RC Enerson believes he is better prepared to take advantage of an IndyCar opportunity now than he was when he made a handful of appearances with Dale Coyne Racing in 2016.
Enerson tested with Carlin at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca on Friday and is back in the car at Circuit of The Americas today, although he is yet to confirm a race program. The team currently has Max Chilton signed full-time for its No.59 entry, but is yet to finalize its plans for No.23 beyond the five-race deal for Charlie Kimball.
“I think I feel more comfortable now,” said Enerson, who raced an IndyCar at Mid-Ohio, Watkins Glen (where he finished ninth) and Sonoma with Coyne in 2016.
“The aero package is a lot more similar to what I drove for a year and a half in Lights, and I think everybody else got a bit comfortable with how the old aero package was. So I think coming back with this one gives us a little bit of an edge.
“And I was in Lights when Carlin was pretty much the toughest competition – Juncos was winning the championship, but they were next in terms of making it hard for us [Schmidt Peterson Motorsport]. They swept the first three races in my first season with Lights and pretty much dominated, and then I come here and their cars are amazingly prepared. I think last year they had zero mechanicals. So they are a very high-ranking team.”
While arrangements for Enerson and Carlin to continue working together into the season are still being finalized, the 21-year-old says that the COTA test will be about striking a balance between proving himself and ensuring that the team gets what it needs to from the time on track.
“I want to be as helpful to the team as I can,” he said. “I am there to show what I can do, but I’m also there to help them with setups on the car and help progress their program. So I am there to do both things, and trying to dance around that line is very fine, but I think we’ve done a pretty good job of not stepping over it.”