Alguersuari confirmed for Pirelli
Toro Rosso exile Jaime Algersuari will join Lucas di Grassi on Pirelli's test driver roster for 2012 with the Italian firm to complete four private tests.
Last Updated: 30/03/12 1:03pm
Toro Rosso exile Jaime Alguersuari will join Lucas di Grassi in carrying out testing duties for Pirelli during the course of this season.
Spanish youngster Alguersuari lost his STR drive along with team-mate Sebastien Buemi at the end of last season and was unable to find a race seat elsewhere on the grid, instead taking up F1 radio commentary duties for 2012.
However, with Pirelli on the lookout for a new test driver his name was one of several in the frame and on Friday Pirelli announced the 22-year-old alongside former Virgin driver di Grassi, who completed the tyre firm's test mileage last season.
Pirelli has reached agreement from F1's teams to upgrade its test car for 2012 with Alguersuari and di Grassi to run in Renault's 2010 challenger across four development tests the firm has planned during the course of the season at Jerez, Spa, Monza and Barcelona between May and September, with a schedule to be worked out for the pair over the coming weeks.
Algersuari, who has competed in 46 grands prix since his debut at the Hungarian GP in 2009, is looking forward to helping contribute to Pirelli's tyre development work for 2013 and beyond.
"I'm very happy indeed to have this fantastic opportunity. A week ago it was my birthday, when I turned 22, and now Pirelli has given me the best possible present," he said.
"I can't wait to get started with this very important and challenging job of developing the new tyres for the future, which I'm looking forward to a lot. I have a huge desire to get behind the wheel of a Formula 1 car again and return to competition, so this is a brilliant chance for me."
With two permanent test drivers for the first time, Pirelli's Motorsport Director Paul Hembery says the firm is committed to continuing to help improve the F1 spectacle
"Our commitment to providing the best possible spectacle in Formula 1 is underlined by the fact that we have two extremely fast and talented test drivers this year," he said.
"Lucas will provide us with the reference point that we need from the development programme so far, while Jaime brings an extra dimension from his experience of racing at the sharp end of the field throughout the last three seasons.
"We're going to be using the drivers for all of our single-seater testing activities, including GP2 and simulator development as well. Their input and expertise are sure to help us make even greater progress during the season, resulting in competition tyres that enhance the action further and new technologies that will eventually filter down to our Ultra High Performance road car products."