The fourth and final Aeroscreen test ahead of 2020 concluded on Tuesday, with McLaren and Dale Coyne Racing testing at Sebring.
To simulate a street circuit environment for the final Aeroscreen test ahead of mandatory introduction in 2020, two teams showed up at Sebring in Florida to conclude the device’s development.
Arrow McLaren attended with Patricio O’Ward making his first appearance with the team; James Hinchcliffe having been originally scheduled to carry out the test before last week’s announcement that he has been released from SPM after the McLaren linkup. The team took the opportunity to build some hype about their potential livery by running an interim camouflage paint scheme on their car.
Dale Coyne Racing, who hadn’t run the Aeroscreen yet either, ran with Sebastien Bourdais and Santino Ferrucci both getting a chance to sample the Aeroscreen.
The purpose of the test was to see how the Aeroscreen handled use on a much bumpier surface, as well as air circulation and cooling for the drivers in the humid Florida heat. It also gave the opportunity of trialing the anti-fog mechanism that’s been built into the device.
“You can barely tell the screen is there because it’s pretty clear,” O’Ward said after his day. “Obviously, it’s a bit more enclosed, but you see everything you usually see. The eyes kind of look around the halo, so you don’t really notice it. Once you’re pushing, you don’t really see the Aeroscreen.”
Thoughts on aeroscreen.. Looks cool? certain angles, yes. Hot in there? VERY. Air circulation inside improving? Yes, but still yet to find a solution for the helmet visor opening. All in all, huge step in driver safety! Great job @IndyCar looking forward to the #2020 season! pic.twitter.com/a2BqMJTT3d
— Pato O'Ward (@PatricioOWard) November 6, 2019
Both Dale Coyne Racing drivers Sebastien Bourdais and Santino Ferrucci also reported no visibility problems with the Aeroscreen.
IndyCar have thus concluded their four test programme of the Aeroscreen, which will run on all cars from the start of 2020. Developed by Red Bull Technologies, the Aeroscreen has been tested on a Superspeedway, a road course, an oval and a street circuit environment over the last two months – all meeting with success.
Having experimented with different cooling ideas, IndyCar will offer the drivers spec options at each venue. Bill Pappas, IndyCar’s vice president of competition and engineering said: “These will be areas with specific parts. “Teams won’t be free to develop their own ductwork.”
— Arrow McLaren SP (@ArrowMcLarenSP) November 6, 2019