What is the solution for Phoenix’s lack of passing?

A reader writes, Dear AR1.com, After seeing the recent test at Phoenix with the revised IndyCar, I came away convinced there will be very little passing during the race in April. Is there a fix? Gene Murphy

Dear Gene, The issue is that with the tire marbles the 2nd groove never comes in and the track is inherently a one groove track. Some have proposed dragging tires around before the weekend to lay rubber down in the 2nd groove. That won't work very well. The real solution is to spray the surface with PJ1 Track Bite Traction Compound.

PJI Trackbite sprayer being used on NASCAR Track
PJI Trackbite sprayer being used on NASCAR Track

PJ1 TrackBite, formerly known as VHT TrackBite or simply VHT, is a custom formulated resin, typically black in color, used in drag racing to either increase the traction of a car's tires or as a sealer for newly ground and/or resurfaced race tracks.[1] It stays sticky for weeks, has fire-retardant properties and is hydrophobic. It is generally sprayed onto the track. It has been used in professional racing since 1972. With the help of Trackbite, a normal street surface can be prepped so well a drag car can lift the front wheels off the ground.

It can also be sprayed from specialized VHT spraying tanks. The TrackBite that the NHRA uses, commercial "VHT TRACKBITE CONCENTRATE" is yellowish in color and per NHRA regulations is diluted with methanol for optimum effect. Trackbite contains no petroleum distillates and is biodegradable when dry.

Oval tracks also use Trackbite to provide extra traction in the corners of what would otherwise be a "one groove racetrack". Its use was prohibited by NASCAR in 2010 to reduce the amount of chemicals used at its events. However, it has been used at several tracks hosting Nascar's top series (Cup, Xfinity, Trucks) during the 2017 racing season with great results. Mark C.

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