Scott Dixon admits the transition from daylight to darkness at the Texas Motor Speedway could be an issue as drivers adjust to the aeroscreen.
The cockpit protection device is new for the 2020 IndyCar season, with drivers initially receiving time to get accustomed to the screen earlier this year at open testing in Austin, Texas.
However, it is yet to make its official race debut following the delay to the 2020 campaign, caused by the coronavirus pandemic. This weekend’s season opener in the IndyCar championship takes place over the course of one day, with two and a half hours of practice preceding qualifying and the race.
While testing took place on ovals with the aeroscreen attached to the car in 2019, Dixon says the natural lighting situation in Texas “may be an issue” this weekend.
“I think with some of the testing that we had done even at Indianapolis, Richmond, then a bunch in the road course kind of platform, I think the unknowns are we’ve never really run at night with the aeroscreen,” Dixon said.
“They moved the race starting time up by an hour so you’re going to have that transition from the light. It could be a bit of an issue.”
Dixon hopes that matter won’t become much of a problem, as he stated at the open test at the Circuit of the Americas earlier this year, there were modifications that could be made to help with the reflection of the sun.
“Honestly, some of those things we kind of witnessed a little bit of that at COTA when the practice session ended quite late. There were some pieces that you could kind of put on the screen to help with some of the reflection. That was better.
“We’ve had plenty of miles, albeit on road courses, earlier in the season. Yeah, it’s going to take a few laps for everybody to get used to it at Texas, getting back going. I think it’s more the downtime that we’ve all had, it will take a few laps to get up to speed.”
Many of the drivers also were able to gain some knowledge of the aeroscreen during the iRacing IndyCar challenge – however, learning was limited due to its 2D display.
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