Robert Wickens: “I’m going to work overnight as if I’m driving tomorrow”

Robert Wickens enjoyed his day in the #7 SPM machine at Road America - Credit: Joe Skibinski / IndyCar

Robert Wickens remains unsure to whether he will make his Verizon IndyCar Series race debut this weekend after deputising on Friday for Mikhail Aleshin at Schmidt Peterson Motorsport after the Russian was delayed from leaving France following last weekend’s 24 Hours of Le Mans due to immigration issues.

Wickens drove in both free practice sessions at Road America on Friday and finished both in twentieth position, with the Canadian driving a single seater competitively for the first time since 2011.

The current Mercedes-Benz DTM Series racer hopes he will be able to help the team out for the rest of the weekend regardless of whether he will be behind the wheel or if Aleshin arrives at the circuit in time to resume his driving duties in the #7 machine.

“I’m really happy with today,” said Wickens. “Obviously you always want to make as much progress as possible, and you never know if you’ve done enough or if I should achieve more, or whatever the case is.

“The biggest thing for me is the car is still in one piece and I haven’t made a terminal error yet! The Schmidt Peterson Motorsports team has done a fantastic job getting me up to speed and making me comfortable.

“It’s been a strange day because I’m not really sure if I’m doing the next session since I don’t know when Mikhail [Aleshin] is arriving or if he’s arriving. So I’m going to work overnight as if I’m driving tomorrow morning, and if not, then hopefully I can help out the team somehow.”