Goodyear completes Indy tire test A total of 14 NASCAR Sprint Cup teams descended on Indianapolis Motor Speedway this week to perform a tire test for The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company. The two-day test, held Tuesday and Wednesday, saw teams run more than 2,000 laps as they gathered the data that the Goodyear engineers will use to determine the tire recommendation for this year's Brickyard 400, to be held at the Speedway on July 25. While Goodyear tested several new set-ups, the early opinion is that the tire manufacturer will return in 2010 with the same, or very similar, combination to that run successfully at the Speedway in 2009.
"We still have to review the results and go over the data in detail before our decision is finalized, but we found our control tire set-up, which was the 2009 race tire, still performs very well and is a very comfortable package," said Greg Stucker, Goodyear's director of race tire sales. "We saw some definite improvements with various elements of the development tires we evaluated during the test, but we didn't have clear consensus from the drivers on which change would be a sure improvement over the control. It's important to maintain the proper balance with the overall race package for all the cars in the field."
"We had nearly perfect weather conditions, with temperatures in the upper 60s to low 70s and a lot of sunshine," said Stucker "The track really rubbered in well, and we seemed to pick up right where we left off last year. The change from the wing to the spoiler on the Cup cars didn't seem to significantly change the way the tires performed on the track." The 14 teams had a busy week leading up to the test. Sunday's scheduled race was delayed until Monday due to rain in Texas, compacting everyone's schedule and making it tougher to pull together.
Participating in the test were #00-David Reutimann, #7-Robby Gordon, #9-Kasey Kahne, #12-Brad Keselowski, #13-Max Papis), #14-Tony Stewart, #17-Matt Kenseth, #18-Kyle Busch, #29-Kevin Harvick, #38-David Gilliland, #42-Juan Pablo Montoya, #48-Jimmie Johnson, #78-Regan Smith and #82-Scott Speed. Johnson, Kenseth, Montoya and Stewart served as the primary test drivers, with the balance of the field on hand to help replicate race conditions and rubber in the track.
"We really need to thank the 14 teams that came out to help us with this test," added Stucker. "With last week's race at Texas being pushed back a day, it was a real scramble for everyone to get to Indy by the time we opened up on Tuesday morning. It goes to show you the hard work and dedication of these teams."
Goodyear will continue with a busy testing schedule in the coming months, having on-track sessions scheduled for Watkins Glen International (June 1-2), Atlanta Motor Speedway (June 15-16) and Bristol Motor Speedway (June 22-23). Goodyear PR
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