Luis Michael Dorrbecker’s first taste of the Verizon IndyCar Series has him eager for his upcoming test with Schmidt Peterson Motorsports at the Sebring International Raceway short course on Wednesday.
The 24-year-old Mexican, who was born in Gifhorn, Germany, attended the Phoenix Raceway open test Feb. 10-11 as a guest of the team. While he has never raced on an oval, let alone been to one, he was eager to get behind the wheel.
“If I had the chance, I would like to jump out there right now,” Dorrbecker said. “Obviously it looks very impressive the amount of downforce they use on oval like this. It makes for huge speeds in the corners even when you see that it is not a superspeedway. It is a very small oval so it’s just amazing.”
A graduate of European F3 and Formula Renault 2000 who also raced in the United States in Skip Barber competition, Dorrbecker achieved a career milestone last year when he won the Auto GP championship on the strength of 10 wins.
After racing in Europe for seven years, he is shifting gears with sights toward the Verizon IndyCar Series. Dorrbecker has long been a fan of Indy car racing because of the diversity the series offers. Seeing everything firsthand confirmed that.
“I’m pleasantly surprised, so to speak, because it’s one of my favorite series,” he said.
“On a personal level, it is the most complete series in the world,” he said. “You have superspeedways, ovals, (temporary street) circuits, road courses and you have to be fast on all of them. I can’t say I’m surprised, I kind of imagined it like this.”
While the on-track product has him excited, Dorrbecker also finds the openness of the INDYCAR paddock very welcoming compared to what he is used to seeing in Europe.
“It’s definitely a big surprise because I’m used to (a paddock) where everything is closed off,” he said. “Everyone is in their area and no one speaks to anyone. It’s obviously very different but it is…