AJ Foyt Racing will not be in a bind for this month’s Indianapolis 500, even though it was a costly weekend for the team at the recent Texas Motor Speedway double-header.
Both of the team’s cars were caught up in wrecks throughout the weekend, with Sebastien Bourdais having to retire from both events due to heavy damage in each race.
Since the cars run during the Texas races were the same low downforce variety that are run at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, there was some concern that the damaged cars would impact preparations for the upcoming race.
But even with the team running four cars in this year’s 500, there are no setbacks due to those wrecks since those particular cars were not even at the track in Texas.
“Could have done without Texas, that weekend, a lot of that carnage,” said Larry Foyt, president of AJ Foyt Racing.
“The good thing was neither of those cars were slated for the Indy 500, so we are putting them back together for the road course races.
“They weren’t 500 cars anyway. Parts and pieces wise, we’re still in pretty good shape.
“It’s just some extra work for the guys to get more ready for the road course race, the GMR Grand Prix.
“The Speedway cars are all independent. They’ve been sitting aside and all the parts and pieces for that are in pretty good shape.”
The most costly crash for the team was the opening lap chain reaction that retired both cars before they were even able to take the green flag.
Foyt was also asked about that wreck and if anything should be done to help minimize the chances of a pile up on the first lap.
“I think the Texas deal also was made worse just with the fact that passing was such a premium,” elaborated Foyt.
“That second lane wasn’t really working great. All the guys know getting a jump on the start, if you could get three or four spots was huge. It might take you half the night to do that on track.
“I think that was just a bit of a perfect storm of a lot of things. I haven’t really gone back and reviewed it in its entirety.
“It looked like some of the guys at the back — when we have one to go, it seemed like those warmup laps went by really quickly and the field looked pretty spread out.
“I think the guys at the back were hustling to get caught up, lined up. They were carrying quite a bit of speed.
“Definitely something we need to look at, maybe get the guys a little bit more time to get everything warmed up and get in line without having to hustle back out.
“Just one of those things. I think it made for that perfect storm.”