Driver reveals how weather plays important role in Indy 500, switches places with CBS4’s Lindsay Riley

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Neil Alberico loves the month of May in Indianapolis. The Indy Lights driver hopes to be in the Indy 500 one day.

He tells me that as soon as the car starts, all his nerves go away and he gets excited to get on the track!

Weather plays a very important role in race day preparations and on the actual race day. It’s not just about whether it will rain, but temperature and wind are also very important. The weather affects not only the track but how the car performs.

Neil says that the perfect race day conditions are calm winds, with sunshine and a warm track temperature with cooler air temperatures. This helps get the maximum amount of down force and performance out of the car and the engine.

Every pit has its own weather station. On the particular morning we were there it was 71 degrees with a light wind, which is PERFECT racing conditions.

Having an accurate forecast for race day is essential because if you can better predict the track conditions, you can make decisions regarding tires and the car that could give you the advantage to win the race.

You are relying on friction, because drivers are going 240 mph into the turn and if you make a mistake in the oval, you will hit the wall hard.

Since weather plays such an important role in race day preparations, we brought Neil into the CBS4 studio to learn a little and give my job a try for a day.

Naturally, I had him present the weather conditions at the track. He then gave the seven-day forecast a try and did great!