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Ultimative Indycar test driver thread


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#1 HistoryFan

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Posted 28 March 2008 - 14:04

Hello all!

There is a wonderful test driver thread here on TNF, and I think we could open a new test driver thread about CART/IRL/ChampCar/USAC/AAA test drivers.

For example: Ayrton Senna tested a Penske ChampCar in I think 1992 or 1993.
Tarso Marques testet for Payton Coyne in 1999.

Post more!!!

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#2 HistoryFan

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 14:37

No one?

#3 sramoa

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 15:10

I heard:a hungarian driver testing a car about 1995 but didn't have a money after didn't race.
The guy neme is Krisztián Antal.
Somebody know this story?Where,when tried Krisztián?

#4 sramoa

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 15:23

Yes!Senna tested in 1993 for Penske team...
Jean Alesi in 2002 tested a Nunn team car for CART,
Apicella in 1996(Arciero),
Brundle in 1993 and 1994 (TWR)
Tommy Byrne in 1992(Turley)
Emanuel Collard in 1998(Regency)
Eric Comas in 1996(Arciero) and in 1998(unknown)
Dalmas in 1993(Kuzma),1997 and 98(Scandia)
Davidson in 2002(Green) and 2005(Newman-Haas)
Fisichella in 1994(Euromotorsport)
Firman in 2004(Coyne)
Karthikeyan in 2005(Cheever)
Stefano Modena in 1998(Euromotorsport)
Montagny in 2006(Rocket)
Ratzenberger in 1992(Simon)
Rosset in 1996(Walker)
Scottie Speed in 2002(Rahal) and 2005(Cheever)
Verstappen in 2005(HVM)
Derek Warwick in 1992,94(Hall)
Wurz in 2005(Newman Haas)
Zonta in 2003(Newman-Haas)


#5 HistoryFan

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 19:25

Thank you very much!
Very interessting! :clap:

#6 Nigel Beresford

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 21:59

Yes!Senna tested in 1993 for Penske team...
Jean Alesi in 2002 tested a Nunn team car for CART,
Apicella in 1996(Arciero),
Brundle in 1993 and 1994 (TWR)
Tommy Byrne in 1992(Turley)
Emanuel Collard in 1998(Regency)
Eric Comas in 1996(Arciero) and in 1998(unknown)
Dalmas in 1993(Kuzma),1997 and 98(Scandia)
Davidson in 2002(Green) and 2005(Newman-Haas)
Fisichella in 1994(Euromotorsport)
Firman in 2004(Coyne)
Karthikeyan in 2005(Cheever)
Stefano Modena in 1998(Euromotorsport)
Montagny in 2006(Rocket)
Ratzenberger in 1992(Simon)
Rosset in 1996(Walker)
Scottie Speed in 2002(Rahal) and 2005(Cheever)
Verstappen in 2005(HVM)
Derek Warwick in 1992,94(Hall)
Wurz in 2005(Newman Haas)
Zonta in 2003(Newman-Haas)


Allan McNish drove a Penske-run 2002 Dallara Toyota test mule. This was a favour for Toyota.
Senna's run in the Penske wasn't so much a "test" (i.e. driver evaluation by the team) as a runout for him to satisfy his curiosity about how those cars felt, amid all the publicity about Mansell going to NHR.


#7 gbl

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Posted 26 August 2009 - 23:57

I just went a bit through my pictures and here are additional test run / car / driver combinations that did not appear in the season races (for every year including preseason testing):

