Lotus Renault GP has announced Fairuz Fauzy as its reserve driver for the F1 2011 season.
The Malaysian, who somewhat confusing was with the other Lotus team last year ran by Tony Fernandes, will combine his duties with Lotus Renault GP by competing again in the GP2 series, F1's main feeder category, with Super Nova Racing. His car will carry 'significant branding' from Malaysian car manufacturer and Lotus Cars stakeholder, Proton.
“I want to thank Lotus Renault GP for giving me this opportunity,” said the 28-year-old, who was runner-up in World Series by Renault in 2009. “It's a real honour to be part of a top team that has achieved so much in the sport and it's something any driver dreams about.
“It's feels especially exciting because of the new partnership with Lotus and I'm very proud to be here at the start of a new era for the team. It's also a great opportunity for me to improve as a driver and learn as much as I can about Formula 1 so that hopefully one day I can be on the grid myself.”
As the reserve driver for Lotus Renault GP, Fauzy also becomes the first driver to join the LRGP Academy, a programme designed to bring on 'promising talents' and prepare them for F1.
“As a member of the programme, he will take part in development work for the team and will have the opportunity to gain further F1 experience in a 2009-spec F1 car, the R29,” Lotus Renault GP added in a statement to the press.
The LRGP programme is designed to prepare drivers for the demands of F1 competition both on and off the track.
“Whether attending fitness camps, undergoing media training, or actually getting behind the wheel of a F1 car, it gives drivers the chance to develop a wide range of skills while building a relationship with the team. Several drivers will be inducted into the programme during 2011 to complete Lotus Renault GP's reserve driver line-up,” the statement concluded.