McLaren has announced that it has extended its contract with test and reserve driver Gary Paffett into the 2012 season.
Paffett has been involved with McLaren since 2005 and has dovetailed his commitments with the team alongside his racing programme elsewhere, with his new agreement with the team allowing his racing career to continue alongside the testing role.
“I'm extremely pleased to have renewed my relationship with Vodafone McLaren Mercedes,” the Briton said. “As everybody knows, success in Formula 1 is developed through the strength and duration of relationships: I've been a part of this team for more than five years, and it's a place where I really feel happy and comfortable, and where I can confidently speak my mind.
“I'm proud that my contribution has enabled the team to remain a race- and championship-winning force in Formula 1, and I truly believe that we'll continue to grow and improve in the future.”
McLaren team boss Martin Whitmarsh welcomed news of Paffett's new deal.
“Gary has become a vital part of our technical support and development team – both at the track and in the simulator,” he said. “Both Gary and the team believes that this deal will underline his reputation as a strong development driver and a true team player.”