Pleased with the results from having a limited group of drivers work Firestone rubber into second passing lanes at Texas Motor Speedway and World Wide Technology Raceway this year, the NTT IndyCar Series will continue and expand the practice at both ovals in 2023.
“We’re going to do that again at both tracks,” IndyCar president Jay Frye told RACER. “And we’ll do it with more cars.”
IndyCar’s first instance of running a special rubber-down session took place at Round 2 in Texas where six drivers spent time running above the low lane in the corners to apply rubber and increase grip in an effort to invite more passing attempts in and out of the corners.
The experiment had positive effects in the race and so it was repeated at Round 15 in Madison, Illinois, for the series’ visit to WWTR. IndyCar doubled the amount of cars in that session and saw similar gains. But in both instances, it was clear that having more cars on track would only improve drivers’ ability to try different lines in the corners.
“We won’t make those sessions mandatory,” Frye added. “But we’ll make it so everybody is eligible and we’ll split them into two groups, 15 minutes apiece. It helped a lot and we think this will make it even better.”