Frenchman Simon Pagenaud is looking to further his reputation as IndyCar’s ‘super-sub’ following a customs issue for HVM’s regular driver Simona de Silvestro.
De Silvestro had travelled home to visit family in Switzerland following recent testing at Infineon Raceway, before experiencing what HVM has described as a “technical issue with CBP (Customs and Border Protection)”.
Pagenaud, who has competed in two IndyCar races so far this year for Dreyer and Reindbold, is taking part in Friday practice in place of de Silvestro, and will continue for the remainder of the weekend pending de Silvestro’s situation.
HVM Team Owner, Keith Wiggins, described it as an unfortunate situation.
“We could never have imagined this kind of an issue going into a race weekend and it just adds more challenges to our 2011 season, but it’s in the team’s best interest to continue our program,” he said.
“We’re lucky to have another world-class driver like Simon Pagenaud who’s willing to step up and work with us to achieve a successful result.”
Pagenaud was 25th fastest in the opening session at Infineon, 2.2s adrift of pace-setter Dario Franchitti.
Pagenaud will race in October’s Armor All Gold Coast 600 V8 Supercars race for Garry Rogers Motorsport.