Doornbos in for Friesacher at Minardi 19 Jul 2005
Jordan third driver will become Minardi race driver this weekend when Robert Doornbos replaces Patrick Friesacher, who has been dropped by the Italian team due to sponsorship issues. Doornbos will partner fellow Dutchman Christijan Albers.
"We are pleased to welcome Robert to Minardi," said team principal, Paul Stoddart, following Tuesdays announcement. "He has demonstrated clearly over the last year that he has the pace necessary to compete in Formula One, and we are pleased to give him the opportunity to make his World Championship debut at this weekend's German Grand Prix.
I believe he is going to do an excellent job over the coming races, and I'm sure the Minardi team can expect even more enthusiastic support from the Netherlands, if that's possible, as we now have the first, all-Dutch driver line-up.
"I would also like to take this opportunity to thank Patrick sincerely for his efforts on behalf of the team, and although commercial considerations mean we have had to bring our relationship with him to an end, this decision should in no way be taken as a reflection on his skill or ability as a driver. We continue to rate him very highly, and wish him all the best for the future."
Friesacher made his Formula One debut with Minardi at the start of the 2005 season. The Austrian scored his first and only world championship points with sixth place in the United States Grand Prix.