the 2020 season including the 104th running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge and speaking about his test in the No.4 Tresiba Chevrolet the Californian said:
I’m really happy with my first day in the No. 4 car. “There are a lot of
things that are new, the aeroscreen, the personnel, new number, new track for me, so being able to come in, despite the challenges that Mother Nature threw at us, and get a lot of laps in and run problem-free from the drop of the green has been really encouraging. Working with the AJ Foyt Racing crew has been a lot of fun from the race shop, getting fitted in the car to the race track itself. Everyone seems especially hungry this year to make sure the results equal the effort that’s being put in because it’s obvious they’re putting in a lot of effort behind the scenes. So I’m excited, I’m invigorated and looking forward to every race this year. There’s still work to do but I don’t think any of us are afraid of hard work.
Charlie Kimbill and Sebastien Bourdais who start the season in the No.4 and No.14 Chevrolet respectively spoke about the aeroscreen with Bourdais saying:
No particular complaints at all, you just have to get accustomed to the new environment. We ran somewhat in the wet, a tiny bit, (there were) projections of your dirtying up the screen when you follow someone but it seemed under control, so no major complaints. Obviously it is very cold today so it was actually not a bad thing that it was warmer than usual inside the car.”
Charlie Kimball said:
I think there are still some cooling issues to work through. It is not particularly warm today but at the same time, I didn’t have any vision issues and, it’s a lot quieter in the car. There is a lot less wind noise, and I think the radio is clearer, so if we can figure out how to stay cool on a really hot day, we’ll be in good shape. Even with the puddles and the dirt and all the other stuff that’s been on the aeroscreen today, I haven’t felt like I lost any significant vision.”
Dalton Kellett’s first race will be the AutoNation IndyCar Challenge at the Circuit of the Americas in Austin Texas on April 26.
AJ Foyt Racing have scheduled a further pre season test at Sebring International Raceway in early March ahead of the season opening Firestone Grand Prix of St Petersburg which takes place from March 13 to 15.
Tony Kanaan who is competing in the five oval races this year as part of #TKLastLap will test the No.14 Chevrolet at Richmond Raceway on March 25 during a full field test.