Archive for March 16, 2015

H-Coyne

PLAINFIELD, Illinois – Dale Coyne Racing is excited to announce the 2015 return of Carlos Huertas who will drive the #18 Honda powered car for a second consecutive season.

Huertas participated in his rookie Verizon IndyCar Series season in 2014 and impressed with his consistent showings. He took his first and Dale Coyne Racing’s fourth IndyCar win in round one of June’s Houston race. This victory, his consistently fast pace, and his keen sense to avoid race ending contact served as the primary reasons Coyne sought his return for 2015.

Previous to his Verizon IndyCar career, Huertas raced in top development series in Europe earning wins in the Formula Renault 3.5 Series and British Formula Three Series.

“Carlos surprised everyone last year with his performance. The effort the team has made over the winter, as shown by our Sebring test with Carlos, gives us confidence for the upcoming season,” commented team owner Dale Coyne.

Adding to Huertas’ confidence from last season’s successes, Huertas posted the fastest time of any Verizon IndyCar Series driver that tested at Sebring this offseason. This fast time was recorded on February 24th, the second of two days of DCR testing.

“I am very happy to be back with the team this year. I expect to have a better year than last year because I obviously have the experience of a full season and winning a race last year. That helped a lot for my confidence for this year.” Huertas continued, “The guys did such a great job last year with the car and race strategy that I’m sure we will have a successful year.”

After IndyCar’s “spring training” test at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Alabama, Dale Coyne Racing and Carlos Huertas will continue to test the new Honda HPD aero kit equipped cars March 23 and 24 at NOLA Motorsports Park in Avondale, Louisiana. The team will kick off competitive action on March 29 in St. Petersburg, Florida for the 2015 Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg.

Dracone

PLAINFIELD, Illinois – Dale Coyne Racing has firmed up its early 2015 Verizon IndyCar plans with the signing of veteran open wheel driver Francesco Dracone. He will drive the #19 Honda for DCR in the first four rounds of the season with further plans undetermined at this time.

Dracone makes his return to the Verizon IndyCar Series having previously participated in the series with Conquest Racing in 2010. He has since been driving in the Auto GP Series in Europe. Dracone also tested with Coyne in December 2013. The Italian brings 13 years of open wheel racing experience to Dale Coyne Racing and should bring a unique perspective to the new Honda aero kit making its debut in 2015.

While trying to control his excitement Dracone said, “It is good to be back in America and great to be back in IndyCar. I feel that it is the best single seater series for a driver to be in.” He continued, “Working with Dale Coyne is an honor and a privilege because he is one of the most experienced team owners and he runs a great team.”

“Francesco shows great enthusiasm for our sport,” said Dale Coyne. “We look forward to working with the rookie in preseason testing and early races as he looks to IndyCar for his future.”

With his only competitive IndyCar starts being in the previous generation car, having several days of testing in the DW12 chassis will be invaluable. The team will test with him two additional days after the 2015 Barber Open Test.

After IndyCar’s “spring training” test at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Alabama, Dale Coyne Racing, with Dracone at the wheel, will continue to test on March 23 and 24 at NOLA Motorsports Park in Avondale, Louisiana. The team will kick off competitive action on March 29 in St. Petersburg, Florida for the 2015 Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg.

Honda_Pano_Pre_Final-16880474

Honda 2015 IndyCar Series Aero Kits

  • Road Course/Short Oval package shown
  • Efficient development utilized CFD and multiple simulation tools
  • Wide range of aerodynamic tuning options available to teams

TORRANCE, Calif. (March 9, 2015) – Honda today debuted the package of aerodynamic upgrades and components its teams will use in the 2015 Verizon IndyCar Series, as the manufacturer seeks to add to an already impressive list of accomplishments in American open-wheel racing.

The 2015 Honda Indy car “aero kit”, produced by Honda Performance Development, Honda’s racing arm in North America, includes nearly 200 individual pieces that can be fitted to the existing Honda-powered Dallara Indy car chassis.  All are intended to give Honda’s six IndyCar Series teams the ability to maximize performance at each of the 15 circuits that make up the 2015 championship schedule.

“We’re excited to reveal our aero kits as Honda welcomes this era of enhanced competition in the Verizon IndyCar Series,” said Art St. Cyr, president of HPD and vice president, auto operations, for American Honda.  “Coupled to our proven Honda Indy V6 engines, these aero kits are the products of literally thousands of hours of research, development and testing, as we seek to give our drivers and teams the tools they need to win races, the Indianapolis 500 and the IndyCar Series championship.”

Following in the proven path of the successful Honda-powered prototype sports racers – winners of 74 American Le Mans Series, TUDOR United SportsCar Championship and World Endurance Championship races and multiple titles since 2007 – the Honda Indy car aero kits were developed by utilizing the latest in Computer-Aided Design (CAD) and Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) technology.

Concepts for the Honda aero kit were validated using Driver-In-Loop (DIL) Simulators, minimizing waste at the prototype stage and allowing aerodynamic direction to be determined prior to the creation of full-size components.

Components were then tested in a full-scale wind tunnel to confirm actual aerodynamic performance characteristics, and create aero maps to be used during on-track testing.  Final proof-of-concept correlation then took place in a series of on-track tests, totaling six days at various circuits, conducted by HPD with the assistance of the Honda-powered Andretti Autosport team.

The complete kit provides Honda drivers and teams with a significant range of available configurations to tune the cars to their desired characteristics and provide additional visual variety to engage fans at all IndyCar Series circuits.

In addition to improving performance, aerodynamic safety was a primary consideration in aero kit development.  Working with INDYCAR, Honda has a well-established record of utilizing its development resources to produce a safer racing environment, including the design and development of the fuel safety interlock system, now standard on all Indy cars, and more recently the 2015 chassis floor and other future safety developments to be fitted to the Dallara chassis.

“We’ve been encouraged by the performance of the new Honda aero kits in testing, but of course the end goal is to win races, the Indy 500 and the championship,” said St. Cyr. “We believe we have a superior aerodynamic and engine package.  We’re looking forward to the start of the 2015 season on the streets of St. Petersburg, and taking on the battle for the Manufacturers’ Championship.”

Honda’s Indy car aero kits will make their public debut next week at the Verizon IndyCar Series “Open Test”, March 16-17 at Barber Motorsports Park near Birmingham, Alabama.  The 2015 season opens March 29 with the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg, Florida.

About Honda Performance Development

HPD was founded in 1993 to spearhead Honda’s entry into Indy car racing.  No other manufacturer has matched Honda’s success in Indy cars, which includes 211 race victories, 15 drivers’ championships, six competitive manufacturers’ championships and 10 Indianapolis 500 victories since 2004, including the 2014 event won by Ryan Hunter-Reay of Andretti Autosport. 

HPD and Honda have a history of success in the classic endurance sports car races, including a pair of LMP2 wins and a privateer LMP1 victory at the 24 Hours of Le Mans since 2010; as well as multiple American Le Mans Series championships and five LMP2 class victories at the 12 Hours of Sebring since 2007.  HPD’s Honda engines have recorded 74 race wins at endurance sports car races around the world, with 70 of those victories coming in the HPD-developed line of sports prototype cars.

HPD offers a complete line of race engines for cars from grass roots to pinnacle; for professional, amateur and entry-level racers. For more information about HPD and the company’s racing product lines, please visit http://hpd.honda.com 

Data and Images courtesy of Honda Performance Development

Ryan Hunter-Reay video courtesy of Racer.com