Power: IndyCar drivers hiding struggles behind downforce concerns

Will Power believes concerns over IndyCar's 2018 machine on ovals are "normal" because drivers calling for higher downforce levels are trying to hide their weaknesses

Power: IndyCar drivers hiding struggles behind downforce concerns

Power took pole for last weekend's short oval race at Iowa, more than a month after winning his first Indianapolis 500.

The build up to the 500 featured concerns over how the car would race on the Indianapolis oval, and debate over downforce levels has since continued.

Downforce tweaks have also been suggested for road courses such as Road America, with Scott Dixon outlining that front wing adjustments could further improve racing.

But Power believes downforce is an excuse.

"That's pretty normal [complaints about downforce]," he said. "When people struggle they always go into panic mode.

"They want a Band-Aid, and downforce is the Band-Aid to make everything feel real good."

His team-mate Josef Newgarden argued the current aerodynamic set-up has benefits.

"I actually think the car is a lot easier to save now," he said. "If the car gets sideways, it gives you way more warning.

"With the old car you'd stretch the string and it would snap immediately all of a sudden. This thing you can stretch it way out and it gives you a lot more warning when it's starting to get out there.

"It's really easy, I think, to drive this car sideways compared to the old one, but that also makes you busier.

"If you're not a driver who's comfortable doing that, then yes, it can be a more uncomfortable car to drive.

"But if you like the car being sideways, I think it gives you a lot more warning with what it's doing."

Power also explained that radio communication problems were the reason he fell from a dominant pole position at Iowa to sixth.

The 2014 IndyCar champion was quickly deposed from the lead by fellow front row starter Newgarden before he dropped further places at the end of the first stint.

"I think we lost a lot of ground in the first stint because there was something going on with the radio," he said.

"The team called me in for three laps and I just didn't hear it.

"Unfortunately, we lost a lot of positions and went backwards at that point."

shares
comments
Hinchliffe made 'tough' IndyCar Iowa tyre call in worst-case scenario
Previous article

Hinchliffe made 'tough' IndyCar Iowa tyre call in worst-case scenario

Next article

Harding IndyCar team replaces Chaves with Daly for Toronto round

Harding IndyCar team replaces Chaves with Daly for Toronto round
How Ericsson achieved Indy immortality as Ganassi's main man stumbled Plus

How Ericsson achieved Indy immortality as Ganassi's main man stumbled

Chip Ganassi Racing team was strong again in the Indianapolis 500, with poleman Scott Dixon and reigning champion Alex Palou leading almost three quarters of the race between them. But when dominator Dixon was penalised for pitlane speeding, ex-Formula 1 driver Marcus Ericsson stepped up to score the biggest win of his career and seize the IndyCar points lead

IndyCar
May 30, 2022
Ranking the top 10 IndyCar drivers of 2021 Plus

Ranking the top 10 IndyCar drivers of 2021

In an enthralling 2021 IndyCar campaign, the series bounced back from its COVID-19 truncated year prior and Alex Palou defeated both the established order and his fellow young guns to clinch a maiden title. It capped a remarkable season with plenty of standout performers

IndyCar
Nov 21, 2021
How F1's other IndyCar exile finally unlocked his potential Plus

How F1's other IndyCar exile finally unlocked his potential

Romain Grosjean's swashbuckling rookie year in IndyCar captured the imagination of many in 2021. But another ex-Formula 1 driver whose potential was masked by five years of toil in, at best, middling machinery also enjoyed a breakout year in 2021 - winning twice and finishing sixth in points. Here's how Marcus Ericsson finally delivered on his promise

IndyCar
Nov 16, 2021
How Ganassi's relentless new champion outfoxed IndyCar's best Plus

How Ganassi's relentless new champion outfoxed IndyCar's best

IndyCar sophomore Alex Palou stunned by overcoming team-mate Scott Dixon and the rest of a white-hot field in 2021. He was consistently fast and crucially showed a level head, rebounding well from setbacks to put himself in a near unassailable position entering the final round

IndyCar
Nov 4, 2021
Have Harvey and RLL formed IndyCar’s next winning match-up? Plus

Have Harvey and RLL formed IndyCar’s next winning match-up?

Despite appearing to have an IndyCar job for life with Meyer Shank Racing, Jack Harvey’s departure and move to Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing sparked plenty of debate. However, Harvey's and RLL's combined strengths could prove to be a winning combination - if they get the balance right

IndyCar
Oct 17, 2021
Remembering Dan Wheldon and his last and most amazing IndyCar win Plus

Remembering Dan Wheldon and his last and most amazing IndyCar win

Saturday 16 October marks the 10th anniversary of Dan Wheldon’s death. David Malsher-Lopez pays tribute, then asks Wheldon’s race engineer from 2011, Todd Malloy, to recall that magical second victory at the Indianapolis 500

IndyCar
Oct 16, 2021
Why Kyle Kirkwood is America's new IndyCar ace-in-waiting Plus

Why Kyle Kirkwood is America's new IndyCar ace-in-waiting

Kyle Kirkwood, the record-setting junior formula driver, sealed the Indy Lights championship last weekend. But despite an absurdly strong junior career and scholarship money, his next move is far from clear

IndyCar
Oct 6, 2021
Why IndyCar title glory is just the start for Ganassi's new star Plus

Why IndyCar title glory is just the start for Ganassi's new star

Newly-crowned IndyCar champion Alex Palou has been lauded as a complete driver and veteran-like in only his second season. The 24-year-old is still in the early days of his career, but the parallels are there for all to see with his six-time champion Chip Ganassi Racing team-mate who has been CGR's team leader since 2014

IndyCar
Sep 28, 2021