Dan Thorn profile picture Dan Thorn 3 months ago 8
Motorsport

This Onboard Of An IndyCar Racer Using Slicks In The Rain Is A Deeply Impressive Clench-Fest

On a wet-but-drying circuit, Marco Andretti took a gamble on switching to slick tyres before everyone else, resulting in a couple of hair-raising laps

Remind me later

Racing on a drying track is always a fine line - not just because there’s usually just a car width’s worth of track that’s actually dry, requiring ultimate precision, but because of the timing of when to switch to slick tyres. Too soon, and you lose lap time and have a huge risk of putting it in the wall. Too late, and you lose time on wet tyres while everyone else is enjoying the pace of fresh, hot slicks.

Andretti arguably went slightly too soon as he struggled to generate tyre temperature in the slippery conditions (then again, he was running near the back with little to lose anyway). The result is this incredible onboard footage, featuring more steering inputs than a driving scene from a 1960s movie and all sorts of oversteer-y moments.

Code brown!
Code brown!

Not only did he do a great job to keep the thing in a (mostly) straight line, but Andretti and his team would have been rubbing their hands together with glee when a caution came out. Under normal conditions, his early gamble would have paid off with a leap up the order, but officials opened the pit lane earlier than usual, allowing most of those ahead of him to make their own stops for slicks without losing position.

Andretti ended up 16th as Josef Newgarden took the win but - if it’s any consolation - it’s Marco’s incredible car control that’s left the lasting impression.