Ernesto Viso looks set for a second season in the IndyCar Series after apparently agreeing terms to rejoin the HVM Racing outfit that gave him the chance to graduate from GP2 in 2008.
The Venezuelan had been set to contest the Champ Car World Series with Minardi Team USA, and remained on board when Keith Wiggins shrugged off the loss of Paul Stoddart as partner and took his rebranded squad to the newly-unified championship. Despite having to adapt quickly to the very different Dallara-Honda package and get used to racing on ovals, Viso finished 18th overall, with a best race finish of fourth second time out in St Petersburg.
He attracted a fair amount of criticism for a robust driving style, but provided some of the most spectacular action of the season. He also missed the Nashville race due to an attack of the mumps, which hindered his bid to keep pace in the rookie of the year standings.
Now, although HVM has yet to confirm its movements for 2009, Viso has revealed that he has secured an agreement to return with Wiggins' squad for a second season.
According to an e-mail sent to the Indianapolis Star
, Viso confirmed his return - apparently after both sides had agreed to him exploring other options - and revealed that he expects to have former Minardi pilot Robert Doornbos as team-mate in an expanded two-car line-up that mirrors HVM's expansion into the supporting Indy Lights category.
Doornbos, who is currently performing for the Netherlands in the A1 Grand Prix series and won races for AC Milan in the inaugural Superleague Formula initiative, drove for Wiggins in the final season of Champ Car in 2007, having previously raced for Minardi in F1.
The Dutchman, who missed out on rookie honours to Will Power in 2007, was rumoured to be chasing an IndyCar ride throughout last season, and had been tabbed as a possible replacement for Sebastien Bourdais at Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing prior to Justin Wilson signing with the championship-winning outfit.