Sunday March 3, 2013
Caterham name Rossi and Qinghua as reserve drivers
LONDON: Young American driver Alexander Rossi and Ma Qinghua of China have been named as reserve drivers for Malaysian Formula One outfit Caterham, the team announced on Friday.
Frenchman Charles Pic, formerly of Marussia, and Dutch rookie Giedo van der Garde will be the lead drivers for the team.
Rossi, 21, has already been a test driver, while Qinghua, 25, was previously a development driver with now defunct Spanish outfit HRT.
Heavily backed by authorities in his native Shanghai, he featured in several testing sessions last year, becoming the first Chinese driver to take part in a grand prix weekend in the process.
Now Qinghua will have the chance to take part in first practice ahead of his home grand prix next month, whilst he will also compete for Caterham Racing in the GP2 series this year.
“I know the fans at home will be really excited to see me race in GP2,” Qinghua told British-based Caterham’s website.
“With the F1 work I also have ahead of me, China can be proud that it continues to have a driver involved in motor racing at the very highest level.”
Caterham principal Cyril Abiteboul said: “Qinghua joins us with previous F1 experience from 2012, and will play a key role in helping our GP2 team achieve their 2013 goals.
“We are looking forward to helping him develop his talents, both in the F1 and GP2 environments, and giving Chinese fans a figurehead to support on track throughout the year ahead.”
The Caterham Group’s co-chairman is Tan Sri Tony Fernandes, who is also the supremo of English Premier League football club Queens Park Rangers and CEO of no-frills airline, AirAsia. — AFP