Marcus Ericsson has adapted to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway like ducks take to the water.

The 28-year-old Swedish rookie has had a stable Month of May and qualified a respectable 12th place, the highest of any Arrow Schmidt Peterson Motorsports driver. He also only encountered one incident – a slight nick of the wall in Monday's two-hour practice session.

While ovals are new to the five-year Formula One veteran, he has shown no reluctance.

"We've been competitive all month, and I'm really comfortable out there," he said. "As a driver, you don't know how you're going to feel on an oval because its different from anything I've ever done. I've had a lot of fun. I've gotten into this oval thing, and I really like it."

The NTT IndyCar Series rookie began his oval education a few weeks ago at a test at the Texas Motor Speedway. He admitted that he was daunted afterward but didn't let that get him down and immediately shifted focus on developing his oval craft.

"Texas was very difficult here and there, and I was struggling before I got the hang of it, but it helped me a lot before I got to Indy," he said. "For sure it took me a while but I've been watching a lot of videos, and I've been getting a lot of help from my team and teammates, so I've felt pretty comfortable pretty quickly."

His pace at the 2.5-mile superspeedway has impressed his veteran teammate James Hinchcliffe. Hinchcliffe noted that Ericsson is willing to learn and has been methodical throughout the entire process.

"The biggest thing that we told him when we got here was to take it slow, you have a lot of practice time, and he did just that," he said. "He built up to it at a very moderate pace - Just the way that we told him to.

"He hasn't made any mistakes, he had that little whitewall situation on Monday, but that was just him trying to avoid something in front of him."

Ericsson also found valuable input from Robert Wickens, who has been on hand. He related to Wickens, especially since he went through the same experience a year ago.

"Robbie's been through everything I've experienced this year. He did it 12 months ago. It's been helpful to ask him things and get advice as well. All of that's been helpful to speed up that process of learning and to drive and race on an oval."

The start to Ericsson's foray into IndyCar has been a bit rocky while the results don't match the performance. He was running inside the top ten at St. Petersburg when a mechanical problem sidelined him and was poised for a top five at COTA when a yellow flag ruined his strategy and dropped him to 15th. Qualifying has also been a struggle with an average start of 16.4.

Ericsson feels unfulfilled with the results but has kept a positive attitude throughout the situation and is hopeful that better results are ahead.

"For different reasons, we haven't gotten the results that I feel like we've deserved," he said. "That's the thing if you look at the season on the results side, but if you look deep into it, you can see the potential in it. That's why I'm not worried. I think if we continue the rest of this year, we are going to do great."

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