New HVM Racing signing Ernesto Viso is confident that he can be competitive by the middle of the 2008 IRL IndyCar Series season, despite his team having to learn the Dallara-Honda package from scratch after they switched codes in the wake of Champ Car's demise.
Keith Wiggins' rebranded team, formerly known as Minardi USA before Paul Stoddart pulled his backing from the project, face an uphill struggle to learn the Dallara's secrets in time for the first race at Miami this weekend, but the 23-year-old Venezuelan former GP2 Series race-winner remains optimistic.
"It's going to be a tough season for all the teams coming from Champ Car, but, hey, it is the same for everyone," he said. "This is what racing is about and in situations like these, you have to work hard to make a difference.
"The team is good and I am confident that we can progress and learn quickly. My objective is to get in a competitive position by mid-season, if we achieve that, anything can happen."
Wiggins also believes that Viso's recent experience testing HVM's Champ Car proved him to be an adaptable development driver, which will stand the team in good stead as they embark on the IRL learning process.
"Ernesto showed maturity and professionalism well beyond his years, and not only was he quick in the car, he was a very useful tool for the engineering staff," said Wiggins.
"He gives good feedback and was quick to learn the DP01, and because of this I believe he will adapt to the Dallara very quickly as well."