Date registered: Sep 2004
Vehicle: 1985 500SEC, 1991 190E 2.6.
Location: Los Angeles / Hannover Germany
Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Quoted: 936 Post(s)
German rookie Sutil to partner Albers at Spyker F1
Thu 21 Dec, 11:58 AM
LONDON (Reuters) - Germany's Adrian Sutil will drive for Spyker next year alongside Christijan Albers of the Netherlands, the Formula One team said on Thursday.
The 23-year-old was the team's Friday test driver at three grands prix this year while also winning the Japanese Formula Three championship with the Toyota-powered TOMS team.
Spyker, who had already confirmed Albers, said in a statement that the Munich driver had signed a long-term contract.
No financial details were given.
"I really enjoyed being in the F1 paddock this year and to be honest I thought I would be a test driver in 2007," said Sutil, an accomplished pianist whose Uruguayan-born father Jorge played violin for the Munich Philarmonic.
The announcement ended Portuguese driver Tiago Monteiro's hopes of retaining the race seat with a team that failed to score a point in 2006 but are switching from Toyota to Ferrari engines next year.
"This is a great signing for the team but also a proud one for me personally," said team boss Colin Kolles in the statement.
"Adrian made his F3 (Euroseries) debut with Team Kolles in 2004 and quite obviously had huge potential when he scored his first pole position in his third race.
"He has driven for two great teams since then and matured very quickly. Everyone at Spyker was very impressed when he drove for us in 2006 which is why we have worked long and hard to get him in the race team."
Sutil will be the fourth German on the starting grid when the season starts in Melbourne in March, along with Ralf Schumacher, Nick Heidfeld and Nico Rosberg. Only Britain, also with four, has as many.
Dutch luxury sportscar company Spyker bought the Russian-licensed Midland team last September and will start next season as Spyker F1.
Toro Rosso is now the only team yet to confirm their 2007 lineup, although they are likely to retain Italian Vitantonio Liuzzi and American Scott Speed.
"We are considering what to do and we have not finished all our discussions," team owner Gerhard Berger told Britain's Autosport magazine.
"I would say our two guys, Tonio and Scott, are on pole position but there are still a few things we have to sort out. We are close to finding out and will have something to say by the end of the year."