1980
Kathy Rudy, Indianapolis (unknown)
1981
Joe Archeluta (Archeluta)
1984
Dr. Jonathan Palmer, Brands Hatch (Mayer Motor Racing)
1985
Michele Alboreto, Fiorano (Truesports)
Pete Halsmer (Kraco KC1-chassis)
1988
Jackie Stewart (Penske, TV documentary)
1989
Gary Brabham, Nurburgring (Porsche)
Jeremy Shaw, Nurburgring (Porsche)
1990
Tony DeTommaso (Euromotorsport)
Scott Pruett (Truesports)
1991
Bill Elliott (Ganassi)
1992
Gary Brabham (Dick Simon)
1994
Scott Pruett (Patrick)
Greg Moore (Penske)
1995
Russ Wicks (Euromotorsport)
1996
Bruce McCaw (Pacwest)
1997
Tom Kristensen (Bettenhausen)
Zak Brown (Project Indy)
1999
Lee Bentham (Arciero-Wells)
Bruce McCaw (Pacwest)
Felipe Giaffone (Pacwest)
JJ Lehto (Hogan)
Tarso Marques (Dale Coyne)
Oriol Servia (Pacwest)
Philipp Peter (Pacwest)
2000
Richie Hearn (Della Penna)
Tom Coronel (Della Penna)
Alex Zanardi (Mo Nunn)
Christian Danner (Arciero)
Ivan Capelli (Arciero)
2001
Max Wilson (Sigma)
Mario Dominguez (Bettenhausen)
Andre Couto (Dale Coyne)
AJ Allmendinger (Rahal)
Brett Buckwalter (Rahal)
Jonathan Bomarito (Rahal)
Jason Bowles (Rahal)
Kevin Christensen (Rahal)
Bryan Herta (Rahal)
Martin Basso (Dale Coyne)
Dan Wheldon (Demo run in Rockingham)
Nigel Mansell (Demo run in Rockingham)
Alex Barron (Dale Coyne, Lausitz + Rockingham)
Johnny Herbert (Dale Coyne, Rockingham)
2002
Scott Speed (Rahal)
Colin Fleming (Rahal)
Chris Carmody (Rahal)
Nicky Hayden (Green)
Mario Haberfeld (Walker)
Mario Andretti (Sigma, Promo in Chicago)
2003
Brian Sellers (Newman-Haas)
Luis Diaz (Fernandez)
Kurt Busch (Rahal)
Robbie Kerr (Patrick)
Nelson Philippe (Fittipaldi-Dingman)
Pierre Kaffer (Rahal)
2004
Bjorn Wirdheim (Patrick)
Tomas Enge (Dale Coyne)
Jonathan Macri (Walker)
Ryan Dalziel (Walker)
Timo Glock (Walker)
Michael Keohane (Dale Coyne)
David Besnard (PKV)
2005
Ryan Dalziel (PKV)
Bjorn Wirdheim (PKV)
Alex Figge (Forsythe, Conquest)
Romain Dumas (Conquest)
Andrew Ranger (Forsythe)
Andreas Wirth (Forsythe)
Jarek Janis (Forsythe)
Tonis Kasemets (Dale Coyne)
Marcus Marshall (Dale Coyne)
Bryan Sellers (Dale Coyne)
Christijan Albers (Walker)
Nicky Pastorelli (Walker)
Bruce Jouanny (Conquest)
Matt Halliday (Conquest)
Norbert Siedler (Walker)
Mario Haberfeld (Walker)
Jos Verstappen (HVM)
Mario Dominguez (HVM)
Roberto Gonzalez (HVM)
Rodolfo Lavin (Forsythe)
Roberto Moreno (HVM, Promo)
Luis Schiavo (Dale Coyne)
Milka Duno (HVM)
2006
Richard Philippe (Conquest, Forsythe)
Alx Danielsson (Conquest)
Dan Clarke (Conquest)
Tonis Kasemets (Conquest)
Jan Heylen (Conquest)
Ryan Dalziel (PKV)
Ryan Briscoe (PKV + Conquest)
Giorgio Pantano (PKV)
Franck Montagny (PKV)
Katherine Legge (Rocketsports)
Richard Lyons (Rocketsports)
James Hinchcliffle (Forsythe)
Enrique Bernoldi (Rocketsports)
Nicky Pastorelli (Dale Coyne)
Roberto Moreno (Panoz prototype)
Graham Rahal (Newman-Haas)
Enrico Toccacelo (Conquest)
2007
Alex Premat (Conquest)
Guillaume Moreau (Conquest)
Richard Philippe (Forsythe)
Lawson Aschenbach (Forsythe)
Stephen Simpson (Conquest)
Jay Howard (Forsythe)
Robert Doornbos (Forsythe)
Simon Pagenaud (Forsythe)
Gavin Cronje (Dale Coyne)
Nelson Philippe (Minardi)
Jimmy Vasser (PKV)
Mario Dominguez (Rusport)
Andreas Wirth (Dale Coyne)
Oriol Servia (Rusport)
Zsolt Baumgartner (Minardi)
James Winslow (Conquest)
Max Wilson (Walker, Promo in Bathurst)
Andreas Wirth (PKV, Promo in Assen)
2008
Carl Skerlong (PCM)
Franck Perera (Forsythe)
Dillon Battistini (Minardi)
Simon Pagenaud (Conquest)
David Martinez (PCM)
Alex Tagliani (PKV)
Enrique Bernoldi (Rocketsports)

