IndyCar drivers still adjusting to double-file restarts
Row alignment didn't happen on the double-file restarts at last weekend's Izod IndyCar Series race in Long Beach, Calif., and former champion Al Unser Jr. blames the drivers.
Unser said it's clear the drivers wanted no part of a double-file start or restarts on the narrow and generally congested street circuit. The field never bunched up, as series officials instructed.
"I think the drivers took it into their own hands," said Unser, a consultant in IndyCar's competition department. "They started a little bit sooner than even what we did in past Long Beach starts.
"We used to get four rows off (the hairpin) before we started, and they weren't havin' none of that, and I thought it looked bad, to be honest."
Yet officials waved the green flag. Another problem was drivers lagging to get a run on others.
The solution figures to be standing starts when IndyCar debuts new equipment in 2012.
Tony Kanaan, one of three driver representatives to IndyCar, said moving the restart zone back to 600 feet -- it was 200 feet in the season-opening street race at St. Petersburg, Fla. -- was a factor.
"The only way to judge it is when we actually did the starts and restarts, and we don't do that until race time," he said. "I think we kind of misjudged it."
A similar hairpin exists at next week's street race in Sao Paulo, Brazil, but Unser said there is enough distance between that corner and the flagstand to align the cars properly. Indy Star