Force India has completed its driver line-up for the 2010 F1 season by confirming the appointment of Paul di Resta as its test and reserve driver.
The Mercedes DTM driver was confirmed in the role during a press conference in Glasgow, where it was also revealed that the Scot is set take part in a number of Friday practice sessions to give him valuable track time at the wheel of the VJM03.
As well as attending all events on the F1 calendar, di Resta will also compete in the DTM again in 2010 to keep his race skills sharp.
“I am ecstatic to finally get the chance to move into F1 at last,” the 23-year-old, who impressed the team during a three-day test prior to Christmas, said. “I'm pleased I can start my F1 career with Force India, a team that has a lot of potential. I see this move as taking me one step closer to achieving my dream of racing in F1 but I know I have a lot to learn in terms of the car and the tracks right now.
“I think this programme is a perfect way to prepare fully and be ready to go if and when the chance of a race seat comes. I hope this will be the start of a long-term future with Force India. With the support of all of the team, including Whyte & Mackay, I'm sure we will grow together.”
Force India team chairman Vijay Mallya said he was proud to have di Resta onboard and said he hoped the test deal would be the start of a long relationship.
“I would like to thank both Paul and JR Hildebrand for their commitment in the test in Jerez,” he said. “Both worked very hard and were impressive in the test. We are very proud to have someone of Paul's calibre joining the team as his potential was clear in the test and he has the right attitude for making it in F1.
“The programme we have put together will allow him to get to grips with the car, the team and the environment and various pressures associated with F1 and we look forward to this becoming a very fruitful partnership.”