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McLaren downplay de la Rosa reports

McLaren play down talk of a possible return for Pedro de la Rosa
McLaren has denied reports that Pedro de la Rosa could be set to return to the team in his old role of test and reserve driver.

De la Rosa held the role from 2003 through to the end of the 2009 season before he returned to a race seat with Sauber – only to leave the team with five races of the season remaining when he was replaced by Nick Heidfeld.

The Spaniard then took up a testing role with Pirelli to aid development of the new 2011 F1 tyres although the 40-year-old remained hopeful of earning a role in the paddock for the new season.

Having been ruled out of a race seat with Hispania, de la Rosa's only option would be to return to a testing role, with reports in the Spanish press suggesting a that he could end up back at McLaren after meeting with Ron Dennis while the McLaren chairman was visiting Spain.

However, a McLaren spokesman has denied that a meeting took place, with de la Rosa appearing likely to remain with Pirelli unless another opportunity comes along.

“Ron Dennis was indeed in Madrid a few days ago,” the spokesman is quoted by Motorsport.com, “but media reports suggesting that he met with Pedro de la Rosa are incorrect.”


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