COTA to Host Preseason Test

Josef Newgarden exits Barber IndyCar pit box
Team Penske, like all other full-season IndyCar Series entrants, will have three offseason test days to utilize before March 4, 2019. | Photo: Andy Clary / Spacesuit Media

As one of three open tests for the IndyCar Series in 2019, a two-day outing at Circuit of The Americas in February will mark the lone paddock-wide gathering during the six-month offseason.

Less than one month ahead of the start of a new season and just over two months before the Austin, Texas circuit puts on its first IndyCar race weekend March 22–24, COTA will open its gates to all 2019 entrants Feb. 12–13.

Once the season begins, in-season open tests will be held on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway oval and at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca ahead of official on-track activity at each venue April 24 and Sept. 19, respectively.

The private testing period attached to the new IndyCar season opens Oct. 1, 2018 and lasts until Sept. 11, 2019. Teams will navigate blackout periods around Thanksgiving and Christmas as well as within one week of each race weekend except the season opener in St. Pete. Each team is allowed three days of private offseason testing but must complete those tests by March 4, 2019.

Rookie drivers contesting the full season and new teams will be granted two additional test days, to be used by Sept. 11. Full-season teams wishing to test current Indy Lights drivers will have an extra test day to take advantage of, along with teams entering at least one car for full campaigns in both Indy Lights and IndyCar.

Chevrolet and Honda will be able to test their hardware for one day each at any approved track other than the three set to host open tests in 2019.

Offseason preparations will be complete before the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg opens the 17-race season March 10.

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