AJ Foyt Racing’s Sebastien Bourdais, driver of the No.14 ROKiT Chevrolet says that the tire evolution this weekend in Detroit will be just as challenging as working with the aeroscreen on the bumpy street circuit.

Speaking to Paddock Eye during a conference call on Monday the Frenchman said:

Yeah, no, I think like Graham was saying, setup-wise obviously you adjust the car whichever way. I think the tire evolution is probably just as challenging as the aeroscreen, the way you use the tire. Firestone is coming up with small variations and things, mixing things up because some chemicals get banned, whatever else. At the end of the day there’s not a weekend that resembles the other. That’s why when you look at the gaps, as tight as the field is, a tiny little difference, then it shuffles the whole order. You’re talking about a 10th, two or three maximum, and you’re at the front or the back of the pack and your weekend looks very, very different.

There are some very, very key moments in the weekend that make it a great or good or a bad or terrible one (smiling). I think you just have to be open-minded, you have to get a look at optimizing everything. You know if you don’t execute, then it’s not going to be a fun experience.

The aeroscreen safety-wise, particularly for the ovals and the superspeedways, just a single biggest investment for sure is concerned as far as safety is concerned. For me for sure on the street courses I sometimes wish the screen wasn’t there because I feel like it’s making things extremely difficult and uncomfortable in the car. I think it’s just one very tough compromise, right? You just add that big safety piece on an existing car that really wasn’t designed for anything like this, how you manage the airflow and everything around.

For sure when it gets hot and humid, particularly on street courses, the body temperature inside the 120 degree cockpit gets pretty critical. Yeah, it’s never really a fun last 10, 15 laps of those races. Doing it twice in a weekend, I think that dehydration level is going to be tough. Probably not the best suited for that because I don’t deal super, super well with dehydration.

But it is the challenge, that’s for everybody. We’ll just have to add it to the numerous list that composes Detroit, I guess.

Share This