The FIA Formula Two Championship has revealed that it will once again offer an F1 test with Williams to the 2011 champion, while the drivers finishing second and third will earn the chance to sample GP2 machinery.
Andy Soucek and Dean Stoneman have already tested with Williams having won the title for the past two seasons while 2010 runner-up Jolyon Palmer impressed during GP2 testing in Abu Dhabi recently.
“The continuation of the Williams F1 test for the 2011 Formula Two Champion is a huge benefit, particularly as it takes place over a full day during the coveted F1 rookie tests,” F2 boss Jonathan Palmer said. “Williams are the perfect partner for F2 and they really provide the best opportunity possible for our championship winner.
“With GP2 being a well proven route to F1 we believe it's important to award GP2 tests for second and third placed drivers to reinforce our seriousness about F2 providing the most cost effective path towards F1.”
Williams chairman Adam Parr was also pleased to extend the deal with F2 into a third year.
“Williams F1 is proud of its continued association with the increasingly successful FIA Formula Two Championship,” he said. “When we embarked on the project with MotorSport Vision in 2008, our objective was to provide aspiring young racing drivers with a proving ground in which to develop their talents at a reasonable cost.
“The championship is clearly achieving those objectives and producing some of the sport's future stars. We are therefore delighted to maintain our support for a third year by rewarding the 2011 series champion with the opportunity of a Formula One test session with the AT&T Williams team.”
The top three in the series will also become eligible for an FIA Super Licence required to compete in F1.