IndyCar test at COTA reveals massive gap with F1


Three IndyCar teams spent Monday testing at the Circuit of the Americas where the series will race for the very first time in March of next year.

Tony Kanaan for A.J. Foyt Racing, RC Enerson for Carlin and Andretti Autosport's Alexander Rossi all trialed the Austin circuit, praising COTA's layout, as they put various Firestone tyre compounds through their paces.

With Formula 1 having visited the venue earlier this month, comparing the performance over a single lap between the series' respective machinery was a tempting although rather futile exercise.

Rossi's unofficial fastest lap was 1m47.8s, or over 15 seconds slower than Lewis Hamilton's US Grand Prix's pole position, achieved in 1m32.237s.

Beyond the unsurprising performance gap, the 2016 Indy 500 winner, who raced in F1 in 2015 with Marussia, was full of praise for COTA.

"I can tell you that our car around that track is awesome! I had a smile on my face for the entire 90 laps and the package is great," Rossi told

"It’s challenging, it’s technical, but there’s also a lot of high-speed corners. It’s a perfect circuit for us.

"From Turn 1 to Turn 9 is just mega. The first bit of it is pretty close to flat and each one subsequently gets tighter so you kind of decelerate as you go through them and if you’re a little bit off on the first one, you pay a big penalty six corners later! So it’s definitely a drivers’ track."


While enthusiastic after his run at the Texas track, Rossi stopped short of offering any sort of compare between IndyCar and F1.

"In 2015 in the Marussia, the whole time it was wet!" he recalled.

"And in 2013 driving for Caterham as test driver I did one free practice in the dry. But I honestly don’t remember too much about that."

Foyt's Tony Kanaan echoed his colleague's keenness, believing IndyCar will offer its fans a great show in Austin next year.

"It’s a road course, so I don’t want to give the wrong impression that we will always be passing there, but there are two places that will be easier to pass and some others to try," he said.

"And I think our racing will be exciting because there’s less discrepancy on lap times with our grid, and 20 cars have a chance to win the race."

For a glimpse of what COTA looks like onboard an IndyCar, take a lap around the Austin track with A.J. Foyt Racing's Tony Kanaan.

Gallery: The beautiful wives and girlfriends of F1 drivers

Keep up to date with all the F1 news via Facebook and Twitter