Van der Garde, Rossi for Caterham young driver test 25 Oct 2012
Caterham are to field their reserve and test drivers Giedo van der Garde and Alexander Rossi at the forthcoming young driver test in Abu Dhabi, taking place at the Yas Marina Circuit from November 6-8. Reserve Van der Garde, 27, will be in the car for days one and two, with 21-year-old tester Rossi taking over for day three.
Van der Garde, who gets his fourth Friday practice outing with Caterham in India this weekend, has had a strong year in GP2 with Caterham Racing, winning twice, in Spain and at the season finale in Singapore, and recording two podium finishes at the showpiece event in Monaco.
"By the time we get to the young driver test, I will have completed several FP1 sessions with the team and it will be good to be able to extend that more with two full days in the car, said the Dutchman. I'm sure it will be a very busy couple of days but I want to make sure I continue to learn as much as possible and do what I can to help the team have a useful few days testing before the last two races of the season.
"I believe I have benefited enormously from the work I have been doing with Caterham this year, in both GP2 and with the F1 team, and the chance to drive in Abu Dhabi is another positive step in the right direction for my career as a professional racing driver."
American Rossi drove for Caterham in FP1 in Barcelona back in May and has had a decent season with Arden Caterham in Formula Renault 3.5, one of his highlights also coming in Monaco where he finished fifth.
"I want to thank Caterham F1 Team for the opportunity once again to take part in the young driver test in Abu Dhabi, he said. I've had a good year with the team as test driver and, on top of the FP1 I did in Spain, this is another chance to add more F1 experience at a track I know well, having raced there several times in the past. Every time I have worked with the F1 team since I joined the driver development program in 2010, I have had all the support I need to do the best job I can when I am in the car.
"The team's commitment to helping me develop, in all areas of my racing career, is a very positive sign that they believe in me and want to help me reach the very top of my sport. For the Abu Dhabi test I've already had several conversations with the engineers about what is planned and it's definitely going to be busy, but I was comfortable in the CT01 earlier this year, and very prepared mentally and physically, so now I'm just looking forward to getting in the car."
Caterham team CEO Cyril Abiteboul commented: "With all the drivers we work with, we want to make sure they can see that we can help guide them along a clear path to the top of the motorsport industry. On top of the FP1 sessions both drivers have already run for us, giving both Giedo and Alexander the chance to also test with us in Abu Dhabi is a good example of our on-going commitment to helping talented drivers achieve their long-term goals.
The Abu Dhabi test is a good reward for their hard work in 2012, but it also gives us two drivers who know the team, understand how to get what's needed from the cars and are familiar with the circuit - the best of all worlds for us in what will be an important test."
The other teams expected to test in Abu Dhabi are McLaren, Red Bull, Sauber, Toro Rosso and Lotus. The remainder of the grid carried out their young driver sessions earlier in the year at Magny-Cours in France and Silverstone in the UK.
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