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Leinders to test for Jordan next week 15 Jan 2004

Bas Leinders has a seat fitting at Jordan, 14 January 2004

Jordan have announced that 2003 Nissan World Series driver Bas Leinders will drive for the team at their first test session of 2004 in Barcelona next week. Leinders will get his first outing in a Formula One car on January 21, the second day of Jordan's four-day programme.

"I'm very happy that Jordan have given me the opportunity to do my first Formula One test," said the 28-year-old Belgian. "I, along with all Belgians, am looking forward to this. Hopefully we can do a good job and see what the future brings."

Team boss Eddie Jordan commented: "I'm pleased to give Bas Leinders this opportunity in F1. He has proved himself to be a talented and persistent driver in the junior categories and this chance is well deserved. I'm delighted to see the Belgian Grand Prix return to the calendar - we have great memories associated with the track at Spa-Francorchamps, where we scored our historic 1-2 maiden victory - and it would be great if there was a Belgian driver participating as well."

Leinders has several championships under his belt including: European Karting Championship (beating Jarno Trulli) in 1990, British and European Formula Ford Championships in 1995, European Formula Opel Championship in 1996 (beating the records of Rubens Barrichello and Mika Hakkinen to obtain eight victories in one season) and the German Formula 3 Championship in 1998 (the first Belgian to win this series) - the same year he set the fastest lap time in the Macau Grand Prix. In recent years he has competed in the FIA International F3000 Championship and he finished third in Championship in the Nissan World Series in 2002 and 2003.

Jordan have yet to reveal who will fill their two race seats for the 2004 season, but the team did say on Thursday that they will shortly announce drivers for the remaining days of next week's test.