Despite speculation to the contrary in the run-up to, and during, the recent Australian Grand Prix, Anthony Davidson has yet to be officially installed as Brawn GP's test and reserve driver.
While the Briton would appear among the more logical bets for the support role to Melbourne 1-2 finishers Jenson Button and Rubens Barrichello, the team has been too busy concentrating on fettling its BGP001 chassis and Mercedes engine in the short amount of time it had on track before the season-opener to consider a reserve.
Davidson's apparent appointment was reported in the days leading up to Melbourne, and both the driver and team CEO Nick Fry hinted over the weekend that such a deal might be in the offing. Davidson, currently filling the role of analyst for BBC Radio 5 Live
, appeared on 'track TV' at Albert Park and said that he was 'glad to be part of Brawn GP', while Fry told Austrian news agency APA
that Alex Wurz would not be retained as the team's test driver because the team could not afford him.
“We are not rich enough to employ a third driver," Fry claimed, “Alex will still be with us, but he will have different tasks. We want to work with him, but he is not going to be driving for us.”
Fry's reasoning has since been backed up by the response to Crash.net
's attempt to clarify the situation, as a Brawn GP spokeswoman revealed that 'the position of our third driver is to be confirmed at the moment, [but] there has not been an announcement from the team'.
Having been a karting contemporary of Australian GP winner Button, Davidson rejoined his fellow Briton in the top flight when they were put together at BAR-Honda in 2005. Davidson had got his F1 break with BAR in 2001, which hired him as test driver and, a brief, two-race, switch to Minardi aside, he has remained loyal to Honda ever since, staying with the Japanese marque when it assumed ownership of the BAR team in 2006 and then being seconded to its Super Aguri effort alongside Takuma Sato for the year and bit that the team survived before folding in May 2008.
Since then, Davidson has concentrated on media opportunities, only once getting the chance to return to an F1 cockpit - when called upon by Honda to provide a fresh set of senses as it attempted to tune its recalcitrant 2008 machine last June.