North Star team principal Nick Forrest has admitted that overtaking FIRST in the Constructors' championship will likely prove difficult, barring high attrition levels in the final five races of the season.
Judson Sikes finished the Bahrain V-Prix in 14th, matching his teammate Aleksy Nowosinki's result from Belgium, but FIRST are still holding 11th in the championship thanks to Douglas Bacon's 13th place finish in Belgium, overtaking Nowosinki in the closing stages of the race.
"If you look at the results we've had over the season," Forrest explained, "Our best has usually been around 19th to 16th or so, ahead of the FIRSTs and the Holmqvists, but there's still been a bit of a gap to the back of the established teams, the Ocelots and the Downtons, for example."
"It seems quite unlikely we can get the result we need and take 11th in the championship on pace alone, but if the cards fall in the right way, then there's every chance we can grab that opportunity and make the most of it."
Both 14th place finishes secured by North Star occurred following races with a number of retirements affecting the field. Bahrain saw seven cars failing to reach the flag, while the Belgian V-Prix resulted in a staggering nine retirees, along with a post-race disqualification for Johan Halvosen of Meteor.
Forrest argues, however, that those results are due as much to the talent of their drivers as the misfortunes of other teams. "Judson really has stepped his game up towards the end of the European leg of the season, after the issues in the Netherlands. Aleksy's skill behind the wheel has always been apparent, and we've every confidence the two can carry their form into the American races."
"We've also managed to resolve the engine issues we were having in the early stages of the season, from the looks of things," Forrest continued, as North Star arrive in Canada on the back of four consecutive double finishes. "We are really looking forward to what we might consider a second home race, and we're hoping for another strong result here."
Olen Inman was fastest in practice for the Canadian V-Prix ahead of Allar Kangur - driving in the session in place of Adrien Simon - as DS look to continue their formidable form from Bahrain. Will Hoskins was the closest driver to the DS pair, with a time just over three tenths slower than the pace set by Inman.
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In a surprise press conference held at Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas, 2 hours from Austin, Jochem van Snelheid has appeared to confirm he will be competing in the inaugural IndyVirtual series starting next year.