Friday’s NTT IndyCar Series test at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca will take place with the first of a three-part circuit upgrade plan in position.
Outlined in the agreement between the series and the Monterey County-owned road course, numerous safety updates are required to be completed prior to the season-ending IndyCar race on September 20-22. Ahead of this week’s test where 23 cars are expected, the facility managed by the Sports Car Racing Association of the Monterey Peninsula (SCRAMP) has improved debris fencing at Turns 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 10. In those locations, additional steel cables have been affixed to the fences, and the cables have been secured to every pole.
Atop the Corkscrew, two more rows of tire bales have been added to create more cushioning and deceleration in the event of a head-on impact, and all of the circuit’s drainage ditches will be covered before the field of Chevy- and Honda-powered Dallara DW12s enter the 2.2-mile course.
Between the conclusion of the test and the race, secondary curbing will be installed at Turn 7 entering the Corkscrew, and at Turn 8 — the Corkscrew’s apex. All of the secondary ‘sausage’ curbing will have softer tapers to their leading edges.
Two-deep stacks of tire bales will be added at Turns 3, 5, 6, and 11, and more areas, if needed, and a number of corner marshal’s posts will be repositioned and raised.
The final phase of updates could come in the form of resurfacing the worn circuit as early as 2020. Subject to approval by Monterey County’s board of supervisors, resurfacing WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca has been a longstanding goal for SCRAMP.