Alexander Rossi announced as Marussia's reserve driver week on from Caterham exit
American joins rivals with plans to drive in some P1 sessions
By James Galloway. Last Updated: 24/07/14 5:29pm
New Marussia reserve driver Alexander Rossi
America's Alexander Rossi has secured a swift return to Formula 1 after leaving Caterham by signing as reserve driver with rivals Marussia for the rest of the 2014 season.
The 22-year-old left his respective reserve and race role at the Caterham F1 and GP2 teams last week following the former's sale by Tony Fernandes to a consortium of Swiss and Middle Eastern investors.
However, it has taken just eight days for Rossi to resurface with Marussia announcing his arrival as their new reserve driver from this weekend's Hungarian GP. The Banbury-based team say the American "will be on hand throughout the season to deputise for either race driver in the event that they are unable to compete" with Rossi citing opportunities to drive in some Practice One sessions over the final nine grands prix.
“Today is a good day and next step in my Formula 1 career," Rossi said in a team statement.
"Since my initial discussions with the Marussia F1 Team management, I’ve felt right at home. I’m looking forward to working with the yeam in Hungary and building for the rest of the season. The timing of my affiliation with the team is perfect, especially beginning in Hungary before the summer break. My goal is Formula 1, and I’m delighted to be immersed into the team as Official Reserve Driver, where I have the opportunity to prepare for this next step, with plans to drive in Free Practice 1 this season.
“Marussia is in an exciting place right now and the progress at the team is clear for all to see. I’m thrilled that now I have the chance to be part of that journey, to progress and play a useful role in the development of the Team. I want to thank Marussia F1 Team for the opportunity this season."
Team boss John Booth says Rossi has impressed from afar and acknowledged the links the 22-year-old brings to the American market.
“We are very pleased to welcome Alexander to the Marussia F1 Team in the role of Official Reserve Driver," Booth said.
"He is a proven talent whom we have observed in GP2 and we have also been impressed by his performances during Friday morning free practice sessions over the past two seasons. The US is an exciting market for the sport and Alexander has a great deal of support there, so it is nice to develop new links to that audience.
"Alexander will be an integral part of the Team, immersing himself in our engineering activity so that he is fully prepared should he ever be required to deputise for one of the race drivers.”
Watch this weekend’s Hungarian GP LIVE ONLY on Sky Sports F1. Extensive coverage from the Hungaroring begins with Practice on Friday from 8.45am