#8 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 27 August 2009 - 05:53

I'm pretty sure Wurz and Davidson didn't test for Newman-Haas.

#9 Nigel Beresford

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Posted 27 August 2009 - 07:45

Romain Dumas did a one off test for Penske 2008 at (IIRC) Mid Ohio.

#10 # 0

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Posted 27 August 2009 - 15:31

Gee, Bill Elliott drove an Indycar? How'd he do?

#11 William Dale Jr

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Posted 27 August 2009 - 15:46

1994
Then-CEO of CART, Andrew Craig (Walker) @ Putnam Park

1997
Neil Crompton (Tasman) @ Mid Ohio

2000
Dave Darland, Russ Gamester, Jerry Coons Jr. (Panther) @ Texas Motor Speedway 3/24


#12 HistoryFan

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Posted 27 August 2009 - 16:02

Thank you guys for posting! :up:

#13 Disco Stu

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Posted 27 August 2009 - 16:39

Gee, Bill Elliott drove an Indycar? How'd he do?


It wasn't really a test, he just got a few laps after practice had ended at MIS one day. He was there for the IROC race that weekend. Only a few laps, but he got up to speed quickly. It was never designed to go any further than that though, just a few laps to see what it was like.

#14 gbl

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Posted 27 August 2009 - 16:45

http://www.artemisim.....=bill elliott

Year in caption is not correct.

#15 Shatterstar

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Posted 27 August 2009 - 16:50

Paul Tracy tested for Truesports in 1991.

#16 # 0

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Posted 27 August 2009 - 18:05

Dave Darland, Russ Gamester, Jerry Coons Jr. - who says Sprint to Indycar doesn't work?

#17 fbarrett

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Posted 27 August 2009 - 23:30

Friends:

You guys are all too modern! Somewhere I have a photo of one J.M. Fangio sitting in the ominously named "Cast-Iron Special" or something to that effect. Can't recall the year. He may have even tried to qualify it...

Frank

#18 TrackDog

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Posted 28 August 2009 - 00:41

Friends:

You guys are all too modern! Somewhere I have a photo of one J.M. Fangio sitting in the ominously named "Cast-Iron Special" or something to that effect. Can't recall the year. He may have even tried to qualify it...

Frank


That was the Dayton Steel Foundry Special, owned by George Walther. The year was 1958, and Fangio had problems with the car. His lap times were erratic, and he tried to tell the crew that there was something loose or broken in the chassis, because the car would periodically "pitch or yaw" in the turns, and no two laps were alike. His crew didn't believe him. After a nasty spin that nearly involved several other cars, Fangio left the ride. He briefly drove a Novi, but contractual issues with his personal sponsor BP, made it impossible for him to drive the car.

Mike Magill ended up driving the Dayton steel Foundry car in the race, but not until after complaining of the same things that Fangio did. At Magill's insistence, the car was torn down; and sure enough...there was a cracked frame rail, plain as day. Fangio had been right all along!



