David Coulthard believes that Jarno Trulli's apparent willingness to allow Team Lotus reserve Karun Chandhok to take over his car for the German Grand Prix suggests that it is time for the Italian to call time on his lengthy F1 career.
Chandhok was confirmed as team-mate to Heikki Kovalainen for the Nurburgring just days before the event began, having begun the season as the squad's official reserve. As part of his agreement, the Indian was promised an opportunity to prove himself in a competitive situation in 2011, but many expected that chance to come at the inaugural Indian Grand Prix at the end of October. He continues to view the German outing as a one-off, with Trulli likely to return next weekend in Hungary when Lotus hopes to have a revised power steering system in place to replace the one that has plagued the Italian all season.
Coulthard, however, reckons that Chandhok should continue in the second entry, with Trulli accepting that he has had his time in the top flight.
"If Jarno, who is now 37, is not enjoying it any more, it would be better if he made way for someone who did," the Scot wrote in his column for Britain's Daily Telegraph
newspaper, "I don't see his results, and by extension his motivation, improving significantly from this season to next."
Trulli has shown an interest in America's NASCAR series, and has been linked to a possible future in sportscars and the Le Mans 24 Hours, but insists that he has a deal in place to continue with Lotus next season, and is already in talks with team CEO Tony Fernandes about extending that contract further.
Suggestions that the Italian may have been promised a new deal if he made way for Chandhok this weekend were rubbished by former F1 team boss Eddie Jordan in his role as BBC