Dale Coyne Racing with Rick Ware Racing’s Romain Grosjean made his NTT IndyCar Series oval debut at World Wide Technology Raceway on Tuesday alongside other drivers in the series, completing 166 laps as the Frenchman prepares to make his oval race debut in the Bommarito Automotive Group 500 which takes place August 21.
Speaking following his time in the car, Grosjean said:
“Today was pretty good. It was my first time on an oval and it’s very, very different from everything I’ve done before. So, obviously, there’s a lot for me to learn on ovals, from the feel of the car, to how to go fast to the feeling of knowing what I need in the car. I want to say that everyone that thinks driving on an oval is easy, is getting it completely wrong! It’s actually very tough, and special, but I had a lot of fun.
The Frenchman was delighted with the progress that the team made over the course of the test as they accomplished everything that they set out to do and he concluded by saying:
“We went through the day and gathered a lot of information. In that aspect it was super positive. We worked well and we learned that we could extract more performance from the car which is great. At the end of the day, on the last, long run the car felt very nice and I was happy with it. I think that was key for us today, getting some key data, getting me comfortable in the car and being able to attack on a long run. Now we can put it all together when we come back in a few weeks for my first oval race. I’m really looking forward to it.”
While there was a lot for him to learn throughout the day, Grosjean had a successful test. His fastest lap time of 25.3625 seconds was less than half of a second behind the best lap of the day and quicker than oval veterans Sebastien Bourdais and Ed Carpenter.