Dan


#19 Geza Sury

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Posted 28 August 2009 - 07:30

I heard:a hungarian driver testing a car about 1995 but didn't have a money after didn't race.
The guy neme is Krisztián Antal.
Somebody know this story?Where,when tried Krisztián?

I beleive he never drove an IndyCar. He might have tested an Indy Lights car, but I'm not 100% sure. He never raced in either category, though. I would have to dug up my old magazines to find something...

Edit: he has his own website under http://krisztianantal.com. It doesn't say anything about his racing activities, and there are no IndyCar or Indy Lights pictures in the gallery section either.

Edited by Geza Sury, 28 August 2009 - 07:37.


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#20 sramoa

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Posted 28 August 2009 - 08:36

Thanks Géza your correction!Until this time I didn't found info for Krisztián,only heard this story...

more test drivers:
1988
Mario Andretti(Porsche)
Scott Brayton(Protofab)
Wally Dallenbach(Foyt)
Fangio(Kuzma)
Giuppone Franca and Edson de Gobi(GF)
Scott Goodyear(unknown)
Al Holbert(Porsche)
Phil Krueger(Porsche)
Chip Robinson(Porsche)
Jeff Wood(unknown)

#21 William Dale Jr

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Posted 28 August 2009 - 12:36

Dave Darland, Russ Gamester, Jerry Coons Jr. - who says Sprint to Indycar doesn't work?


The ESPN story on the test is on YouTube, here:
I guess it ultimately came to nothing, Coons Jr and Darland are still racing midgets, aren't they?


Another one for the list:

1988
Geoff Bodine (Dick Simon) @ Michigan International Speedway. His run happened the morning of that year's Michigan IROC race. Apparently he wasn't too shabby, settling into 200mph+ laps quite quickly.

Edited by William Dale Jr, 28 August 2009 - 12:37.


#22 sramoa

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Posted 28 August 2009 - 14:33

Tony Turco in 1989(Trout) and 1996(Cincinnati)
Cory Witherill 2002/3 Hemelgarn
Andreas Wirth 2005 Forsythe
Björn Wirdheim in 2005 tested Kalkhoven,Coyne and tested and raced HVM
Pat Abold in 1996 a PDM

and more PDM tester:
Cary Faas(1997)
Jack Hewitt(1997) but he raced in 1998
Andy Hillenburg(1997)
Jim Keeker(1997)
Darrin Miller(1997)
Jack Miller(1997)
Mike Muldoon(1997)
Jeret Schroeder(1997)
David Steele(1996)
Russ Wicks(1997)

#23 Nigel Beresford

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Posted 28 August 2009 - 18:40

NASCAR driver Jimmy Spencer drove a Ganassi Lola Toyota at Sebring in 2001.

How can one convey to those who have never seen JS on TV how ridiculous that seems?

#24 RA Historian

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Posted 28 August 2009 - 19:16

Dave Darland, Russ Gamester, Jerry Coons Jr. - who says Sprint to Indycar doesn't work?

Maybe I misunderstood the intent of your post, but I don't think those three are in Indycar ........

In fact, I can say that I have never even heard of the last two!

Tom

#25 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 28 August 2009 - 19:26

NASCAR driver Jimmy Spencer drove a Ganassi Lola Toyota at Sebring in 2001.



That's definitely pushing the limits of 'drove' :lol:

#26 HistoryFan

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Posted 28 August 2009 - 19:47

Friends:

You guys are all too modern! Somewhere I have a photo of one J.M. Fangio sitting in the ominously named "Cast-Iron Special" or something to that effect. Can't recall the year. He may have even tried to qualify it...

Frank


Okay, more older!


#27 # 0

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Posted 29 August 2009 - 12:07

Maybe I misunderstood the intent of your post, but I don't think those three are in Indycar ........

But they at least tested. Some people are adamant that sprint car drivers never get a chance at Indy anymore.

I don't think I had an intention with my post, I was just surprised to see the names mentioned. I missed that when it happened.

#28 HistoryFan

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Posted 04 June 2013 - 10:32

More drivers who testet for Dale Coyne?