IndyCar drivers are confident that there will be no repeat of the controversy surrounding the double-file restarts at last month's Indianapolis 500 when the system is redeployed for today's Twin 275s at Texas.
The system was widely criticized at Indy on safety grounds, with some drivers fearful of the repercussions of the high line being littered with marbles late in the race. IndyCar CEO Randy Bernard met with drivers in the lead-up to this weekend's races to discuss any lingering concerns about the system, and Dario Franchitti believes that there will be no problems.
"I don't want to put words in Randy's mouth but I think he just wanted to sit down with the drivers and make sure that everything was okay, and it was," the Ganassi driver said. "He was just talking a bit about double-file and what happened at Indy and all those things, and it was a good meeting. I think it was very productive.
"One of the big things we saw at Indy was the drivers in the IndyCar Series working together to find a solution, which was having the restart at Turn 3 instead of at the start/finish line. For all kinds of reasons that was the decision that was arrived at, and that was with input from the drivers, the teams and IndyCar. And to me, when that happened, it completely changed the atmosphere and was a lot more positive."
Polesitter Alex Tagliani believes that the extra lanes available to run on at tracks like Texas will make the system easier to deal with.
"Restarts won't be an issue here because there are multiple lines - we ran three-wide in practice," he said. "When you have multiple lanes you can run in the race, the restart is not going to be a problem."
Danica Patrick backed the Canadian up.
"I think the restarts will be the easiest at the mile-and-a-halves," she said. "This is where we'll see them really be exciting and really pay off for the fans and for the drivers, because you're just flat out and there are plenty of lanes to race on."