Kevin Magnussen logged 136 laps in his first NTT IndyCar Series test with Chip Ganassi Racing on Monday at Sebring’s short course. Tasked with working through a long list of chassis setup items, the Dane’s mission was a success according to CGR managing director Mike Hull.
“We had a great day today here at Sebring with Kevin,” Hull said. “Driving our Indy car is something we’ve wanted to do for a long time with him; we just haven’t been able to put our respective calendars together, but finally got it done. He did a terrific job in the car.”
Magnussen drove Alex Palou’s No. 10 Honda as part of an IndyCar evaluation test day that gives teams a chance to sample a new driver without using one of the limited number of test days given to full-time drivers. Known for his blinding speed and aggressive racing style, the team has seen Magnussen’s race day capabilities demonstrated in its Cadillac DPi-V.R. With Monday’s testing emphasis placed on feedback rather than setting track records, his technical skills were sampled in an open-wheel environment for the first time with his former employer.
“It’s always great to drive an IndyCar; it’s a real beast of a race car on this track as well,” Magnussen said. “Sebring doesn’t get much wilder, so I really enjoyed it. And I’ve been looking forward driving Ganassi’s IndyCar. I’ve driven another IndyCar before it, but great to get this opportunity and we really got a lot of testing done today. A lot of different things. Got some data on a lot of stuff. So that was the main aim for the day.”
Magnussen spent 2021 as one of Ganassi’s full-time IMSA drivers and stepped in to drive for Arrow McLaren SP’s Felix Rosenqvist at Road America while the Swede recovered from the crash he suffered at Detroit. Shortly after he started the IMSA season with Cadillac Chip Ganassi Racing, Magnussen announced he’d signed to drive for the new Peugeot FIA World Endurance Championship Hypercar team in 2022 which signaled his intent to return home and race in Europe.
Could Magnussen be up for another American run — this time with CGR’s IndyCar outfit — once he’s done with Peugeot?
“We appreciate very, very much the fact that he’s been allowed to test the car today for us,” Hull said. “And we’ll see what happens next.”