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Katherine Legge to test Minardi 19 Oct 2005

Katherine Legge, Toyota Atlantic race at the Taylor Woodrow Grand Prix of San Jose. July 31, 2005. World ©  Webb/Sutton

British-born female racer Katherine Legge will get her first taste of Formula One power at the end of November when she tests for the Minardi team at Vallelunga in Italy.

Legge, 25, has raced single-seaters since 2000, following a successful eight-year stint in karts. She has competed in the United States for the last two seasons, making a name for herself and notably winning three races in the highly competitive 2005 Toyota Atlantic Championship on her way to third place in the final series standings.

"I am thrilled to have the opportunity to drive the Minardi,” she said. “It has been a dream and an ambition of mine to drive a Formula One car since I was a little girl. I am extremely grateful to (Minardi’s) Paul Stoddart and (Cosworth’s) Kevin Kalkhoven for giving me this opportunity, and I am now focused on trying to impress and do a professional job in the test."

Minardi team principal, Stoddart, said of Legge: "We have been watching Katherine's progress for some while now, and with her outstanding performances in the Toyota Atlantic Championship this season, we felt she was clearly deserving of a chance to experience a Formula One car.

“We have always said that if a sufficiently talented woman racing driver arrived on the scene, who appeared capable of handling the performance of an F1 car, we would have no hesitation in giving her an opportunity to show what she could do. I believe Katherine has done more than enough to warrant that chance."

Legge’s single-seater career has included stints in the British Formula Ford, Formula Renault and Formula Three championships. She moved to the US in 2004, competing in the North American Formula Renault 2000 series and selected rounds of the Infiniti Pro Championship, before entering Toyota Atlantic this year.