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Kobayashi aiming for early F1 return 22 Jul 2013

Ferrari's Kamui Kobayashi at Moscow City Racing, Russia, July 2013 Ferrari's Kamui Kobayashi at Moscow City Racing, Russia, July 2013 Kamui Kobayashi (JPN) Sauber celebrates in parc ferme.
Formula One World Championship, Rd15, Japanese Grand Prix, Race, Suzuka, Japan, Sunday, 7 October 2012

Former Sauber driver Kamui Kobayashi has said he is targeting a return to Formula One racing as soon as possible, after making his first public appearance in a Ferrari F1 car during a demonstration event in Russia over the weekend.

Kobayashi, who scored his maiden podium at his home Grand Prix in Japan last year, lost his Sauber seat at the end of 2012, despite a fan-based effort to secure him funding. He is currently racing with Ferrari in the FIA World Endurance Championship, but wants to be back on the F1 grid.

“At the moment, there are many teams who prefer to choose their drivers based on how much money they can bring, rather than on their ability on track: I hope this trend will change, because my aim is to be back there as soon as possible and I am working hard to succeed,” he told the Ferrari website.

“Meanwhile, all I can do is give my all to Ferrari in the GT races and be available to the team for whatever they want me to do, such as events like this, or when they ask me to help with the development of the car by working on the simulator.”

Kobayashi was in Russia participating in the fifth annual running of the Moscow City Racing event. Things got off to a rather too spectacular start when he crashed and badly damaged the F60 he was driving, but fortunately Ferrari had a second car on hand.

“The track was very slippery and there was a marked bump at that point, which is why I hit the barrier,” he explained. “A shame, but I am pleased the team let me out again after a few minutes.

“I was very impressed by the city: you know, I come from a big place like Tokyo, but you don’t feel the weight of history there as you do in Moscow. Also, it was nice to see so much enthusiasm for Formula One: you can tell there is a lot of passion and a desire to see real racing cars. I really hope that next year, Russia can stage its first ever Grand Prix!”

Ferrari were one of five Formula One teams taking part in the event, along with Caterham, Lotus, Marussia and McLaren.

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