Esteban Gutierrez says he is grateful for the “amazing opportunity” he had this season as Ferrari's test and reserve driver.
Gutierrez joined the Scuderia last December after being dropped by Sauber, but will move to Haas F1 in 2016, after securing a race seat alongside Frenchman and ex-Lotus driver, Romain Grosjean.
“In this moment, first of all, I feel very grateful for this amazing opportunity to be with Ferrari,” Gutierrez said at the Maranello team's end of year Christmas get-together.
“It has been a very long season, but at the same time it went by very quickly. I have learnt many things from a lot of very good guys in the team, best mechanics, best engineers, two World Champions like Sebastian [Vettel] and Kimi [Raikkonen], the best team principal, Maurizio [Arrivabene], and I really want to thank them because they have opened the doors for me to be part of it as a third driver, to contribute as well and to take the most of my experience.
“Now I have a big challenge ahead [with Haas F1], that I'm much looking forward to.”
Looking to next year, Gutierrez added he is convinced he can help Haas F1 progress in its debut season.
“I believe that I can contribute a lot with my experience, my knowledge of the development of the engine, the gearbox from 2012 to 2013, 2014 when the rules changed dramatically. How it developed from 2014 to 2015, I've always been driving Ferrari engines so I know all the procedures and everything. I think it's a very important thing to have,” he underlined.