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de la Rosa admits concerns over Hispania uncertainty

Pedro de la Rosa has mused that Hispania Racing (HRT) is not 'a serious and ambitious project', as he fears he will be pipped to a seat at the financially-struggling Spanish outfit in F1 2011 by a pay-driver
Pedro de la Rosa has conceded that he fears troubled F1 2010 newcomer Hispania Racing (HRT) is not 'a serious and ambitious sporting project', after admitting to being interested in joining the team for next season, but revealing that negotiations have hit an impasse.

Having been dropped by Sauber midway through 2010 and having subsequently joined Pirelli as the Italian tyre-supplier's official test driver – effectively a straight swap with Nick Heidfeld – de la Rosa has since held talks with HRT, but following a prolonged silence in discussions, the 39-year-old has now reflected that the struggling Spanish operation is relying 'heavily on sponsorship' from potential drivers...and he has none.

“I was very excited about Hispania, because I really believed they had an ambitious sporting project,” he told sports newspaper AS, “but weeks have passed and I have not heard anything more, so I understand they have not defined the project yet.”

“There is really nothing with Hispania,” he added in an interview with Europa Press. “I've always been very clear – with a serious and ambitious sporting project, I would love to be with them – but today, I don't know what their project is.”

Adding that should a race seat not materialise elsewhere on the grand prix grid, he 'would like' to return to his test driving job at McLaren-Mercedes – his employer from 2003 to 2009 – de la Rosa cautioned that 'we have not talked seriously' yet, and mused that the drivers with the best chance of grabbing one of the remaining available cockpits for 2011 are those with solid financial backing behind them, such as Renault's Russian rookie Vitaly Petrov.

“So many teams have not confirmed their drivers because they are looking for someone with money,” he underlined. “That's the reality and what is striking about F1 at the moment. [Petrov] was able to make his debut with a team as good as Renault – I would love to have the same support from Spain that he has in Russia.

“Now we have to get a major sponsor to open the doors. It's always been that way, but now it's more significant because it's not just the small and the bad teams that need money from drivers.”

“I would like Pedro to be our driver because he is a friend and he deserves it,” confirmed HRT team owner José Ramón Carabante, “but we are not in a rush on the matter of drivers.”

Related Pictures

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Friday Practice 1, Jose Ramon Carabante (ESP) Hispania Racing F1 Team, Team Owner
Hispania Racing (HRT) owner Jose Ramon Carabante
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Friday Practice 2, Pedro de la Rosa (ESP), BMW Sauber F1 Team, C29
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Taz - Unregistered

December 14, 2010 11:16 PM

He's had his time, he'd be fine at testing duties but they have Gary Paffet so why should he move aside ? Personally I think he was a bit unlucky not to see the season out at Sauber, not sure having Nick Heidfeld (who I rate higher than pedro) in the team really did much but confirm the other fellow is quick.

Buck Bundy

December 14, 2010 9:43 PM

These days you seem to need money and talent, unfortunately for Pedro he seems to be lacking in both areas. If there are potential sponsors out there I think they will be more tempted by other drivers.

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